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November 29 – December 6, 2007 Edition
Pershing Hedge Fund
In Borders Group
NEW YORK, NY/11/23/07–Pershing Square Capital Management LP, a $300 million+ activist hedge fund, has increased its holdings in the U.S. bookseller Borders Group Inc to 17.1 percent from 11.7. Pershing upped its share to 11.7% in October, then barely a month later, increased the stake to 17.1% (about 10.1 million shares). The transaction was included in an amended SEC document filed earlier this month, and first reported in the media by Reuters.
Pershing is managed by Bill Ackman, who began his career as a real estate investor and mortgage broker. His investment firm, Gotham Partners, launched in 1993, was involved in a series of lawsuits related to a failed merger between one of the firm’s holdings and investigations by the New York Attorney General and the Securities and Exchange Commission, according to Stockpickr.com. Gotham Partners folded as a result, but Ackman re-established under the name Pershing Square Capital Management in late 2003. In November 2006, Ackman revealed that Pershing Square had acquired more than 10% of Borders Group, Inc. and simultaneously increased its share to more than 5% in rival Barnes & Noble, Inc, Stockpickr says. Pershing also holds interests in restaurant chains Wendy’s International, Inc. and McDonald’s Corp.
According to Stockpickr.com, Ackman told Nation’s Restaurant News: “We buy things when they are discounted, and once they reach the potential of what we think they are worth, we sell. It could take months, or it could take years. That is our business.”
Headquartered in Ann Arbor, MI, Borders Group, Inc., is a publicly held company with 2006 consolidated sales of $4.1 billion. Our stock trades on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol BGP. Borders Group operates over 500 Borders superstores in the U.S.; 70 Borders stores outside the U.S., located primarily in the U.K. and the Pacific Rim; 30 Books etc. stores throughout Great Britain; and over 530 stores in the Waldenbooks Specialty Retail segment. Borders Group has also acquired London-based Paperchase Products Limited, a retailer of stationery, cards and gifts with approximately 100 locations outside the U.S., including stand-alone stores and concessions. There are also more than 260 Paperchase shops located within U.S. Borders superstores. Online shopping is also available through www.borders.com. The company employs 32,000 people.
For the third fiscal quarter ending November 3, 2007, Borders Group, Inc.reported total consolidated sales from continuing operations of $805.2 million, up 5.3% over a year ago. Comparable store sales increased in all business segments for the second consecutive.
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