Icahn Keeps Hold of PayPal as He Sells Out of Former Parent EBay

Options Update: How to Play PayPal
  • Activist investor stays busy with AIG stake, Freeport-McMoRan
  • Icahn agitated for PayPal spinoff, which began trading July

Icahn Associates Corp., the fund run by billionaire activist investor Carl Icahn, sold its remaining EBay Inc. stake at the same time as it reported a 3.8 percent holding in the Internet auction company’s spun off payments unit PayPal Holdings Inc.

The New York-based fund in the third quarter bought about 1.36 million shares of insurer American International Group Inc. and held 8.8 percent of Freeport-McMoRan Inc., according to a filing Monday with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Both investments were earlier made public.

Icahn led a lengthy fight at EBay, agitating for the company to spin off PayPal, which it eventually agreed to do.

Icahn, 79, rebranded as an activist investor and outspoken shareholder advocate after gaining fame as a corporate raider in the 1980s. In recent years he has taken stakes in companies including Apple Inc., Cheniere Energy Inc., and Manitowoc Co., and agitated for changes such as share buybacks and spin-offs, which he argued would create shareholder value.

The New York-based investor is worth more than $21 billion, according to Bloomberg Billionaires, and primarily invests his own fortune, rather than relying on money from outsiders.

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