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26 Just Step out of the Way

In June the board of directors took preliminary steps toward an initial public offering, then ran into a few roadblocks. Warrants held by the lending banks and awarded during the three rounds of private placements now gave them a claim on nearly 25 percent of the shares. Fred questioned the legitimacy of the banks’ claim to the warrants and charged that the banks had reneged on their obligation to return the warrants. Charges and countercharges resulted in open confrontations, with neither side yielding. Meanwhile, in light of the exasperating situation, the public offering was deferred indefinitely.

THE YEAR OF TRANSITION

The year 1975, the third year after beginning the small-package service, marked a watershed ...

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