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Bloodsport: When Ruthless Dealmakers, Shrewd Ideologues, and Brawling Lawyers Toppled the Corporate Establishment by Robert Teitelman

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Chapter Nine

TOOLS OF COERCION

IN 2009, AT Wasserstein’s memorial service at Lincoln Center, Lipton speculated that the Legend of Bruce began in 1981, during the war over Conoco won by DuPont. It was, Lipton noted, the largest takeover in history at that time. And it was a classic case, he said, “of the complexity and tactical maneuvering that were features of the takeover battles that caught the attention of the nation for most of the decade of the ’80s.” But Lipton left quite a bit out; it was a memorial service, after all, with eulogies and the Preservation Hall jazz band. It was not the time for reservations. Conoco was the culmination of a style of tactical maneuvering in M&A that had begun at least a year earlier, 1980, driven by First ...

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