Hertz gears up for another financial spin

August 21, 2014

Carl Icahn is the latest to buy into the struggling $14 bln car rental firm. Over nearly a century, automakers GM and Ford, an airline, a 1960s conglomerate, private equity and the public have owned Hertz. It’s a perennial investor plaything. Maybe Uber could even be next.

Discounters’ $20 bln deal may spark M&A price war

July 28, 2014

Dollar Tree has found more than enough savings to cover the 23 pct premium to be paid to Carl Icahn and other Family Dollar investors. As a percentage of revenue, though, the synergies are relatively low. That may leave room for sector giant Dollar General to lob in a bid.

Hacked eBay exposes itself to another attack

May 24, 2014

Carl Icahn buried the hatchet with the online auctioneer’s board before it came out that records of 145 mln customers were breached. Similar cracks just cost the boss of retailer Target his job. That leaves an opening for another investor to pressure eBay’s CEO and directors.

Icahn loses battle of bluster at eBay

April 10, 2014

The activist is quitting his proxy fight now that the company is appointing one new director and agreeing to talk to him. Considering Icahn had “never seen worse governance” and was right about separating PayPal, that’s a retreat. But he may yet win the spinoff war.

A field guide to shareholder-friendly activism

April 7, 2014

Agitators like Carl Icahn say they operate for the benefit of all investors. It depends on the goals and methods. Critiquing lax governance or nominating qualified new blood to a dozy board fits the bill. Special dealing doesn’t. Breakingviews shows how to spot the right animals.

Icahn targets given red alert by Dynegy debacle

By Christopher Swann
March 12, 2012

The activist’s reputation already precedes him when he turns up to agitate. Now a court-appointed official has shredded a retooling at Dynegy, where Icahn meddled and installed directors. Firms on the receiving end of his tactics, like CVR, have all the more reason to spurn him.

Icahn gives Breakingviews a window into his method

March 27, 2012

The billionaire’s reaction to a recent column echoed his approach to corporate boards. A demanding phone call, a written riposte and a form of greenmail all came into play. It’s easier now to empathize with Icahn’s targets, but also showed our interests somewhat align with his.

Ackman vs Icahn is an epic but pointless battle

January 25, 2013

A personal feud between the two New York billionaires has erupted anew. Though it’s emblematic of their approach to investing and escapist fun for financiers, the two men play important roles in the markets. Their aggressions are better directed at supine boards than each other.

Herbalife: the ultimate financial plaything

February 15, 2013

Carl Icahn is joining Bill Ackman and Dan Loeb in the war over the nutritional supplements seller. One idea of his is another Herbalife buyout. The controversial business model and rich cash flow make it easy for Wall Street to keep imprinting fresh narratives on the company.

Blackstone, Icahn likely to stub toe on Dell

March 25, 2013

Both are offering more for the computer maker than its eponymous founder. But the new bids rely on existing investors keeping a small public stake. In theory that obviates the need to get Michael Dell’s support. In practice, the downsides of such stub equity make it a long shot.