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Why Carl Icahn Likes Elon Musk

Tickers in this article: EBAY TSLA

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- In the battle of what to do with eBay's PayPal, Carl Icahn is listening to Elon Musk.

Musk, the electric car entrepreneur who has been seen as something of a legend among Silicon Valley, started PayPal along with the well-traveled venture capitalist Peter Thiel, argues that PayPal is best utilized outside of eBay's umbrella, a change Icahn is pushing. Musk, of course, is CEO and co-founder of Tesla Motors as well as SpaceX.

In an interview on CNBC, Icahn offered his thoughts on the proposed split between PayPal and eBay as well as negative comments about eBay's board of directors. Icahn said he's not alone in charging that PayPal should operate as a separate company from eBay -- Musk does as well.

Icahn referred to Musk as "extremely good," alluding to his past achievements with Tesla, PayPal and SpaceX.

Musk is quoted in a Forbes article earlier this year saying, "It doesn't make sense that a global payment system is a subsidiary of an auction website. It's as if Target owned Visa or something."

These are our capital markets in 2014. No longer goes the days of a company listening to just a corporate raider or activist investor. Instead, the activist investor is now taking advice from Silicon Valley.

The fight of splitting PayPal away from eBay continues to go on, as eBay has continued to reject Icahn's suggestions, and recently rejected his nominees for eBay's board of directors.

Shares of eBay were falling in Monday trading, dropping 0.8% to $58.62.

--Written by Chris Ciaccia in New York

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