Trading was halted briefly this afternoon in shares of nutrition and weight-control firm Herbalife Ltd. (NYSE: HLF) before the company announced that it had reached an agreement with activist investor Carl Icahn under which the company will expand its board membership from 9 to 11 immediately before Herbalife's annual shareholders meeting and the board will nominate two individuals designated by Icahn to fill the new slots.
Icahn and his company, Icahn Enterprises Holdings LP (NASDAQ: IEP) and other related companies currently own about 13.6% of Herbalife's outstanding shares. Icahn has the right under today's agreement to expand his ownership to 25% of the outstanding common stock. In exchange, Icahn and his companies have agreed to "certain standstill provisions and to vote their shares in support of all of the Board's director nominees."
Herbalife shares had been trading up all day and jumped about another dollar when trading was re-started. Shares are trading at around $49.55, up 5.6%, in a 52-week range of $24.24 to $73.00.
Filed under: 24/7 Wall St. Wire, Corporate Governance, Food, Shareholder Issues Tagged: featured, HLF, IEP