Lynn Tilton, the Billionaire CEO of Patriarch Partners, has bought and sold over 150 companies and through her holding company Patriarch Partners currently owns 75 companies employing over 120,000 people. Tilton is credited with savings over 250,000 jobs by buying companies and turning them around. She focuses predominantly on buying “fallen brands”, (e.g. Spiegel, Rand McNally, Hughes Helicopters), and breathes new life into them. That makes Lynn Tilton more than an expert – that makes her a guru on turning around companies. This week on The CEO TV Show, she explained how she does it.
“It starts with the brand,” she began, “because brands still have intrinsic value irrespective of how badly the business is doing. Brand means instant recognition. People love to support familiar underdogs.”
What is the first thing CEO Lynn Tilton does to breathe life back into a fallen brand?
“The first thing to do is bring innovation into the culture. Stagnation means death; innovation means growth,” Tilton explained. “There are a myriad of reasons why a company fails, but usually it is caused by an inability to innovate as their customers change.”
Tilton is committed in her turnaround situations to bringing manufacturing back to America.
“The biggest brand that we need to breathe life back into is ‘Made in America’. People will pay more for our products when they realize Americans still make first class products. We’ve allowed ourselves to be convinced that we don’t make anything of value in America anymore. This has to stop – because it’s not true! We didn’t become the biggest economy in the world because we don’t know how to make things that work. But we have to have a government that has an industrial policy that is committed to protecting the very essence of ‘Made in America’.”
Watch Patriarch Partners CEO Lynn Tilton explain how to rebuild brands in our video interview.