Yesterday afternoon, hedge fund manager Bill Ackman made a bold statement. A presentation delivered live in midtown Tuesday morning was to be “the most important” one of his career and at the end of it, we would “learn why Herbalife is going to collapse.” On CNBC, he acknowledged that he was “raising expectations,” but assured the public it would not be disappointed. How’d he do? That all depends on what you were hoping for. If it was a PowerPoint that convinced the market that Herbalife, Ackman’s sworn enemy, was going down for the dirt nap, then technically, the hedge fund manager probably disappointed you a little.
Herbalife Ltd.’s shares jumped as much as 14 percent after hedge-fund manager Bill Ackman struggled to convince investors that the seller of weight-loss shakes is guilty of fraud.
On the other hand, if you were hoping for a presentation filled with passion, courage, feeling, and above all, patriotism, your expectations were met and then some. Read more »
Hedge fund manager Bill Ackman has given many momentous presentations in his day: the unveiling of his Herbalife short, his highly emotional address of Target shareholders, and all matters of MBIA. But believe him when he says such things will absolutely pale in comparison to tomorrow’s event. Forget the thousands of hours he’s already spent publicly lambasting Herbalife’s business practices in the past. THIS is the one you REALLY have to listen to. It will be the final word on diet shakes. Read more »
If you’re up to speed on the latest trends in Where Rich U.S. Citizens Are Talking About Moving To Beat What They Believe Is An Oppressive Tax Code, you know that Puerto Rico is high on the list. Working in its favor is the fact that it’s a relatively quick trip (versus, say, Singapore), the weather’s pretty good, and there are some decent private schools for Junior and Buffy to attend. Sure, the crime is something to think about, but probably the biggest impediment? The thing that’s gotta be figured out stat if the territory is going to make John Paulson some serious money on his bet that millionaires are going to start moving their en masse? The god damn line at Quiznos. Read more »
Last August, a report came out claiming that Raj Rajaratnam was having the time of his life in prison. As someone who went to great lengths to avoid going to jail (not so much by staying on the right side of securities laws but by paying a high-priced lawyer to accuse people churning out supposedly slanted coverage of his client of “sucking [U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York] Preet Barhara’s teat“), this revelation came as a surprise. As a hedge fund billionaire who’d grown used to a luxurious lot in which he paid many people to keep him comfortable and content, there was an expectation that life on the inside would come as a rude awakening. And, yet, the report claimed that Raj was “reigning like a king,” “doing his time in the lap of luxury compared to other inmates,” with a set-up that included:
A private toilet
A shared balcony
An adjustable bed
“A very delightful guy doing all sorts of stuff for him– sort of like a ‘manservant'”
An inmate who cooks for him using a microwave when he “doesn’t want to hoof it to the dining hall”
Unfortunately for anyone anticipating doing time on the inside, all of these perks apparently come at a cost, according to a guy who claims Raj had to pay a number people off to arrange the manservant and en-suite, among other things. Read more »
From 2006-2011, former soap opera star Adriana Ferreyr was the “on-again, off-again” girlfriend of hedge fund manager George Soros. As the story goes, toward the end of their relationship, Soros promised Ferreyr her “dream” apartment on East 85th Street, broke up with her a day after the place went into contract, texted her “what are you up to?”1 one night a few weeks later, and then, after going over to her place to “reconcile,” whispered in her ear that he’d given her apartment away to another woman (who would later become his wife). Since then, Ferreyr has demonstrated time and time again that she’s packing a serious pair, but no more so than today. Before we get into that, though, a brief recap of Ferrey’rs balls in action:
February 2014: Ferreyr starts off a deposition with Soros by calling him an “asshole” and a “piece of shit.” Proceeds to scream “expletives” at Soros’s lawyer, hits Soros in the head with such intensity that she knocks off his hearing aid, hits Soros’s lawyer in the head, knocking the glasses off his face, slaps a Soros aid and kicks him in the shins, tells Soros’s lawyer he’s “going down” and should “go to prison and get beat up.”
So, she’s obviously holding out for a lot more than $1 million, but how much? The dream apartment was worth $1.9 million, would that do the trick? $2 million? $3 million? A nice round five? Apparently the answer is none of the above. Read more »
Philip Falcone resigned from the board of LightSquared Inc., the bankrupt wireless-spectrum owner he has tried to build into a rival to U.S. mobile providers, amid negotiations with creditors to reorganize the company. Falcone and four other people appointed to the board by his Harbinger Capital Partners voluntarily resigned on June 12, according to a letter filed with the Federal Communications Commission and posted on the agency’s website. Falcone, 51, had been fighting to keep control of the company throughout its two years in bankruptcy. At one point, Dish Network Corp. Chairman Charles Ergen made a $2.22 billion offer for its assets, only to withdraw the bid at the last minute. Falcone accused Ergen of acquiring LightSquared debt improperly to game the bankruptcy process. U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Shelley Chapman rejected a Falcone-backed reorganization plan in May, saying it was largely unfair to Ergen, while she also faulted Ergen’s behavior during the case. Since then, LightSquared and its creditors have entered court-supervised mediation to work out a new plan. [Bloomberg]