Bill Ackman calls Chipotle 'extremely cheap' and says people in his office like the queso

Adam Jeffery | On Events

Bill Ackman, founder and CEO of Pershing Square Capital Management.

Chipotle's largest shareholder Bill Ackman on Wednesday fought back at claims that the fast-casual restaurants' new queso wasn't good and that its sales would disappoint.

Last week, Goldman Sachs said it would pass on Chipotle's stock after the negative response across social media that the company's new queso was "gritty" and "disappointing." The response could translate into weaker same-store sales for the quarter, Goldman analyst Karen Holthouse wrote.

"I'm beginning to believe that Twitter is filled with a bunch of Chipotle short sellers," the Pershing Square CEO said Wednesday.

"People like it in the office. It does not have ... filled with the chemicals that the normal queso does. It was quite an engineering exercise to get this thing done with natural ingredients. People like it, I'm going to try it," he added in an interview on "Halftime Report."

Ackman, who is Chipotle's largest shareholder according to FactSet, said he can't disclose the company's store-by-store results of the queso rollout but "hopes people are going to be pleasantly surprised."

The investor also said he is a "big believer" in Chipotle. He thinks the stock, which is down more than 17 percent this year, is "extremely cheap."

"The stock went from $500 to $300 on a norovirus incident in one store. I think people should take a look at that one," he said.

Although, there are some "weakness missing components on the management team" the company has been filling out those elements, Ackman added.

"They are very responsive and they want this to be an enormous success," he said.


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