If I Fail, I'm on the Hook: Ross Johnson

In the first interview since his buyout bid, Ross Johnson defends his sweet deal

Since putting his company in play six weeks ago, RJR Nabisco president Ross Johnson has refused all public comment. Last Friday he changed his mind and met with TIME senior correspondent Frederick Ungeheuer in Jupiter, Fla.

Q. How much of a reward do you expect for yourself?

A. This is the question on which I'm just getting murdered.

Q. That's why I'm asking it.

A. My job is to negotiate the best deal that I can for my people. So I negotiated a deal where we'd get 8.5% and then have incentives that went to 12% and then to 18.5% if...

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