Billionaire Wall Street investor and shareholder activist, Carl Ichan, has once
again boosted his stake in Motorola Inc., taking a 6.3% interest in the company.
The increase in Icahn’s share, disclosed on Wednesday in an SEC filing, comes as
the maverick shareholder steps up pressure on Motorola’s board of directors and
recently installed CEO, Greg Brown. Icahn wants the company to spin off its
struggling mobile phone division and return money to shareholders, putting
forward a slate of four new potential board members to further this agenda.
Motorola’s existing board is openly encouraging investors to reject Icahn’s
nominees, setting the stage for a repeat of the proxy battle last spring. Since
that showdown, CEO Ed Zander, who led Motorola through the RAZR surge but was
blamed for the company’s subsequent decline, has resigned his position, setting
up a whole new battle field between Icahn and the company establishment.
Ichan and entities owned by him have spent a total of more than $2 billion to
purchase 142.36 Motorola shares since early 2007, when a massive decline in
profits forced the company to abandon its strategy of building its share of the
global handset market.
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