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I bought PLPC shares based on the good key metrics (value).
I have now become worried about the ownership structure. Seeing that a certain Barbara Ruhlman owns +30% of the stock without being the founder makes me feel very unconfortable. She seems to be the wife of the CEO. Is she related to Tom Peterson the founder, who now owns much less than this lady. In what way did she contribute to the huge value creation that her holding implies. I cannot believe that she helped build 30% of PLPCs value.
Looks very dangerous to me. Anyone knows more?
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She presumably is the wife. It's essentially a family business. Is this dangerous?
1) They could take the whole thing private and we'd have to accept what they offered, by which time the share price would have fallen.
2) They haven't been Public for long, so one hopes they will be using capital to try to grow the business, the family making a fortune meanwhile. But we gain also.

I imagine they are more in the second category (Good). And they have made a few public statements in recent times (Good), whereas initially, they seemed bemused by being Public, and just meandered along (Bad). I bought ages ago on value - wish I hadn't, really, but hung in, expecting greater efficiencies. They have a high PE for a commodity seller and I think the lack of profit is due to second rate management in their overseas sites. And they haven't the strength of character to spend time improving that (Bad). That's how I see it. A family business that's comfortable not ambitious.

I keep hoping but need better signals than I've been getting. It's not the wife-thing that worries - it's the complacency.

My 2c worth.
Malc
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Barbara Peterson Ruhlman, 73, is the mother of current CEO and board member Robert Ruhlman, 49. She's also the mother of Randall Ruhlman, who is also a board member.

She is the widow of Jon R. Ruhlman, who served as President and Chairman of the company. He passed away in 2004.

I presume she's the daughter (sister?) of founder Tom Peterson. Peterson founded the company in 1947 and Ruhlman joined in 1952, becoming president and then chairman in the 1950's, 60's and 70's.

She appears to do a lot of philanthropy work in the Cleveland area, and serves as trustee for a couple of trust funds for the Peterson family and (presumeably) her grandchildren, Robert and Randall's kids.

I have no idea how trustworthy she is a steward of the company. As was pointed out already, it's definitely a family affair.

LE, never a shareholder, but the company's local and I've had it on my watch list for a few years...
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Funny: I knew the mother had lots of shares, in fact, I think a majority holding, but she sold them to the company some months back (on finding this lady STILL had lots of shares and lived at the CEO's address, I assumed, incorrectly it seems, she was another person, ie the wife.
Glad to be corrected.
Thanks.
MC
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Yeah, that Beta Drive address they list as their mailing address in all the SEC filings is actually the business address of the company.
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Yeah, that Beta Drive address they list....
....has a Granny flat.

This company should do better.
It has rather simple products, but that means that for a competitor to import (Cheap) copies would presumably end more expensive than the home grown product. So it should have an advantage.

I suppose a lot depends on mankind continuing to spread his footprint over the face of the planet - and that's slowed locally.

Maybe they should start a product to put all cables underground, and demonstate its ascetic advantages.

MC



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