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Icahn to put shine back on Apple?

Maverick investor eyes iMaker, believes larger buyback can lift stock to $700

Icahn has a reputation for stirring up boardrooms.
Icahn has a reputation for stirring up boardrooms.

Maverick billionaire investor Carl Icahn yesterday announced via Twitter that he has acquired an undisclosed number of shares in Apple Inc and that he believes the Cupertino-based iPhone maker to be undervalued, online media reported.

Icahn has minted a reputation for upsetting company boardrooms including those at Yahoo!, Motorola and Time Warner. His most recent interest has been in Dell Inc, which he is suing in a Delaware court to prevent its founder Michael Dell securing a change in shareholder voting rules that would allow the company to go private.

While the size of his Apple stake remains a mystery, he described it as a "large position" and his statements sent positive ripples through the market as the company's share price rose 4.75%, to close at $489.57.

Icahn is new to Twitter, having opened his account in June. His tweets yesterday included a claim that he had had a "nice conversation" with Apple CEO Tim Cook, in which he urged an escalation in the company's share repurchase initiative.   

According to Reuters, Icahn believes Apple stock could reach $700 a share if Cook were to take his advice, which would leave the shares only slightly shy of their September 2012 peak of $702.10.