Shareholder increases stake from 4% to 9.17%
Lionsgate shareholder Carl Icahn, recognizing a bargain when he sees one, has upped his stake in the company from 4% to more than 9%.The indie known for the “Saw” franchise and TV’s “Mad Men” has seen the value of its stock plummet along with that of other media companies in recent weeks. It has touched the $6 mark at times this month, but closed Monday at $7.37, up 6% as many stocks rallied but still well short of its 52-week high of $10.97. In an SEC filing late Monday, Icahn said he gained the 9.17% stake “in the belief the shares were undervalued.” Icahn has long been known as one of the preeminent activist shareholders, especially for a protracted battle with the heads of Time Warner. He has been a Lionsgate shareholder for three years. “We continue to have a constructive dialogue,” a Lionsgate rep said. “He has a superb track record in terms of recognizing when strong assets are undervalued.” No drama comparable to that at turn-of-the-century Time Warner or Motorola, to name two recent Icahn quests, is unfolding in Lionsgate’s corporate suite. The company in the past couple of months extended chief exec Jon Feltheimer’s deal through 2014 and closed a $350 million credit facility with J.P. Morgan. Just as crucially in today’s environment, the company rep added, it has no corporate bank debt.