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Carl Icahn was hardened on the school playgrounds of Queens in the 1940s. He knows how to play the game. So what if everyone hates his non-binding Apple buyback proposal, which had absolutely zero chance of succeeding? He doesn’t need it anymore; Apple has already given him an early birthday present.
While we are disappointed that last night ISS recommended against our proposal, we do not altogether disagree with their assessment and recommendation in light of recent actions taken by the company to aggressively repurchase shares in the market….
We also agree with ISS’s observation, taking into account that the company recently repurchased in “two weeks alone” $14 billion worth in shares, that “for fiscal 2014, it appears on track to repurchase at least $32 billion in shares.” Our proposal, as ISS points out, “thus effectively only asks the board to spend another $18 billion on repurchases in the current year.”
As Tim Cook describes them, these recent actions taken by the company to repurchase shares have been both “opportunistic” and “aggressive” and we are supportive. In light of these actions, and ISS’s recommendation, we see no reason to persist with our non-binding proposal, especially when the company is already so close to fulfilling our requested repurchase target.
Our Letter to Apple Shareholders [Shareholders’ Square Table]
Icahn’s Proposal for $50 Billion Apple Buyback Opposed by ISS [Bloomberg]
New York City Comptroller Resists Investor’s Calls for Apple Buyback [DealBook]