Billionaire investor Carl Icahn offered by buy Clorox Co. (CLX) in a transaction valued at about $12.6 billion designed to flush other potential bidders.
Icahn, the company’s largest investor with a 9.4 percent stake, offered to pay $76.50 a share, according to a filing released today. Clorox shares closed at $68.43 in New York trading yesterday.
While making the takeover approach, Icahn at the same time urged the company to seek offers from other companies that could generate savings from a merger. The investor said he’s confident that there would be “numerous superior bids” for the company, he said.
Icahn, in a letter to Clorox Chief Executive Officer Donald Knauss yesterday, said it would issue a $100 million payment to reimburse Clorox should it accept the offer and a deal not go through. The investor has obtained a “highly confident” letter from Jefferies & Co. over financing the proposed takeover, it said.
Icahn built his reputation as a corporate raider in the 1980s, targeting companies such as Phillips Petroleum Co. and Texaco Inc. He has also sparred with management at Time Warner Inc. and Yahoo! Inc. He often spends years holding stocks as he waits for investments to pay off.
Clorox owns disparate brands including Hidden Valley salad dressing, Burt’s Bees skin care and Kingsford charcoal.
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