AKRON, Ohio — Billionaire investor Carl Icahn has signaled an interest in making a large purchase of voting shares from one of the country’s largest electric utilities, which is currently under investigation for its role in an Ohio bribery scandal.
Akron-based FirstEnergy officials announced Thursday during an annual investor call that it received a letter from Icahn Capital LP on Tuesday saying the company has a “present good faith intention” to buy more than $184 million in voting shares but less than $920 million.
FirstEnergy’s stock price reached $35.11 in midafternoon trading Thursday after opening at $31.59.
The company does not know what Icahn’s intentions are or whether he has purchased stock to this point, FirstEnergy Chief Financial Officer John Taylor said.
A message seeking comment was left with Icahn.
FirstEnergy is a target of investigations by the U.S. Department of Justice and the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. The company has been accused of secretly funding a $60 million bribery scheme involving the former Ohio House speaker and others to win passage of a $1 billion bailout for two Ohio nuclear power plants operated by a wholly owned subsidiary.