“If you don’t have integrity, you have nothing. You can’t buy it. You can have all the money in the world, but if you are not a moral and ethical person, you really have nothing.”–Henry Kravis
Since the Board saw fit to slander ATD on a public forum we see it as only fitting that we use a public forum to tell everyone including our competitors that there is not a man or woman that we would rather work for and in fact, we won’t work for anyone else. ATD is a man that is the personification of integrity, honesty, hard work, philanthropy and character. To try and slander this man in a public forum with lies, half truths and misleading information is more than just wrong, it is criminal. When you try to discredit this man to the very people that know him best is more than just ill-advised, it is futile.
We know this man and he knows us, do you really think for one minute that we believe any of the garbage that spews from your website? We don’t trust you, we don’t like you and we want you to go away as quickly as possible. What arrogance you have in thinking that you know how to run this company better than ATD and his senior management. Mr. Weiner, Mr. Cowan and Mr. Gebaide, you have a total of 18 months of experience combined in our company and our industry. ATD and his senior management have 300 years of experience with this company and this industry.
It is clear to all of us that your repeated comments about poor profits, declining profits etc…are simply laying the ground work for a trumped up reason to fire ATD for cause. You would have us believe the company is not making money, you would have us believe that the company is involved in reckless spending. Your words are insulting when you say
The Board voted for the increased bonus pool, even though after spending hundreds of millions of dollars on new stores and renovations in the past few years, the Company’s profit margins for the year are expected to be down for the fifth year in a row and net profits are expected to be approximately flat with 2012 results and consistently down since 2008.
Are you expecting us to send you a big thank you card for paying us bonuses despite profits being down? When you handed the nine shareholders $300 million a few weeks ago did you say to them that you were giving them a $300 million dividend despite profits being down?
Is spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on PR firms, search firms, lawyers and consultants a wise use of profits or did you pay them despite profits being down? You have shutdown Revere and Waltham, two stores that are built and ready to go that could be generating profits for us. The BOD has wasted more of our profits with reckless spending in five months than ATD has ever done.
The fact of the matter is that our 7.2% profit margin leads the region in our industry. We have built or completely renovated 25 stores since ATD became CEO in 2008. We have created jobs throughout New England and have expanded into new markets and have the competition following our business model. You make unsubstantiated claims of profits being down in a public forum and expect everyone to believe it simply because you said it. When we build new stores or renovate them it is NOT reckless spending, in fact it is not even spending, it is an investment in the future of the Company. If you knew us and our industry you would understand this. We have absorbed many manufacturers price increases because, as ATD says, the Company can easier absorb these then the customers can. What this has accomplished is increased market share and a loyal following of customers, again investing in the future.
Please don’t dare try to blame ATD or his management team for your shortcomings as a Board of directors. Your attempts to erode our faith and confidence in our management team are falling far too short. You still haven’t figured out, after five months, that we are united in our support for our company and its management team. Have you thought for a minute what would happen if you fired ATD or any executive from this company? The backlash would be swift and decisive. You have underestimated us many times, do not underestimate our resolve in this matter.
The power of the people is greater than the people in power