Icahn Once Again Gains Upper Hand in Pep Boys Bidding War

Says he's willing to pay $1 billion for Philly-based auto parts retailer.

Turns out Carl Icahn really, really wants to own Pep Boys — Manny, Moe, & Jack.

The Wall Street Journal reports that Icahn — who has been in a bidding war with Bridgestone for control of the Philly-based auto parts, maintenance and repair chain — offered on Wednesday to pay $16.50 per share for the company. Bridgestone’s previous bid was $15.50 per share.

Furthermore: Icahn said he’ll keep outbidding Bridgestone for awhile — informing Pep Boys he would be willing to pay 10 cents more per share than any Bridgestone offer, up to $18.10 a share. He’s willing to pay about $1 billion for the acquisition.

The response of Pep Boys’ board of directors? Yes, please. It announced today that Icahn had presented the superior offer. Bridgestone has until 5 p.m. Thursday to respond.

Pep Boys entered a purchase agreement with Bridgestone in October. (The original per-share price was then just $15.) But Icahn — owner of Auto Plus — stepped in and a bidding war began. Bridgestone would be in position to greatly expand their own businesses by acquiring Pep Boys and its 800 retail outlets. Bridgestone has 2,200 of its own outlets in the U.S., Yahoo! reports, while Icahn’s Auto Plus network has 2,300 stores.

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