Carl “iCahn” Icahn is back on Twitter. The billionaire activist took to his official Twitter account this week to brag that he has pulled a “no brainer” by purchasing $500 million more shares of Apple stock in the last two weeks, and to continue to moan that Apple is doing a great disservice to its shareholders by not buying more of its stock back.
Icahn’s total stake in Apple grew to more than $3 billion as of Tuesday, up from his previous stake of around $2.5 billion. The comments made by Iachn Tuesday morning helped to send shares up nearly 1.5 percent in early trading.
Icahn has also promised he’ll be publishing an “in-depth letter” soon that will detail his continued effort to get Apple to stop doing McDuck-like dives into their pile of cash, and instead use it to buy back more of its shares. Not by coincidence, such a move by Apple would make Icahn’s shares worth more, thus enabling him to make his own all-cash swimming hole just a little deeper.
Fiscal 2013 saw Apple spend $23 billion of an expanded $60 billion share repurchasing authorization. That makes a total for combined dividend and repurchasing payments of over $43 billion since the program kicked off six quarters ago.
Icahn is not satisfied with the rate of buyback so far, and has formally filed a shareholder proposal to push his repurchase plan. Apple has, of course, recommended against his proposal.
Although the company had advised against Icahn’s plans, he continues to carry some considerable clout with the company, as both Apple CEO Tim Cook, and CFO Peter Oppenheimer have met with him in the past.
This, in spite of the fact Icahn refuses to spell his name in the proper “iCahn” format. He also poses for photos much like a 40-Year Old Virgin, but that is neither here nor there.