Negotiating for Anne Klein
As I mentioned briefly in the previous chapter, I hired Bob Oliver to negotiate a partnership agreement with Anne Klein and Gunther Oppenheim for equity in the Anne Klein Company. These conversations went on for about a year before we were able to close the deal and confirm my position as president on behalf of Takihyo Company Ltd. in October 1973. The transaction left Anne and Gunther each with 25 percent of the Anne Klein Company. I held a 50 percent stake, giving Takihyo Company Ltd. majority equity and freeing me as a manager to implement any necessary changes quickly and effectively. Although the Anne Klein Company had a solid customer base and was earning a fair amount, there were also gross inefficiencies. After completing an analysis during the process of purchasing Takihyo’s stake, I knew the different areas in which I had to streamline and tone the Anne Klein Company.
When I get involved in a new endeavor, I want to know how information traverses the corporate structure. I enjoy digging up inconsistencies and finding solutions. Therefore, I wanted to learn more about the nuts and bolts of the business when I first arrived in the United States and began my conversations with Anne and Gunther. I wanted to see how everything in the company worked: from the way that management treated subordinates to how distribution and warehousing functioned. Even if Anne Klein was on its way to becoming a name brand in the field, I did not want to ...