William Stiritz has taken a 5 percent stake in Herbalife Ltd. (NYSE:HLF) according to a 13G filing the fund manager made with the SEC earlier today. Stiritz is a Private Equity investor at the head of Post Holdings LLC. Shares in the company have begun to shoot up since Stiritz’ involvement was disclosed.
Earlier today, shares in Herbalife Ltd. (NYSE:HLF) were crashing as the media renewed its interest in the company’s pyramid structure, and brought to light the academic work behind Bill Ackman’s bet against the company. Stock dropped to less than $58 per share just after the market opened this morning, but managed to pull back later on today.
Stiritz joins hedge fund circus
William Stiritz is not the first big investor to jump on the chance to buy Herbalife Ltd (NYSE:HLF) shares. George Soros has been involved in the company’s stock for months, and many other hedge fund managers have jumped in and out of short positions on the company. William Ackman is leading the charge to short the company, but with 84 percent gains this year, that campaign is not going too well.
Stiritz is the Chairman and CEO of Post Holdings, the food company. He also served as Chairman of the board at Ralcorp Holdings, another food company, until last year when Ralcorp spun off Post Holdings in an IPO. Stiritz has served on the boards of many American corporate giants including Energizer Holdings and Vail Resorts.
Herbalife crowded with talent
It’s unclear at this stage what the intentions of Mr. Stiritz is at Herbalife Ltd. (NYSE:HLF). The investor’s history, and the size of his stake, would seem to indicate a wish to have a role in the running of the company, but the fact that this filing was a 13G suggests otherwise. Stiritz is allowed to change the type of filing in the future, however.
If Stiritz does decide to get vocal about the company, he will have to face opposing ideas from a lot of hedge fund managers used to being vocal. Stiritz may decide to take a run at Herbalife Ltd. (NYSE:HLF), but with all of the investing talent involved in the company it won’t be an easy road.