Icahn Walks Away From Commercial Metals

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Carl Icahn's Icahn Enterprises ( IEP) has withdrawn a$1.73 billion hostile bid for Commercial Metals ( CMC) after less than 40% of the scrap metals giant's shareholders tendered their shares.

The failed tender follows a similar move made in 2011, where Icahn failed in a proxy campaign to buy Clorox ( CLX) after being unable to garner shareholder support.
Carl Icahn

On Monday, TheStreet highlighted that as Icahn chases $1 billion-plus sized takeover and merger attempts including truck making tie-up between large holdings Navistar ( NAV) and Oshkosh ( OSK), his 2012 fortunes may change starting in January. The famed activist was able to return 37.4% in 2011.

The proxy campaign failure comes after only 23% of Commercial Metals shareholders tendered their holdings to Icahn or $15 a share ahead of a Jan. 10 deadline. "We did not receive 40.1% of the shares, and therefore, as previously disclosed, we will discontinue our proxy fight," said Icahn in a Wednesday statement.

He launched the takeover campaign in late November.

While Icahn contended that his bid would benefit shareholders suffering from a poor international expansion and an unpromising consolidation plan, Commercial Metals told shareholders that the bid was "opportunistic" and "undervalued," coming as key construction markets bottom.

In October, Commercial Metals announced a winding down and sale plan for a large steel mill in Croatia as it consolidates some complicated and unprofitable international operations. About management's new strategy and its confidence that a recovery was beginning for Commercial Metals' construction related earnings, Icahn wrote in a Jan. 4 letter, "This is not the Boy Scouts," meaning that the road for second chances has ended.

On news of the withdrawn proxy campaign, Commercial Metals were falling over 5% to $14 a share in pre-market trading. The company's shares fell nearly 20% in 2011.

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For more on Carl Icahn see his portfolio of stock holdings. For more on Commercial Metals see, TheStreet's portfolio of top yielding metals and mining stocks. To read about Oshkosh and Navistar shares respectively, see 6 mid cap growth stocks to watch for and David Tepper's Appalosa Management Portfolio.

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