The View From IbmIra Sager
In July, it looked as if Louis V. Gerstner Jr. had earned a well-deserved rest after two years at the helm of IBM. The giant was no longer listing, and cash was pouring in. On July 5, Big Blue closed the $3.5 billion deal to buy Lotus Development Corp., and the stock price was about double what it had been at the start of Gerstner's reign--making the CEO's options worth approximately $32.5 million. In August, Gerstner even took time for a five-day family vacation in Italy--sandwiched between calls on European customers.
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