First the new CEO will bring in his team of experts/direct reports with expensive pay packages
Then there will be a top down "strategic review"
Then there will be reductions in guidance
Then there will be changes in accounting procedures
Then there will be earnings re-statements
Then there will be "non cash" asset impairment charges
Some where in there will be congressional hearings
There will also be FTC investigations into price fixing
Oh and they will need to roll over some of that debt
And lest we forget... they will need a new growth strategy since the last one wont work anymore
None of this is good for the stock price in the short or intermediate term.
Is the bench strength at VRX so poor that they can't find a Senior VP (or Board Member) that can speak at an Investor's conference? The fact that Pearson can't find a qualified internal candidate to give an investor's presentation should be cause for serious concern to investors.
The fact that JPM is willing to go along with this - rather than simply telling VRX to present another time - speaks very poorly of their objectivity as well.
Good points, and tax loss selling is clearly a valid strategy - I did some of it myself at the end of the year in some other names. However, I don't recall Ackman's funds engaging in tax loss selling in the past. Perhaps he did, I just don't recall it. He certainly has had underwater positions at the end of the year before. Ackman might be under pressure from the shareholders in his funds or perhaps there are other factors. However, of all the things that don't quite smell right at VRX, Ackman's tax loss selling is the least of the concerns.