Is It Payoff Time At Thomson?

Alain Prestat disdains the usual perks of his CEO post. Lunches at swank Parisian restaurants? A waste of time, sniffs the trim, athletic, 44-year-old head of French consumer electronics powerhouse Thomson Multimedia. First-class travel? Only for softies. And while most CEOs delegate inspections of far-flung factories, Prestat visited all 39 Thomson sites in 16 countries within a year of taking over in 1992. "I never stop," he says. "I fly to Osaka like getting on the Metro."

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