back to article Apple investor Icahn backs down on share buyback plan

Activist investor Carl Icahn has laid down his sword and given up the fight to persuade Apple to launch a $150bn share buyback. His surprise capitulation comes after influential proxy firm ISS advised investors to vote against Icahn's proposal for Apple to buy back its own – thus allowing shareholders to get their mitts on …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Maybe he should change his name to iCant ?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      I can I can't?

      (League of gentlemen reference).

    2. Callam McMillan

      I think you mistyped the a... I'm pretty sure it should be a u

      1. Fatman Silver badge

        RE: I'm pretty sure it should be a u

        You beat me to it!!!

    3. johnnymotel


  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Carl Icahnihavacheezeburger.

  3. ratfox Silver badge

    Tim Cook does not, in fact, have $145 billion in cash

    Most of that cash is overseas… And so, to buy more, Apple would either have to pay US taxes on that money (when pigs fly), or borrow money (through bonds).

  4. Mark 85 Silver badge

    Sore loser

    Icahn is just pissed because he couldn't do a TWA on Apple. The man's ego and greed is beyond belief. It was bad enough during the TWA years and it's only getting worse.

  5. Someone Else Silver badge

    Maybe there is hope for Wall St. yet?

    Two...count 'em, two, Wall St. inventor firms told Ichan to go pound sand, and so the fatass tucks his tail between his (6?) legs and slithers off into the sunset. A sudden infusion of common sense into the Wall St. lexicon? You decide. IMHO, it is a victory for common sense, and an(other) epic fail for Carl Fatass Ichan.

    1. Oninoshiko

      Re: Maybe there is hope for Wall St. yet?

      While I don't have BMI numbers or anything, Carl Ichan's photos seem to indicate he is not heavy-set.

      and how does one have 6 legs and still slither? This is all very confusing.

    2. JDX Gold badge

      Re: Maybe there is hope for Wall St. yet?

      Beating Icahn might push up stock prices meaning he still wins though.

  6. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

    But the question is,

    Who's next on his Radar?

    Will they have the balls to standup to this carpetbagger?

    I hope that whoever is his next target sticks it to him and he loses a packet on the deal.

  7. Tromos

    Greed or stupidity?

    "$GOOG @ 19x2014 est operating profit. At same multiple $AAPL=$1,245 per share. Ridiculous."

    I agree, it's ridiculous. What is ridiculous is applying the same multiple to AAPL. GOOG can keep generating the 2014 operating profit year after year without having to do anything significantly different and have no problem with repeat orders. AAPL have to come up with new products that are sufficiently exciting to entice customers into replacing old shiny with new shiny. This also saturates the second hand market driving down demand/prices for older models.

    So is Icahn greedy or just stupid? I'll leave that as an exercise for my fellow commentards.

    1. Wyrdness

      Re: Greed or stupidity?

      You're asking us if a man who's made around 20 billion dollars from investments, is greedy or stupid? I'd advise you against a career setting Mastermind questions.

    2. DougS Silver badge

      Re: Greed or stupidity?

      If all Google does is keep generating the same profit year after year, it deserves a ~ 10x multiple that is typically assigned to such stable companies that aren't seen as having much in the way of future growth prospects - i.e., Apple and Exxon.

      Google's 19x multiple indicates the belief it will keep growing its earnings. Since advertising is the only business that makes Google any significant cash, they have to keep pushing more and more ads to people. A LOT more ads given that the rates they are getting paid for their ads keep going DOWN as a double digit clip each year.

      In order to justify their current valuation, they might need to start delivering more in your face style ads that people don't like, but that generate better rates because while people dislike them they tend to produce better results (or at least those paying for the ads believe that to be the case, as evidenced by the fact they're willing to pay more for them)

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Greed or stupidity?

        Google delivers adverts? I never knew.

        (smug git who installs Adblock or equivalent on every browser they use)

        The more intrusive the advert the more people will look to avoid them. A viscous ever decreasing circle.

        What price the Google Multiple then?

        If I was a Google Investor I'd be wanting then to start delivering significant revenue (30%) from something other than adverts in the next year or so. There is some truth in the old saying about 'too much of a good thing' and a 'one trick pony'.

  8. pacman7de

    ISS said in a report for shareholders, seen by Reuters ..

    Why can't we see the original report ...

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "The activist investor had even said that if Apple doesn't want to pay the necessary taxes to repatriate some of its overseas cash money, it should borrow the money for the buyback programme and take advantage of historically low interest rates."

    That, ladies and gentleman, is why the western world is in the wonderful state that it is.

  10. Ant Evans

    I'm still waiting

    for my Apple iCahn. It was going to be a device that highjacks your other devices and forces them to return value to their owner. And it was going to be shiny. I was ready to queue all night for that.

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