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Carl Icahn Seeks Court Order For Motorola Documents

Billionaire investor seeks a court order that would force Motorola to turn over documents about its trademark cell-phone business and senior executives.

CHICAGO (AP) -- Billionaire investor Carl Icahn said Monday he's seeking a court order that would force Motorola to turn over documents about its trademark cell-phone business and senior executives.
''Over the past 12 months the statements and predictions of Motorola's management and the board about mobile devices business have too often proven to be wrong,'' Icahn said in a statement.
''We demanded these materials for the purposes of enabling us to investigate whether and to what extent the board of directors of Motorola failed in their duties as directors in supervising management and setting policy and direction of Motorola,'' he said.
Motorola was withholding comment until it had a chance to review any lawsuit filed by Icahn, said spokeswoman Jennifer Erickson.
Icahn plans to use the materials as part of his proxy battle to win four seats on the Schaumburg-based company's board. Motorola prevailed in a proxy battle with Icahn a year ago.
The investor has nominated former Viacom Inc. CEO Frank Biondi, WR Hambrecht & Co. founder and CEO William Hambrecht, MIT professor and semiconductor materials processing expert Lionel Kimerling and Icahn Enterprises CEO Keith Meister for Motorola's board.
Icahn said he will file a lawsuit seeking the documents in the Court of Chancery of the State of Delaware.
Among other materials, Icahn is seeking board documents related to a potential spin-off of the cell-phone unit, the service and selection of Motorola's senior officers and materials related to the use of company aircraft by senior management, board members and their families.
Icahn, who has been steadily increasing his Motorola position, disclosed in a filing earlier this month that he now owns 142,362,000 million shares, or 6.3 percent -- up from 5 percent a month ago.
In a letter to stockholders, Icahn said the company ''assured us during last year's proxy contest that they had a plan to right the ship.''
Instead, he said, the results in the cell-phone division ''are a stockholders' nightmare.'' He favors spinning off the division to stockholders as a wholly separate company with a new CEO.
In January, Motorola told investors that net profit had fallen 84 percent in the final quarter of the year and mobile phone sales were down 38 percent. The company revealed its already diminished market share continued to fall as Nokia and other competitors carved into its sales.
Former Motorola Inc. Chief Executive Ed Zander stepped down at the end of last year under pressure from investors after a disastrous stretch that pushed Motorola into third place in the global cell-phone market and caused it to lose $49 million for the year.
Zander was succeeded Jan. 1 by Greg Brown, who the company announced in February has assumed day-to-day responsibilities of the phone business. The company has indicated it is considering a sale or spinoff of the cell-phone unit.
Shares in the company rose 38 cents to $9.63 in midday trading.
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