Carl Icahn is Now Herbalife’s Largest Shareholder

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Carl Icahn is Now Herbalife's Largest Shareholder

Carl Icahn had a very busy day today. Earlier Carl Icahn issued a letter to Dell’s special board Committee in which he urged the company not to go private. Icahn is believed to own  a 6% stake in Dell. Dell which was in “the process” of going private, is now facing challenges from some shareholders including Icahn who are not satisfied with the deal. Icahn wants to stop the buyout and force Dell to issue a $9 special dividend. Shares of Dell (NASDAQ:DELL) closed in today’s trading session at $14.22, down 0.70%.

Additionally, Icahn issued an open letter to shareholders of  Transocean ltd. (NYSE:RIG) asking them to approve board changes and issue a special $4 dividend. Icahn recently purchased 5.6% of the company and is attempting to force management to implement changes at the driller.

And in the biggest news of the day….. Carl Icahn has filed a 13D showing an increase in his Herbalife Ltd. (NYSE:HLF) holding. Icahn who owned 13.6% of the company as of March 1st 2013, now owns $15.5% of the company. Icahn has rights to buy up to 25% of the company and has announced plans to add two members to the board. Carl Icahn has now surpassed Fidelity Investments as the largest shareholder of the firm.

Herbalife Ltd. (NYSE:HLF) was in the news earlier today as Jim Chanos whom many believed had shorted the company confirmed in a CNBC interview that he was indeed short at one point. Jim Chanos who no longer has a position in Herbalife seemed to side with Bill Ackman who has a $1 billion short bet and believes that the company is a pyramid scheme.

When Icahn first revealed his 13.6% stake in Herbalife he called the shares cheap and thanked Bill Ackman for bringing the stock price down. Icahn originally purchased shares (and options which if exercised equal) $26 a share. However, the filing today shows the Icahn purchased shares of Herbalife at over $40 a share.

Carl Icahn who has publicly stated that he dislikes Ackman denies that the investment is personal. However, Carl Icahn’s latest purchase of Herbalife shares were all above $40. This demonstrates that Icahn thinks the stock is still really cheap after a 60% rise (or he just wants to make Ackman’s life miserable). Carl Icahn purchased the shares between March 5th and March 7th 2013.

Herbalife Ltd. (NYSE:HLF) has been a source of controversy with many famous investors taking the short and long side. To recap, David Einhorn and Jim Chanos were short while  Bill Ackman currently is short. Dan Loeb purchased up to 8.2% of the company although the current holding is unknown, and Carl Icahn (the arch enemy of Bill Ackman) is now Herbalife’s largest shareholder.

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