Herbalife Chairman and CEO Michael O. Johnson responded today to questions regarding hedge fund manager William Ackman’s claims about Herbalife by saying, “The allegation that Herbalife is a pyramid scheme is bogus. Make no mistake: Today’s announcement isn’t about Herbalife’s business model. It’s about Bill Ackman’s business model.”
Here’s what we know:
- An extraordinary number of puts on our stock are due to expire this Friday. We previously learned this activity was pegged to some kind of "significant event."
- Mr. Ackman suddenly announced today that he will make a presentation on Herbalife on Thursday, the day before the puts expire.
- Our CFO this morning asked Mr. Ackman to allow us to participate in his presentation. Mr. Ackman declined.
- We have been informed that Mr. Ackman has shorted our stock for the past 7 to 9 months.
- Our stock dropped almost 15 percent today following Mr. Ackman’s announcement.
We urge the SEC to investigate these series of events to protect the rights of investors. This appears to be yet another attempt to illegally manipulate the market by overzealous short-sellers.
We’ve been in business for 32 years. We have millions of customers worldwide. We don’t pay to recruit distributors. And just today, we announced a $100 million Herbalife manufacturing facility in North Carolina that will employ 500 people.
We have one of the greatest health nutrition product lines in the world and a direct-selling business opportunity for part-time or full-time income.
We are incredibly proud of this company.