Hedge Fund News: Bill Ackman, Carl Icahn & Ken Griffin

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Ackman’s Pershing Sells Rest of General Growth Properties Shares (BusinessWeek)
Bill Ackman, the activist hedge-fund manager, sold all of his shares in General Growth Properties Inc (NYSE:GGP), one of his most profitable investments. General Growth, the second-largest U.S. shopping mall owner, bought back about 28 million shares from Ackman’s Pershing Square Capital Management LP for $556 million, the company said today in a statement. The hedge-fund firm had sold another 25 million shares for $500 million in September. Ackman helped rescue General Growth from near-collapse by pushing it to file for bankruptcy in 2009, and was part of an investor group in its subsequent restructuring…

Bill Ackman in crowd

Icahn gives up Apple buyback plan after ISS urges ‘no’ vote (Reuters)
Billionaire activist investor Carl Icahn has backed off from his campaign urging Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) to increase its stock buybacks, citing the company’s recent repurchases as well as an influential proxy adviser’s call against his proposal. In a letter to Apple shareholders on Monday, Icahn wrote he was ditching his non-binding proposal to force Apple to add another $50 billion to its stock buyback plan, “especially when the company is already so close to fulfilling our requested repurchase target.” Apple shares closed up 1.8 percent higher at $528.99 on Monday.

Poor Banks Can’t Compete With Hedge Funds in Hiring (BusinessWeek)
Another day, another handful of traders fleeing large investment banks for hedge funds. This time, Bloomberg News reports, it is two Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (NYSE:GS) managing directors joining Citadel, Kenneth Griffin’s giant hedge fund, which is based in Chicago. Uberto Palomba, co-head of Goldman’s emerging markets trading, and Jonathan Tipermans, Goldman’s head of dollar-swaps trading, will be working for Citadel’s Global Fixed Income Fund, a unit that was started in 2008 and has been picking off seasoned bank veterans ever since.

Acquisition International Magazine’s International Hedge Fund Awards Selects Caissa as “Most Trusted Financial Risk Management Software” (SacBee)
Caissa, LLC has been named the Most Trusted Financial Risk Management Software in the annual International Hedge Fund Awards announced this week. Winners were selected by Acquisition International Magazine. Their readership includes institutional investors as well as managers and other industry professionals. Caissa, LLC works with institutions now representing in excess of $50B in assets. These allocators leverage Portfolio Navigator’s unparalleled data aggregation capability across all asset classes, investment structures, and transparency granularities, to assess their portfolio’s total strategic positioning in a user-friendly software.

Scout Weighs Dropping Final Fees After Clients Complain (BusinessWeek)
Scout Capital Management LLC, the $6.7 billion hedge-fund firm that is shutting on April 1, said it’s weighing whether to charge clients its management fee for the final quarter after investors complained. The firm, run by James Crichton and Adam Weiss, told clients Jan. 29 that it was closing because Weiss wanted to step back from managing outside capital. Scout said more than 80 percent of the portfolio was in cash, and the rest in easy to trade securities. Some clients have since objected to paying a management fee for the current quarter, given the high cash level in January and the fact that some investment staff had already left.

Icahn: No reason to persist with share buyback (CNBC)

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