Source: Smart Business Network 1/15/2008

Pampered Chef CEO in Smart Business Network

Every year, thousands of investors flock to Berkshire's annual meeting to hear the "Oracle of Omaha" hold forth on the prospects for investing success in the coming year. But on this early September day in 2002, Buffet wanted to hear what Doris Christopher had to say.

Just a week earlier, the $36 billion dollar man had never heard of Christopher. Now he wanted to know if the founder and CEO of The Pampered Chef would sell her company -- a direct seller of 225 high-end kitchen tools including everything from vegetable peelers and cutting boards to skillets and fondue sets -- to Berkshire.

But it wasn't the cooking accessories that drew the interest of Buffet, whose culinary tastes run toward a simple steak and Dairy Queen ice cream. Instead, it was the fact that The Pampered Chef had grown by more than 230 percent since 1995, had no debt, offered juicy profit margins (estimated as high as 25 percent pre-tax) and boasted a following of 70,000 dedicated sales reps, or "kitchen consultants" as the company calls them.

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