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How Compliance Saved Tyco

Joe Mont | May 29, 2013

It was just a little more than a decade ago that Tyco International took its place in the business Hall of Shame, alongside such toxic corporate criminals as Enron, WorldCom, and Adelphia.

Tales of free-spending executives bleeding away at the company's bottom line filled newspapers in 2002 and 2003. CEO Dennis Kozlowski and CFO Mark Swartz were accused of pilfering millions. There was $150 million in sweetheart loans, nearly $450 million in shady, self-benefitting stock transactions, and extravagant perks for themselves and their inner circle (a $2 million birthday party and $6,000 shower curtain that became fodder for late night comedians). There were trials, multi-billion-dollar class-action suits, and jail sentences. Bankruptcy was all but assured for the company.

Today, Tyco has almost fully recovered from both its financial and reputational woes. The man who helmed that turnaround, former CEO Edward Breen, discussed the sweeping changes that saved the company...

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