In the 1980's, American financier, corporate raider and private equity investor Carl Icahn acquired something of a bad rap, maligned as a "greenmailer" and "fast-buck artist." Icahn made a name for himself by buying up controlling positions in his targets, then forcing these companies to pay a premium just to get rid of him.

Nowadays, Icahn prefers to portray himself as a "billionaire Robin Hood," a shareholder activist who puts pressure on companies to increase shareholder's value. Icahn has used his equity stake to influence the direction of large corporations like Time Warner and Nabisco, and in the process, reaped substantial profits.

So it could be interesting to see what's in Icahn's portfolio, considering his proclivity for enacting change in the companies he owns, and track record of success. And because of the SEC's 13F filing regulation, we can, at least four times a year.

Institutional investment managers overseeing upwards of $100 million must report their holdings quarterly, on Form 13F, thereby making their portfolios public. 

A look inside reveals that as of the end of 2010, Icahn Management LP had increased its stake in Motorola to 203.3 million shares, just before it split into Motorola Holdings and Motorola Solutions -- that's up from 119.8 million at the end of 2009. His other top holdings include Biogen Idec (Nasdaq: BIIB) and Genzyme (Nasdaq: GENZ).

Here are Icahn's top 10 portfolio holdings as of the end of Q4 2010. (Click here to access free, interactive tools to analyze all of these stocks.)

Company

Shares Held-09/30/2010

Shares Held-12/31/2010

% Change in Shares Held

% of Portfolio

Biogen Idec

12,860,205.00

12,860,205.00

0.00%

15.33%

Genzyme

10,480,000.00

10,480,000.00

0.00%

13.26%

Chesapeake Energy (NYSE: CHK)

16,643,030.00

20,880,627.00

25.46%

9.62%

Lions Gate Entertainment (NYSE: LGF)

35,713,655.00

35,713,655.00

0.00%

4.13%

Amylin Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq: AMLN)

12,971,328.00

14,381,925.00

10.87%

3.76%

Mentor Graphics (Nasdaq: MENT)

12,896,232.00

12,896,232.00

0.00%

2.75%

The Hain Celestial Group (Nasdaq: HAIN)

5,040,577.00

5,351,331.00

6.17%

2.57%

Lawson Software (Nasdaq: LWSN)

13,159,546.00

13,581,946.00

3.21%

2.23%

Take-Two Interactive Software (Nasdaq: TTWO)

9,844,502.00

9,844,502.00

0.00%

2.15%

Regeneron Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq: REGN)

2,444,081.00

2,444,081.00

0.00%

1.43%

Interactive Chart: Press Play to compare changes in analyst ratings over the last two years for the top six stocks mentioned above. Analyst ratings sourced from Zacks Investment Research. Note: The numbers on top of items represent the forward P/E ratio, if available.


Kapitall's Eben Esterhuizen and Alicia Sellitti do not own shares of any companies mentioned.

Chesapeake Energy is a Motley Fool Inside Value selection. Take-Two Interactive Software is a Motley Fool Rule Breakers selection. The Fool owns shares of Take-Two Interactive Software. Motley Fool Alpha owns shares of Chesapeake Energy. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.