b'A LEAGUE OF THEIR OWNThe years since Dixon & Haddon was sold by its founding partners had been tough on the company. More than one change of ownership and an ensuing period of neglect had gradually run the business down. The company was first sold to an Auckland businessman who onsold it after only a year to another businessman called Amir Rad. Amir had a reputation as a wheeler and dealer and, after owning the company for just a year, he was on the lookout for a potential buyer. He approached Mike to see if he was interested in taking over the company. I had the opportunity to pick up the business. However, I had to take on all the assets and the liabilitiesbut the liabilities exceeded the assets, recalls Mike. Financially, Dixon & Haddon was indire straits. They hadnt done any accounts for three years. So, it was a real big punt.While it didnt put Mike off, he did set himself one condition: that he lock Bob Haddon into the equation. Mike proposed a fifty-fifty venture. Bob was keen. Together, they set about trying to solve the massive cash flow problems. Left: The Clearwater Construction team down tools during construction of the Henderson swimming pool complex for a photo opportunity on the diving platforms. (Mike Sullivan visible on the far left, standing on the lower dive platform.) Right: From left, Blue Kamariera, Mike Sullivan, Mayor Assid Corban and Babbage engineer Murray Harding pose for a photo in the local newspaper ahead of the official opening of the Henderson swimming pool complex (now known as West Wave). Mayor Corban was worried wed throw himin the poolhe couldnt swim! recalls Mike Sullivan. 46'