First African American Reginald Lewis Builds a Billion Dollar Company
Reginald F. Lewis believed in the mantra, “Keep going no matter what.” And so he did just that by becoming the first black billionaire businessman in the 1980s.
After graduating from the Harvard School of Law and working for a top New York Law Firm, he started his own corporate law firm and then moved on to create the TLC Group L.P. in 1983.
Smith’s first major purchase was to acquire the McCall Pattern Company, which was founded in 1870. He turned this company around by making the company its most profitable in its history.
Reginald Lewis went on to buy Beatrice International Foods from Beatrice Companies in 1987, renaming it TLC Beatrice International. TLC Beatrice became the first black owned company to hit the $1 billion mark in revenue. Lewis also wrote an inspiring and enduring autobiography, “Why Should White Guys Have All the Fun?”
Lewis died to brain cancer at the age of 50.