In an unexpected turnaround, Carl Icahn purchased more shares in Herbalife Limited on Friday, only a few days after he was considering selling his shares in the contentious nutritional products manufacturer. Carl Icahn stated on Friday that he purchased another 2.3 million shares of Herbalife, criticizing Bill Ackman, the hedge fund manager for his obsession with the company.
Mr. Icahn’s new purchase brings his stake to more than 19.3 million, or 20.8% of the company; he said this late Friday. The Wall Street Journal had previously reported that Icahn was trying to sell his position to a group that included his fellow investor, William Ackman.
In his statement, he criticized Mr. Ackman, who for long had contended that Herbalife is an investment scam. In an interview with CNBC on Friday, Ackman also stated Icahn was a Herbalife, stock seller.
Earlier on Friday, Ackman told CNBC that Mr. Icahn had approached him indirectly asking him to buy his shares in Herbalife. When he was asked what he felt was the reason for the offer, Ackman replied that he believed that Icahn had made a lot of money and wanted to move on from any projected fall-out.
Icahn refuted Ackman’s claims. He mentioned that while several investment banks had made bids for his stake in the company, he has never made an offer to Ackman. The drama is just a taste of the recent flare-up of the longwinded rivalry between both billionaires over Herbalife.
Herbalife Chairman and CEO Michael Johnson also stated that the company values the support of their investors and were particularly glad that Carl Icahn had confidence in the company. Icahn’s buy has reversed an earlier drop in the value of the shares. His purchase resulted in a 4% increase in value.