CEO of the Fairchild Corporation, Jeffrey Steiner,
graduated with a degree in Textile Engineering
from Bradford Institute of Technology in 1957.
Jeffrey reached the top of a multi million dollar
global empire by astutely predicting the next ‘big thing’ and moving to make sure he was in
the right place at the right time to capitalise on
the advent of computers, the oil boom and the
aggressive Wall Street takeovers of the 1980s.
He was born in Austria to a Jewish father but he grew up in Istanbul, where his mother came from, after the family escaped the Nazis. He came to Bradford to study Textile Engineering with the intention of working in the family textile firm back in Turkey, but after completing his degree in 1957 he moved to America, working as a trainee salesman for Texas Instruments. However his obvious talent for business led to rapid promotions and at 25 he held an executive position in the group and was President of subsidiaries in Mexico, Switzerland and France.
In 1967 he moved to Paris, initially setting up a small textile business which he sold, and then running a number of engineering companies whose trade with the Middle East led to him trading in oil very lucratively.
However in the 1980s, when falling oil prices restricted the profits of his construction interests in the Middle East, he moved to New York. He became a leading exponent of arbitrage and funded the activities of corporate raider, Carl Icahn.
Jeffrey became Chairman and CEO of Banner and over the years, using his entrepreneurial skills and investment banking acumen, he acquired, restructured and disposed of subsidiaries on a massive scale. In 1989 he rescued Fairchild Industries from a hostile takeover and by 1990 the merged company became the Fairchild Corporation. The group includes businesses engaged in the design and sale of protective clothing, helmets and technical accessories for motorcyclists in Europe and the United States; and in aerospace distribution businesses which stock and distribute a wide variety of parts to aircraft operators and aerospace customers providing aircraft parts and services to customers worldwide. Jeffrey served as company President from July 1991 until September 1998 and was Chairman of the Board until May 2008, when he stepped down though he remains as Chief Executive Officer of the company.
Photograph supplied by Fairchild Corporation