Bill Ackman

Ackman, who has teamed up with Canadian pharmaceutical company Valeant to launch a $45.6 billion takeover of Botox maker Allergan, warned drugmakers Tuesday that he plans to go on a little buying spree. “This is not the last deal we’re going to do,” he said. “We’re already talking about the next deal we’re going to do with Valeant.” “There are $10 trillion worth of targets,” said Ackman, referring to the combined market cap of the pharmaceutical industry. “I call this the shopping list.” [NYP]


Last night, in an interview with CNBC, Carl Icahn had this to say about fellow hedge fund manager Bill Ackman and his recent bid with drugmaker Valiant Pharmaceuticals for Botox maker Allergan:

“We have our differences, but I never said he’s not a smart guy. I think the concept of this is good. I hope it works out better for him than Herbalife did, and I think it will…There’s nothing wrong with making a bid for a company and using someone else’s funds.”

Those of you who’ve kept up with Icahn and Ackman’s relationship know that Icahn saying he never said Ackman’s “not a smart guy” represents a complete 180 from his comments about the Pershing Square manager in the past. Those include but are not limited to:

  • To the New York Times: “How many times have judges been wrong? How many people have gone to the death chamber because they’re wrong? Ackman is dead wrong.”
  • On BloombergTV: “…it’s no secret I don’t like Ackman”
  • Also on BloombergTV: “I have no respect for him and I don’t like him and that’s not a secret.”
  • In the same interview on BloombergTV: “I dislike the guy, I don’t respect him, I’ve done business with him and he wasn’t forthright…that’s my opinion.”
  • Via press release: “To get the record straight, I never asked Ackman to be my friend.”
  • In the same press release: “Bill Ackman has recently stated ‘Carl Icahn is a great investor.’ I thank him but unfortunately I cannot return the compliment.”
  • On CNBC: “I was minding my own business in 2003 and I get a call from this Ackman guy and he’s like the crybaby in the school yard. I went to a tough school in Queens and they used to beat up the little Jewish boys and he was like these little Jewish boys crying saying the world was taking advantage of him. He was almost sobbing. And he’s in my office talking about this Hallwood deal and how I can help him. It’s like in the old song, I rue the day I ever met the guy.”
  • In the same interview on CNBC: “He’s the quintessential example of if you want a friend, get a dog.”
  • CNBC: “I wouldn’t invest with [Ackman] if [he] were the last man on earth.”

So to hear Icahn not only describe Ackman as not not smart but to compliment his “concept” was more than a little bit surprising. But why the about face? It’s possible it had something to do what happens at 2:58 here: Read more »

  • 22 Apr 2014 at 3:48 PM

Bill Ackman Doing Okay For Himself This Year

Every Ackman investment appears to have made money this year, including Beam, the Herbalife short and Platform Specialty Products Corp. Nutritional supplement maker Herbalife, for example, has been hit by reports of several government investigations into the company, which has helped push the stock down about 26 percent so far in 2014. The Pershing Square International fund is up 11.1 percent net of fees in the first quarter alone, according to a report by the HSBC Alternative Investment Group. [NetNet]

Bill Ackman’s Persistent Lobbying Efforts Pay Off

This week was looking like one that Bill Ackman would want to forget. It began with a New York Times article that read like something Herbalife CEO Michael Johnson and Carl Icahn might have collaborated on. It continued with yesterday’s $300 million Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac hiccup. Even Ackman’s latest presentation on what he very sincerely hopes is a pyramid scheme, accusing Herbalife of breaking Chinese laws, failed to either lift his spirit or dent its stock price. But this has definitely accomplished the latter, and almost certainly the former. Read more »

  • 11 Mar 2014 at 6:12 PM

Recommended Reading From Herbalife

Perhaps you noticed that The New York Times spilled a very great deal of ink on Bill Ackman’s crusade against Herbalife on Sunday. In short, sayeth the Grey Lady: Ackman spent $1 billion betting that Herbalife was a fraud and has spent the ensuing 15 months or so asking people in power to prove his hunch.

Well, if you hadn’t noticed, Herbalife would like you to take a peek. Read more »

The Pershing Square chief thinks that Fairholme Capital and Perry Capital will win their lawsuits re: the government stealing Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac from their shareholders and directing every last cent of profit into Jack Lew’s slush fund. And he’s figured out how to make even more money from said victory than they will: It begins with not having to pay lawyers to sue the government and ends with common shares doing better than Fairholme and Perry’s preferred shares. Read more »

Even better than the last time he asked, when the only thing that happened was the opposite of what he wanted, and cost him a large sum of money. Read more »