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Friday, May 2, 2014

UPDATED: Schwartz hits Wolf on his business practices; Wolf responds

Posted By on Fri, May 2, 2014 at 12:21 PM

A day after she took Democratic gubernatorial frontrunner Tom Wolf to task during a debate at Franklin and Marshall college, Congresswoman Allyson Schwartz released an ad Friday about "the full picture of Tom Wolf and his business record."

“Tom Wolf’s ads tell a nice story, but like any fairy tale, the story simply isn't true,” Mark Bergman, spokesman for the Schwartz campaign said. “Tom Wolf is just a typical business executive looking out for himself first. That's not different, that's what corporate CEOs do. He wasn’t a different type of businessman and won’t be a different type of Governor. Pennsylvania deserves the truth, not just a pretty picture.”

According to a release from the Schwartz campaign:

"In 2006, Tom Wolf loaded up his company with millions of dollars in debt in order to take a leveraged buyout of $20 million. The result was that in 2009, the company couldn’t keep pace with the debt that Wolf’s leveraged buyout created, and a majority of Wolf Organization employees lost their jobs.
Wolf told the Central Penn Business Journal in 2009 that the only issue at the time was the debt load.

The Business Journal reported, “When Wolf returned to the company, its only issue was its debt load, he [Wolf] said.

He and his partners were able to recapitalize the firm with an infusion of cash, which gave it the financial ability to implement this expansion project, he said. ‘What we had was a great company (that) ... had already figured out how to make money with the reduced sales that are out there in the housing market right now.’”

“Allyson Schwartz is a proven, tested leader who has a record of standing up for Pennsylvania families. As Governor, she will bring that experience and leadership to shake up the status quo in Harrisburg and get important things done for Pennsylvania,” Bergman added.

The ad quotes a piece published last month in the Philadelphia Inquirer about the leveraged buyout of Wolf's cabinet-making company that netted he and his cousins $20 million each, funded at least partially by debt the company took on to make the payments. When the company began having trouble paying down the debt, Wolf infused cash back into the company and resumed his role as CEO.

UPDATE: Tom Wolf responded to the attacks this afternoon with an ad of his own featuring employees of his business crediting Wolf with saving the business when it was ready to close.

"In 2009, the company was about to shut down but Tom bought the business back," General Manager and 23-year-employee Mike O'Brien says in the commercial. "

Adds Logistics administrator Christine Fisher, "Tom changed the business model and saved jobs."

You can see the ad here:

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