'WHY SHOULD WHITE GUYS HAVE ALL THE FUN?' by Reginald F. Lewis

'WHY SHOULD WHITE GUYS HAVE ALL THE FUN?'

How Reginald Lewis Created a Billion-Dollar Business Empire
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KIRKUS REVIEW

 A serviceable biography of the black attorney/businessman whose accomplishments set a challenging standard for tycoons of any ethnic background. Before he died of brain cancer at age 50 early in 1993, Lewis had partially completed a memoir of his remarkable life and career. Drawing on these jottings, as well as on extensive interviews with his subject's close-knit family, friends, and associates, USA Today correspondent Walker offers a warts-and-all portrait of an irresistible force. From his East Baltimore boyhood on, the ultra- industrious Lewis planned, even schemed, to make himself a world- class success. Barely an average student at Virginia State, he finessed his way into Harvard Law School without even taking the entrance exam. After a two-year stint with the top-drawer Manhattan firm Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison, he struck out on his own. Serving a lengthy apprenticeship as a specialist in minority- enterprise small-business-investment corporations, Lewis learned enough to become a player in the great takeover game that preoccupied Wall Street during the 1980s. After a couple of false starts, he masterminded a leveraged buyout of McCall Pattern Co., which in a few years yielded him and fellow investors a 90-to-1 return. With a little help from his friend Michael Milken, he went on to engineer another coup--the LBO for nearly one billion dollars of Beatrice International Foods. At the time of his death, Lewis had the Paris-based enterprise operating on an enviably profitable basis throughout Europe. This account of Lewis's achievements emphasizes his tough- minded, goal-oriented approach to personal and philanthropic as well as financial affairs. (16 pages of 28 photos, not seen) (First serial to Black Enterprise)

Pub Date: Nov. 18th, 1994
ISBN: 0-471-04227-7
Page count: 256pp
Publisher: Wiley
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1st, 1994




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