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Thrifty’s bouncing high after hitting bottom

BY JENNIFER PALMER Published: November 15, 2009
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/> Just one year into a projected three-year turnaround, Thompson said he is pleased with how far the company has come.

Thompson started at Dollar Thrifty as chief financial offer and assumed his role as CEO Oct. 13 last year. The native Texan, looking for a way to connect with his workforce of 6,400, started sending a weekly e-mail to the company’s staff.

"I starting writing the e-mails (and) people liked them ... and it’s gotten to be fun. Some are very serious, some are lighthearted. It’s become a very effective way to communicate with the employees,” Thompson said.

Jake Dollarhide, chief executive of Longbow Asset Management in Tulsa, said Dollar Thrifty will likely see continued successes as the economy rebounds and consumers start traveling again.

"It’s become the darling of the stock market,” he said.

Investors who took a chance on Dollar Thrifty during the bleakest times could be seeing a 4,500 percent return, he said, a number that is "astronomical.”

Thompson likes to relate the company’s comeback tale to a quote by General George Patton: "Success is how high you bounce when you hit bottom.”