AfterDawn: IT-alan uutiset

Miljardöörisijoittaja Icahn painostaa Applea aggressiivisempaan osakkeiden takaisinostoon

Kirjoittaja Manu Pitkänen (Google+) @ 25.10.2013 11:49 Kommentteja (2)

Miljardöörisijoittaja Icahn painostaa Applea aggressiivisempaan osakkeiden takaisinostoon Amerikkalainen liikemies ja sijoittaja Carl Icahn osti kesällä Applen osakkeita ja lisäsi tällä viikolla omistustaan IT-jätissä entisestään. Icahnin omistuksen arvo (4,7 miljoonaa osaketta) nykyisellä osakekurssilla on noin 2,5 miljardia dollaria, mutta hänen aikomuksena on ostaa osakkeita lisää tulevaisuudessa.
Sijoitusten kautta Icahn yrittää painostaa Applen johtoa kasvattamaan omien osakkeiden takaisinostoa jopa 150 miljardiin dollariin.

Apple on käynnistänyt omien osakkeiden ostot ja suunnitelmana on käyttää niihin vuoteen 2015 mennessä 60 miljardia dollaria. Icahnin mielestä ohjelma ei ole tarpeeksi suuri ja Applen ei tulisi jättää rahaa kassaan liian paljoa pahan päivän varalta. Hän on tavannut toimitusjohtaja Tim Cookin ja yrittänyt suostutella häntä moninkertaistamaan Applen osakkeiden ostot.

Mikäli Apple nöyrtyy Icahnin tahtoon, nousee osakkeiden takaisinosto maailman suurimpien yrityskauppojen suuruusluokkaan. Bloombergin mukaan yli 100 miljardin yritysjärjestelyitä on tehty maailmassa vain neljä ja näistä kahden arvo on yli 150 miljardia dollaria. Listauksesta ei tosin löydy Verizon Communicationsin ja Vodafone Groupin syksyllä julkistamaa 130 miljardin dollarin kauppaa.

Icahnin näkemyksen mukaan takaisinoston kasvattaminen 150 miljardiin dollariin nostaisi Applen osakekurssin 1250 dollarin hujakoille. Tämä tarkoittaisi sitä, että nykyisellä osakemäärällä Applesta tulisi markkina-arvolla mitattuna kirkkaasti maailman suurin yritys. Apple olisi maailman historian toinen yritys, jonka markkina-arvo kohoaisi yli biljoonaan dollariin. Tällä hetkellä biljoonan dollarin arvostukseen on päässyt vain öljy-yhtiö PetroChina listautumispäivänään Shanghain pörssissä vuonna 2007.

Icahn on avannut pyrkimystensä edistämistä varten oman verkkosivun, josta löytyy Tim Cookille osoitettu kirje (alla englanniksi).

Dear Tim:

It was a pleasure meeting you for dinner at the end of September. When we met, my affiliates and I owned 3,875,063 shares of Apple. As of this morning, we owned 4,730,739 shares of Apple, an increase of 22% in position size, reflecting our belief the market continues to dramatically undervalue the company, even when taking into account the recent market appreciation, which in turn makes our proposal unchanged with respect to a $150 Billion buyback. We were pleased to hear at our dinner that you appreciated our input and that you would speak to us again in three weeks to continue the dialogue. In anticipation of doing so soon, we aim to reiterate in this letter the point of view already expressed to you directly with the hope of effectively summarizing it for the company's board of directors and our fellow shareholders.

From our perspective, Apple is the world's greatest consumer product innovator and has one of the strongest and most respected brand names in history. We consider Apple to be our most compelling investment. I first informed my followers on Twitter on August 13, 2013 of my "large position." I also expressed to you my opinion that "a larger buyback should be done now." At that time, we owned 3,448,663 shares and the stock price was $467. Since then we have purchased an incremental 1,282,076 shares (bringing the total value of my position to $2.5 Billion) and we currently intend to buy more.

We want to be very clear that we could not be more supportive of you, the existing management team, the culture at Apple and the innovative spirit it engenders. The criticism we have as shareholders has nothing to do with your management leadership or operational strategy. Our criticism relates to one thing only: the size and timeframe of Apple's buyback program. It is obvious to us that it should be much bigger and immediate.

When we met, you agreed with us that the shares are undervalued. In our view, irrational undervaluation as dramatic as this is often a short term anomaly. The timing for a larger buyback is still ripe, but the opportunity will not last forever. While the board's actions to date ($60 billion share repurchase over three years) may seem like a large buyback, it is simply not large enough given that Apple currently holds $147 billion of cash on its balance sheet, and that it will generate $51 billion of EBIT next year (Wall Street consensus forecast).

The S&P 500 trades at roughly 14x forward earnings. After backing off net cash, Apple trades at just 9x (not factoring into account that the company has a significantly lower cash tax rate than the rate Wall Street analysts use). This discount (cash adjusted) becomes even more compelling given our confidence that Apple will grow earnings per share at a rate well in excess of the S&P 500 for the foreseeable future. With such an enormous valuation gap and such a massive amount of cash on the balance sheet, we find it difficult to imagine why the board would not move more aggressively to buy back stock by immediately announcing a $150 Billion tender offer (financed with debt or a mix of debt and cash on the balance sheet).

While this would certainly be unprecedented because of its size, it is actually appropriate and manageable relative to the size and financial strength of your company. Apple generates more than enough cash flow to service this amount of debt and has $147 billion of cash in the bank. As we proposed at our dinner, if the company decided to borrow the full $150 billion at a 3% interest rate to commence a tender at $525 per share, the result would be an immediate 33% boost to earnings per share, translating into a 33% increase in the value of the shares, which significantly assumes no multiple expansion. Longer term (in three years) if you execute this buyback as proposed, we expect the share price to appreciate to $1,250, assuming the market rewards EBIT growth of 7.5% per year with a more normal market multiple of 11x EBIT.

It is our belief that a company's board has a responsibility to recognize opportunities to increase shareholder value, which includes allocating capital to execute large and well-timed buybacks. Apple's Board of Directors does not currently include an individual with a track record as an investment professional. In my opinion, any further delay in executing the buyback we hereby propose will reflect this lack of expertise on the board. My firm's success and my expertise as an investor would be difficult for anyone to argue. Per my investment thesis, commencing this buyback immediately would ultimately result in further stock appreciation of 140% for the shareholders who choose not to sell into the proposed tender offer. Furthermore, to invalidate any possible criticism that I would not stand by this thesis in terms of its long term benefit to shareholders, I hereby agree to withhold my shares from the proposed $150 Billion tender offer. There is nothing short term about my intentions here.

Carl Icahn
Chairman, Icahn Enterprises

Edellinen Seuraava  

2 kommenttia

125.10.2013 13:15

There is nothing short term about my intentions here.
Ei tietenkään... Ei kai sijoittaja nyt semmosta tekis. ;)

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225.10.2013 22:01

Steve Jobs ei olisi edes vaivautunut kuuntelelemaan Carl Icahn.

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