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o .-SESP V/ "How," asked the Wall Street Journal on December 23, 1963, "does an attractive maiden fend off the unwanted advances of a wealthy suitor? Often by eloping with someone else." The maiden in the WSJ article was Garrett Corporation, a big Los Angeles maker of gas turbines and "environmental controls," principally in the aerospace industry. The wealthy suitor was Curtiss-Wright Corporation, which had asked for tenders of some 47% of Garrett's stock—enough to gain working control. And the someone else was Signal Oil and Gas Company, a client of our Los Angeles Office. The article told of the financial in-fighting that followed Curtiss-Wright's advances, and it made fascinating reading. We have a sequel to tell —a story about a few long days in October that year when a crew of Los Angeles Office accountants strove mightily to win on another front. As a story it could have come from Omaha or Birmingham, from Buffalo or Orange County—you don't have to be on the staff very long before you have your own tale of working on X assignment—Saturdays, Sundays, and past midnight. And though psychologists might say you can't perform effectively beyond a certain level of fatigue, it's amazing what self-winding our people can do to keep up a high level of performance under do-or-die conditions. In most cases, the heroes are unsung; but the records are there to confound the man who comes new on the engagement next year and tries to puzzle out—"how in the world did those fellows get a job that size done in such a short time?" We recalled Signal-Garrett recently (it was an SEC engagement and involved several accounting questions that were batted around the Executive Office) and we asked the men who did the work to recall "how it was." They came back at us, despite the intervening years, with vivid details. Monday, 8:00 am Rudy Greipel told us how it started, on Monday, October 21, 1963. "I was the senior in charge of the Signal audit. As I drove to work that morning, I was thinking about which assistants I could release, because our interim work was nearly finished, and I forgot to tune in E. E Hutton's business news on the car radio. I realized this as I pulled into the parking lot. Oh well, I thought, probably nothing exciting happened over the weekend anyway." But it had. Ted Middendorf, driving in on the Hollywood freeway, heard the news that Rudy missed, and on it, as it had been for the past month, was the offer by Curtiss-Wright Corporation to buy Garrett stock. But also on the news was a report of a possible merger of Signal and Garrett. Ted was exploring with other assistants the effects such a merger might have on their work assignments when Rudy got off the elevator at the eleventh floor. As 10
No canned commodity: Recollections of a brief but strenuous engagement that started with the merger desires of Signa Oil and Gas Company and the Garrett Corporation
Signa Oil and Gas Co.
Consolidation and merger of corporations
Greipel, Rudolph C.
Middendorf, William T.
McCormick, John C.
Kabot, Ronald H.
Haskins & Sells. Los Angeles Office
H&S Reports, Vol. 04, (1967 winter), p. 10-15
|Source||Originally published by: Haskins & Sells|
|Rights||Copyright and permission to republish held by: Deloitte|
|Format||PDF page image with corrected OCR scanned at 400 dpi|
|Collection||Deloitte Digital Collection|
|Digital Publisher||University of Mississippi Library. Accounting Collection|