Carl Icahn revealed today that he owns $2 billion worth of Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) stock. Icahn made the comments on CNBC today, and spoke about the dinner he had with Tim Cook on Monday. Icahn is pushing for a much bigger buyback of Apple stock by the company, and spoke candidly with the CEO of the company about the capital return program.
According to Icahn, he pushed for a $150 billion buyback of Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) at the dinner meeting with the company’s CEO. Icahn also said that the company’s chief financial officer Peter Oppenheimer was also present at the meeting. The activist investor said that the meeting was cordial.
Apple capital return program
Carl Icahn is arguing that Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) should share its massive success with its shareholders. He wants the company to borrow money at the lowest rates currently available on the market. Icahn tweeted about the dinner meeting this morning and told his followers that he and Cook planned to resume talks on a buyback in about three weeks.
Had a cordial dinner with Tim last night. We pushed hard for a 150 billion buyback. We decided to continue dialogue in about three weeks.
— Carl Icahn (@Carl_C_Icahn) October 1, 2013
A $150 billion stock buyback would be an astonishing achievement for Icahn. Shares in Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) rose on today’s market as traders looked to get in on the company before it decided to buy back the stock. Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) has only recently begun to return capital to investors. It is already buying back a large amount of shares, and the company is paying out a dividend.
Activist Icahn at Apple
Icahn is an activist investor. That means he uses his money and influence to change the way that companies are managed in order to increase the value of his investment. Icahn does not think that Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is badly managed, but he does think there is more the company could be doing to increase shareholder value.
With a $2 billion stake in the company Icahn is not a big shareholder by most counts. Activists usually hold more than 5 percent of a company before they start trying to change things at the top. A $2 billion investment in Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) means that Icahn holds much less than 1 percent of the company. He will only be able to bring about change if the management of the company agrees with him.