Borders Hires Jefferies As Restructuring Financial Advisor, Jones Day Is Legal Firm, Another Wipe Out For Ackman Imminent

Tyler Durden's picture

At one point last year Bill Ackman, who had created an entirely separate fund to express his exbuerance in retailer Target, and created a standalone fund PSIV to invest in the same name, was down 99% at the point the fund was unwound. Many had hoped the supposed retail genius' bad luck would end there. Alas, no. Another stock in which Pershing Square now owns 37%, is on the verge of filing bankruptcy. And apparently it can't even afford to hire a decent financial restructuring advisor. According to reports, traditionally creditor-side advisor Jefferies has been retained to represent the company, while Jones Day is legal counsel. Look for a bankruptcy filing in the next week and for another wipe out for Mr Ackman.


Borders Group tapped Jefferies & Co as its financial adviser as the
book seller pushes publishers to extend repayment schedules and looks
for new sources of liquidity. The company hired Jones Day as its
attorney in 2009 and the law firm is still understood to be working with
Borders as it plots a possible restructuring.

We still have some of the paperbacks that Ackman used to regale his investors with, demonstrating his retail acumen when he was seeking lambs for the LP slaughter in PS IV. Luckily, investments in more recent paperback fiction such as Target and GGP are for the time being, faring better, although considering the start of the retail decline so aptly predicted by Howard Davidowitz, those who have ridden the mall train with Bill, are strongly urged to get off at the next station.

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Salinger's picture

here's  the clip where Margaret Brennan of Bloomberg with Ian Bremmer of Eurasia Group  had a good laugh earlier today about the reading of the Constitution in the House of Representatives (except they spliced that segment out) - you can see the rather sloppy splice if you scroll to minute 5:20 (they need to hire williambanzai7 to do their vid edits) 

What is so pathetic is that not even CNBS alters their video clips

goldmiddelfinger's picture

I was watching at the time but only because I love Margie

Salinger's picture

Didn't you mean Marge


that's what Keene called her this morning - she was not amused

goldmiddelfinger's picture

Exactly. Love a woman that spits razor blades.

economessed's picture

Yet the stock reaches escape velocity after hours.

goldmiddelfinger's picture

Ackman. Another one hit wonder. How's Paulson's long gold play working out?

Red Neck Repugnicant's picture

Ackman is NOT a one hit wonder.

Without parsing through his portfolio, I can immediately think of GGP and his famous MBIA/ABK short - both of which were amazingly profitable and very prescient.  He was shorting bond insurers long before anyone thought about it. 

Don't count Ackman out with Borders. Ackman knew in October that this would likely happen after the holidays.  In October, he was granted millions of warrants in Border's, cashable at .65/each anytime before 2014.

There's a reason it popped after hours, rather than collapsing.  As always, news to us is not news to them.


SMG's picture

Well I find a little comfort in the fact that people much wealthier than me make bad investments too.

Of course if the market does crash I can still make out, where as this guy, not so much.

hambone's picture

Thank the lord - I was wondering where we'd find another 300, 500, 1000 empty big boxes round the country for all the "recovery" business' looking to expand!!!

Pheww, shortage of CRE averted!!!

Cdad's picture

Simon Property Group has given the signal that RIETs are about to start rotting...big time.  The illusion that all is well in the commercial property group is about to shatter...not like I'm breaking any news with this.

Heck, Tyler wrote my favorite ZH story just yesterday pointing out the defaults commencing in this group. 

For those of you maddened by the IYR manipulation game...vengeance is at hand...

hambone's picture


I like your thinking but I liked it all the same when SRS came down from peak of $1500 to $40...I didn't like it too much more when SRS hit $30 and I gave in taking the loss.  Now that SRS (like almost all short vehicles) is sitting near all time low of $17.41...all the way up to $18.22.

I think I'll wait to see a 20dma break on any of these before touching them w/ a 10ft poll.  Nice thing is for SRS, it hasn't broke the 20 day since $400 and is now only a buck and a half from doing so.

Every bit as amazing as CRE REIT prices is the RUT.  Up from 342 bottom to 800 now.  Heck, it's up 27% from Aug 23 (588 to 800).  It's now flattening and looking roll worthy...TZA or others are similiarly battered as per SRS...just break that 20dma and I'll hop on and use it as the backstop.  That's small business primarily with US of A exposure...just imagine what happens if the goobermint punchbowl gets knocked over!!!

Cdad's picture


I have a piece of that crap SRS in my portfolio, too.  However, I did not say buy the SRS.  Instead, I am recommending shorting directly those RIETs most loved by criminal syndicate bankers everywhere.  They have been holding these things as dividend instruments for 2 years now.  They are just starting to roll over now.

Selecting the right one for playing Whack-a-Mole is a matter of discovering the ones that are most widely held.


virgilcaine's picture

Luv that Marg Brennan , one hot financial vixen.

AR15AU's picture

I'm sure everyone here is too savvy to fall for the Gift Card scam. But do warn any relatives who received them for Christmas to spend them, stat. I remember when Sharper Image went under, the gift card holders were screwed.

Mercury's picture

Ackman, Eddie Lampert et al have just picked the wrong era it seems like to try and be retail turnaround artists.

What did we learn the other day 21(?) sq. ft . of retail space for every human being in America?

Art Vandelay's picture

The interesting thing about this per capita retail space statistic: this is many times larger than any other country in the world - like by a factor of 10.

Common_Cents22's picture

How did he lose 99% in Target?

Cursive's picture


Leverage.  Lots of it.  This is also how we've reached 1275 on the SPX, so if you or any loved ones you know are long....

Problem Is's picture

Classic Tyler...
Cynicism and wit...

The Borders anchoring our downtown will make a fine grocery store or Goodwill...