Thursday, June 14, 2007

Bill Ackman: Pershing Square to Oppose Ceridian Deal

Pershing Square, which bought its initial stake in Ceridian in December, has been pressuring Ceridian to spin off its Comdata credit card unit rather than seek a purchaser. Pershing Square is known for its shareholder activism—a tactic based on using shareholder power to influence or direct a company in a fashion conducive to shareholder value. Shareholder activism can involve trying to replace company management or pushing for a sale of part or all of the company.

In addition to Ceridian, New York-headquartered Pershing Square has of late battled McDonald’s and Wendy’s. Pershing Square succeeded in getting McDonald’s to buy back more than $1 billion in stock and pushing Wendy’s to spin off its Tim Horton’s doughnut chain. Pershing Square is now said to be raising $2 billion in order to buy a controlling stake in a big-name company.

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