Family Dollar (NYSE:FDO) should be sold immediately, said activist investor Carl Icahn, who is also demanding three seats on the company's board of directors.
Less than two weeks after disclosing that he'd taken a 9.4 percent stake in Family Dollar, Icahn threatened to rally shareholders to oust the entire board if action is not taken in a letter to Family Dollar CEO Howard Levine.
Referencing a dinner discussion with Levine on Wednesday, Icahn noted "a strong difference of opinion as to the future of our company" and said that "it is imperative that Family Dollar be put up for sale immediately."
Earlier this month, Family Dollar adopted a shareholder rights plan, or "poison pill," to deter a hostile takeover after Icahn said the chain should merge with competitor Dollar General.
In the letter filed with the SEC, Icahn said Family Dollar has "consistently underperformed its peers," adding that he believes "an overwhelming majority of the company's shareholders would be in favor of a sale."
In response, Family Dollar said it is open to "constructively communicating" with its shareholders in an effort to enhance the company's value. "As previously announced, the Company is undertaking an in-depth business review to identify opportunities to strengthen our value proposition, increase operational efficiencies and improve financial performance," the company said in a statement. "While this business review is ongoing, we continue to take immediate, strategic actions as appropriate to improve our performance. We are confident that these steps will position Family Dollar to deliver stronger returns for our shareholders."
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