Icahn Sells Entire Stake in RJR Nabisco
Financier Carl Icahn sold his 19.93 million shares of RJR Nabisco Holding Corp. for $732.4 million, all but ending his 17-month attempt to force the food and tobacco company to split in two. Icahn said investor euphoria over talks to settle legal claims against the tobacco industry dashed his second bid to win control of the maker of Camel cigarettes and Oreo cookies. He made about $134.5 million from the sale, not including dividends. It isn’t Icahn’s first abrupt exit. He sold his 13% stake in USX Corp. in 1991 after forcing it to separate its steel and energy businesses. His RJR gambit wasn’t nearly as successful: A spinoff of the food unit isn’t imminent and he had a slim chance at replacing the board. Shares in the New York-based company fell $1.125 to close at $36.625 on the New York Stock Exchange. Goldman, Sachs & Co. helped arrange the sale, which Icahn said was sold at $36.75. Icahn said in an SEC filing that he paid an average of $30 a share.