Monday, June 11, 2007

Lampert Looking For $3 -$5 Billion

CNBC reports that Eddie Lampert, Chairman of Sears Holdings (SHLD) is raising money through his former firm Goldman Sachs (GS)for a hedge fund. For folks looking for him to begin to spend Sears' cash hoard, this is real good news.

It clearly means he sees investments he wants to make out there. I my opinion it smells of him wanting to do a mega deal and is adding dollars to his coffers. Between the money he raises, the $4 billion in Sears cash he has available and multiples of that in potential additional debt, he will now be able to do a much larger deal. It was not clear if this was a new fund or more cash for ESL Investments, the fund he has racked up 29% annual return for over a decade with. No matter either way. It does give Lampert the ability between the various entities he controls to take a controlling stake or buy completely a much larger company now. I would love to see him get his hands on the Gap (GPS) now. Still no new CEO there, sales have stabilized and great value in both cash on hand and real estate. He could do wonders there.

Coming off the heals of his recent Citi (C) purchase and the revelation he is back buying Sears shares, it is clear he is in a buying mood.

The fund requires a $25 million minimum investment, a 5 year lock up and a 6 month notice to withdraw. I am thinking about investing but can't seem to find that $25 million I had laying around this weekend.

As a Sears shareholder, it does make thing very interesting.

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