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Carl Icahn takes 10% stake in Netflix

October 31, 2012|By Dawn C. Chmielewski
  • Netflix's sagging stock price created an investment opportunity for billionaire investor Carl Icahn.
Netflix's sagging stock price created an investment opportunity… (Charles Krupa / Associated…)

Activist investor Carl Icahn has amassed a nearly 10% stake in Netflix Inc., according to a statement filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The billionaire has been using a variety of funds to amass about 5.5 million shares and call options since early September, including shares underlying call options, according to Wednesday's filing, taking advantage of the company's fluctuating stock price.

Icahn could not be reached for comment, but in a statement he reported that Netflix holds "significant strategic value for a variety of significantly larger companies" that are competing with one another to take advantage of new forms of distribution via the Internet and portable devices.

Wall Street reacted enthusiastically to the news of Icahn's investment, driving the price up to $79.24 -- a gain of nearly 14% in the day's trading.

The company's stock has been sagging since the spring, amid investor concern over slowing subscriber growth in the U.S.  Just last week, the stock dropped 11% in a single day after Netflix revised its guidance for its domestic video streaming service earlier this month.

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