In response to the need of sharing one of the America’s biggest corporate bankruptcy, a documentary directed by Alex Gibney was made and released on 2005. It was entitled “Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room which mainly explained the birth and death of Enron Corporation, a company providing energy to America. I had watched the film through YouTube, and it had started with a brief outlook of the happenings in the company, showing the state of Enron at its own expense and of the people involved in such scandal. It had also focused on how Jeff Skilling, the former Chief Executive Officer of Enron, had been scrutinized under the jurisdiction of the law for all of the actions that he had committed. Together with Ken Lay, the chairman of Enron, both of them had been denying any fraudulent activities that they’ve been involved with.
Not so long after, there had been a massive throwback of events, from the beginnings of Ken Lay, showing his state back when he was still a child, as well as his dream of becoming a successful businessman. He was responsible for the deregulation of the energy market, also involving the natural gas industry. With such, the advent of Enron took place in 1985. With its modest beginnings, it had dealt with people with utmost integrity, considering their actions showing nothing but a sign of truthfulness in reflection of their operations.
However, in the year 1987, an issue involving Enron took place, which was noted as the Valhalla Scandal. Two traders were using the wealth of Enron as a means of gambling money which in some manner benefited the company. However, as another trader had become skeptical of the stable profits of Enron, they had known that something is going wrong. Even though Ken Lay knowing the situation, he even appraised the act of the trader saying that he should continue making profits for the business. Louis Borget, together with Tom Mastroeni, was convicted of their actions, and of transferring some of the shareholders’ money to their private accounts.
With the quick downfall of Enron, Ken Lay had immediately found an answer to bring back the prosperous operations of the business. He hired Jeff Skilling who found a novel method of transporting energy and who introduced the idea of mark-to-market accounting. With the implementation of such, a lot of investors began to secure their shares with the company which led to an increase in the stock prices. Skilling had also noted the process of “rank and yank which became a way of advancing the operations through maintaining those who portray a profound performance of their works.
Not so later on, Enron hired a guy named Lou Pai who became the Chief Executive Officer of Enron Energy Services (EES). Lou Pai was considered an incredible asset of Enron, often beating competitors in a matter of second. However, Lou Pai was known to be using the funds of Enron as a means of satisfying his yearning for strippers even though he had a wife. Before leaving the company, Lou Pai sold off his shares and took away $250 million worth of stock as he left the firm.
After some months, Skilling had decided to let Enron enter the cyberspace, in which a bandwidth trading market is to be established. They had teamed up with Blockbuster in delivering movies, however, the thoughts of having an increase in the stock prices took an opposite way because of the incapacities of technology.
Many other issues were faced by the company, mostly destructing the image of Enron and divulging the misconducts that they’ve been into even in the bygone. The business was able to overcome such challenges but the increase in debt has kept them under trouble. Andy Fastow, the Chief Financing Officer of the company, was able to think of a method on how to keep hold of the mounting amounts of their debts. He had imposed the establishment of shell companies, those of which exist in a sense of paper only, in order to cover up the liabilities of the firm and give off money for the further growth of the business. However, in the latter part, all discrepancies were divulged and Fastow was convicted of his crimes.
Another main issue that greatly influenced the condition of Enron was the California energy crisis. The company had made the state of California look like as if it was needing a source of energy through bringing down power plants, but the reality was that the state wouldn’t really face a crisis because they had enough energy source. In order to increase Enron’s profits, they have considered fooling the people so as to bring back the declining revenues into its normal phase.
After all of Enron’s duplicitous doings, the people who should be blamed received their rightful repayments. The business had fell off the cliff and led to the state of bankruptcy. Many investors had lost their shares, and about 20,000 employees lost their jobs, as well as their retirement and pension funds as part of their investment to the company. Ken Lay, Jeff Skilling, Andy Fastow and many more had taken their consequences and faced lawsuits against their fraudulent activities while running the Enron Corporation.