Herbalife Ltd.. (NYSE:HLF) announced in a press release today that it has made the list of the top 20 “Best Social Projects in Russia” for 2013. The nutritional supplements company said the Russian Federation government included it on the list for its corporate social responsibility efforts last year.
Herbalife on Russia’s list two years in a row
This is the second annual “Best Social Projects in Russia” program, which is aimed at identifying “best practices and social projects among businesses, society and the state, and to promote socially oriented projects of companies.” Herbalife Ltd. (NYSE:HLF) said the top 20 listing recognized its charitable activities through the Herbalife Family Foundation and the Casa Herbalife Program. The company also said it put the Herbalife name alongside major international companies like International Business Machines Corp (NYSE:IBM), Kia and Sanofi.
Herbalife Ltd. (NYSE:HLF) said it regularly holds “events for sponsored institutions and is committed to improving the lives of vulnerable children lacking in proper nutritional care.”
The battle over Herbalife rages on
Meanwhile, the debate about whether Herbalife Ltd. (NYSE:HLF) is a pyramid scheme or not rages on. On Wednesday, U.S. Sen. Ed Markey received his response from the Securities and Exchange Commission. The agency said it does not disclose or discuss whether it is or isn’t investigating any particular company. Markey is just one of many lawmakers and consumer advocates who have been calling for U.S. regulators to investigate the company as a possible pyramid scheme.
Activist investor Bill Ackman dragged Herbalife Ltd. (NYSE:HLF) into the spotlight in late 2012 when he alleged that it is a pyramid scheme and announced his major short position. Since then, he has rearranged his position, but he continues to contend that Herbalife is a pyramid scheme and has begun to profile individuals who are connected with the company in an attempt to discredit it.
Not all activist investors believe Herbalife Ltd. (NYSE:HLF) is a pyramid scheme. Recently Carl Icahn disclosed that he had increased his position in the company to 17 million shares.