Carl Icahn, the billionaire activist investor, has attempted to start a bidding war for household goods maker Clorox by putting the company in play with a low offer.
On Friday Icahn sent a letter to Clorox offering $76.50 but suggesting the company should hold a friendly sale process to see whether it can solicit a ‘superior’ bid.
The initial offer should help kick-start the bidding process, says Icahn. ‘It is widely known that in this industry ‘uninvited’ offers are frowned upon,’ he writes in the letter.
Icahn, who is Clorox’s largest shareholder with a holding of just under 10 per cent, says a sale to another consumer goods company would generate significant cost and revenue synergies.
He lists Procter & Gamble, Unilever, Colgate-Palmolive, Reckitt Benckiser, Kimberly-Clark and Henkel as potential buyers of the stock.
Even an offer as high as $100 a share would be highly attractive to many potential bidders, Icahn adds.
Clorox released a statement on Friday saying it would consider the unsolicited proposal in due course.
The full letter is available to read on the SEC’s website.
[Article by Tim Human, IR magazine]