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Peace and Profit

For anyone who isn’t sick by now of all of the Woodstock nostalgia as the music festival’s 25th anniversary celebration approaches, the Learning Annex next week will offer a course on the Westside titled “How to Make $$$$ in Multi-Level Marketing.”

The course features “ ‘60s legend Jerry Rubin,” a West Los Angeles businessman. Before discovering capitalism, Rubin was one of the nation’s leading Woodstock-era radicals and a defendant in the famous Chicago 7 trial.

According to the catalogue, Rubin “has accurately predicted the most important trends of the past three decades.”

On another Woodstock matter, it seems that for a fair number of people, the soft spot for Woodstock is limited.

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A New Jersey company, Recollections, which sells framed displays featuring Woodstock tickets, has been deluged with people eager to sell their 25-year-old tickets. The going rate is $50 to $200, depending on the condition. Partner Tom Beaber says sales of the Woodstock items are decent, but “I wouldn’t say we’re going to retire from this.”

Cashing Out

Institutional shareholders of IDB Communications are unhappy the company agreed last week to swap each IDB share for about $10 in LDDS Communications stock, especially because IDB shares were trading at more than $20 earlier this year.

For the telecommunications company’s officers, it’s a much better deal. According to IDB’s proxy, a clause that pays their salaries through 1996--with the company picking up the tab for taxes--kicks in if there is a change in control. Chairman Jeffrey Sudikoff will get $1.6 million total for 1995 and 1996, and President Edward R. Cheramy will get $1.3 million, the document says.

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Sleeping Giant Awakens

Celebrity infomercial king Anthony Robbins, author of a bestseller called “Personal Power,” is on the verge of turning on the legal power.

Robbins, the San Diego area self-help lecturer made famous by late-night commercials hosted by former football player Fran Tarkenton and actor Martin Sheen, is preparing a $100-million lawsuit against his longtime producer, Guthy-Renker, according to Robbins attorney Marty Singer.

The suit comes in the wake of a court filing last month by Guthy-Renker--which is one-third owned by billionaire Ronald O. Perelman--seeking arbitration proceedings. The company claims Robbins “took it hostage” by demanding more money and holding up production. It also claims that as Robbins’ success grew, “so did his penchant for overreaching, extortion and disregard of his obligations” to Guthy-Renker.

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Singer calls the Guthy-Renker accusations “damage control (that) read like a press release.”

He also alleges that Robbins was shortchanged by Guthy-Renker because production costs were overstated on Robbins’ products and the company failed to pass on savings when big blocks of TV time were bought. Singer adds that Guthy-Renker was able to attract a $25-million investment from Perelman because of Robbins’ success.


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