Money managers under the microscope
Icahn’t: Carl says no time for blogging, too little interest
Our favorite billionaire blogger and corporate raider Carl Icahn is safely avoiding writer’s cramp. His Icahn Report, launched to much fanfare as a hub for corporate governance and reform, has not been updated since April 16.
Reuters caught up with Icahn this week to discuss his intervention in CIT’s attempted rescue. The legendary investor threw a bomb into the lender’s efforts to strike a debt swap deal with its creditors, and to stay in business through a reorganization plan, by offering a $6 billion loan. Asked about the lack of production on his blog, Icahn explained he’s been fully engaged this year:
“I’ve been sort of busy. And right now, with the market up, there’s not as much interest in corporate governance like the were was a couple of months ago. I’ve been so busy, with all these positions we’ve got. There’s a lot going on.”
So we checked with Damien Park, who runs activist research group Hedge Fund Solutions LLC and has his own blog tracking activist activity. He observed that Icahn has been seeking board seats at Enzon Pharmaceuticals, Biogen, Amylin and Lions Gate. He was actively pestering Yahoo late last year and has remained a vocal shareholder.
“He’s been livelier than most of the larger activist investors this year. That’s for sure,” Park said.
More interesting, perhaps, is Icahn’s point that corporate governance fades as an issue when markets rebound. He announced the blog in 2007 and finally posted his first item on June 2008, as the credit crisis worsened. Perhaps his logging off is a good signal.