Bill Windsor Built an Advertising Specialties Business in Orlando, Florida

After a year off the busy Park Avenue in Winter Park, Florida, Bill was able to convince wealthy orange grove owner and real estate owner, Jerry Chicone, to rent him a 1,600-square-foot store at 435 Park Avenue South.  The impact was a huge increase in retail sales.

With this move, Bill acquired an advertising specialties business from Tom Bonneville and expanded it into a retail operation.  Bill sold over 100,000 items that could be personalized for businesses, clubs, and more.  Business #9.

Bill’s biggest advertising specialties client was Disney.  Bill sold all of the Do Not Disturb signs and shower caps used in the original hotels at Walt Disney World.

To expand on Park Avenue, Bill needed some money.  With the support of dear old Dad, Bill borrowed $10,000 from Sun First National Bank.  He did manage to repay it.

A fabulous cartoonist, West Reid, did the artwork for The Wear-House.

The business had a number of products that schools could sell for fundraising projects.

Bill Windsor Sold His Publishing and Trade Show Companies in 1981.

In 1981, Don Gandy asked to have dinner with William M. Windsor.  Don was the CEO of a company that was acquiring businesses in the imprinted sportswear industry.

At Alaman’s Mexican restaurant in Dallas, Don wrote something on a little piece of paper and put it in the center of the table.  He told me to take the paper and look at it ONLY if I was interested in selling my imprinted sportswear magazines, trade shows, and conferences.

I had never thought about selling.  I had never considered what the business might be worth.  We were doing $6 million in revenues at the time.

I asked how many zeros were after the range of numbers written on the paper.  I decided I was interested in selling.

Rather than sell to Don Gandy, I hired a publishing consultant, Mark Schrimpf, to do a valuation and seek buyers.  Three large U.S. publishing companies were interested, and I sold to Gralla Publications in October 1981.

I retired.  That lasted for less than a year.

 

Bill Windsor Launched the Imprinted Sportswear Show in New Orleans, Louisiana in March 1980

In March 1980, Bill Windsor launched the Imprinted Sportswear Show in New Orleans, Louisiana.

The staff had grown to over 80 people by 1980.

The businesses moved to a new office on Dallas North Parkway in Dallas, Texas.