Ackman’s Pershing Square Beneficially Holds 30.9 Percent In Newly-listed Platform Specialty (PAH)

Bill AckmanBill Ackman Photo via InsiderMonkey, Flickr (CC BY-ND 2.0)

A 13G filing by Bill Ackman’s Pershing Square Capital Management shows an aggregate of 33,333,332 shares beneficially owned by each reporting person  in Platform Specialty Products Corp (NYSE:PAH), which acquired MacDermid, a specialty chemicals manufacturer, last year for $1.8B. That is equivalent to a holding of 30.9%.

MacDermid is Platform’s door to specialty chemicals

Platform Specialty Products Corp (NYSE:PAH) was previously known and incorporated as Platform Acquisition Holdings Ltd. Listed on the London Stock Exchange, its avowed mission was to acquire and operate businesses having an enterprise value of between $750M and $2.5B.

MacDermid has been producing high technology, specialty chemical products for more than 90 years and serves 3,500 customers in over 20 countries. It has about 2,000 employees located at various sites across the globe.

Platform Specialty Products Corp (NYSE:PAH) is chaired by Martin E Franklin while MacDermid CEO Dan Leever runs Platform’s operations. Leever expects to become one of Platform’s largest shareholders once his equity in MacDermid is rolled into the new company.

Dan Leever, Platform’s CEO said on the occasion of the company’s NYSE listing, “Platform’s key mission is to create value for our shareholders by building a portfolio of market-leading specialty chemicals businesses. We believe that our listing on the New York Stock Exchange furthers this objective by elevating our profile on a global scale, enhancing liquidity and visibility, and increasing the accessibility of our shares.”

Platform commenced trading on NYSE

Platform commenced trading on the NYSE effective Thursday, Jan 23. It touched a high of $15.50 on the day of listing.

On Friday, Platform traded 1.27M shares on the NYSE and closed at $14.40 having traded as low as $14.01 during the day.

It is now in the process of delisting from the London Stock Exchange. Platform has made an application to the Financial Conduct Authority for the listing of its ordinary shares and warrants to be cancelled from the Official List and for the admission to trading of its ordinary shares and warrants to be cancelled from the Main Market of the London Stock Exchange. The cancellation is due to take effect on 21 February 2014.

Ackman recommends 28-year old to Platform’s board

According to The Street, Ackman was offered a seat on Platform Specialty Products Corp (NYSE:PAH)’s board but chose instead to recommend Ryan Israel, 28, to the position. Israel was previously an analyst at Goldman Sachs where he covered technology, media and telecom.

Ackman is a billionaire activist investor who was recently in the news when it was announced that BEAM Inc. (NYSE:BEAM) would be acquired by Japanese drinks major Suntory in a $16B deal – Bill Ackman held a big 20.8 million-share-stake in BEAM (13.01% of his portfolio).

According to estimates, Ackman could have profited about $371M on that holding.

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About the Author

Saul Griffith
Saul Griffith is an investor in stocks, commodities and forex, writing under a pen name. Saul has top accounting qualifications and extensive experience in industry and the financial markets. He also has an abiding interest in breaking news that could be a harbinger of new trends and give insight into an instrument’s potential for providing value, growth or yield.

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