Oberhelman is a long-time Caterpillar executive who led the Illinois construction and mining equipment giant through a period of slack demand during the global financial crisis. Caterpillar has had a strong 2011 driven by rebounding emerging market economies, rising global commodity prices, and government infrastructure spending worldwide. Last April, Cat paid $8.8 billion to acquire mining equipment manufacturer Bucyrus, a good move given strong expected growth in the global mining industry. Big risks for Oberhelman: Another economic downturn, which would crimp infrastructure spending, and competition from Japanese construction equipment maker Komatsu, which is especially strong in China where Caterpillar lacks a robust dealer network.
He rescued the coffee chain. It had record financial results this year. Now the CEO is on a campaign to save the country from its politicians. Here's how he blends capitalism and activism.
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