By Steve Jagler Special to Published Oct 06, 2006 at 8:44 AM
RedPrairie Corp. company leader John Jazwiec is threatening to leave Wisconsin, and he's burning the bridges behind him.

On one hand, Jazwiec says the state should cut its corporate tax rate by 50 percent and abandon its "socialist mentality." On the other hand, he says the state should invest more in money in the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, and he says local government entities should stop giving financial incentives to keep companies here.

On one hand, Jazwiec, who has supported conservative political candidates in the past, says his company cannot recruit and retain the young creative class of employees he needs, so he is threatening to move to places such as Austin, Texas; Boston, Mass.; and California's Silicon Valley. Um, excuse me, John. Those are among the most liberal, progressive and highly taxed markets in the country. And you think you've got it bad in Wisconsin?

On one hand, Jazwiec suggests Wisconsin's flag could feature a "hammer and sickle," because it is such a terrible place to do business. On the other hand, he reported this week that RedPrairie gained record third-quarter bookings revenue of $14.7 million, up 49 percent from its previous quarterly record of $9.9 million and up 100 percent over the same period a year ago.

So, what's not to love, John?

Along the way, Jazwiec is taking verbal shots at the City of Milwaukee, the Milwaukee Brewers and Milwaukee's Historic Third Ward. "We need to focus less on baseball teams that play in empty baseball fields and fake creative places like the Third Ward, which is greased by local politicians and people want to leave in a year," Jazwiec said (see the link below for the full story).

This guy is not just burning bridges. He's shoveling dirt upon the ashes.

Before we all genuflect to Jazwiec and beg him to forgive us for our trespasses and stay here, let's remember one thing: Jazwiec sold RedPrairie to Franciscan Partners, a Menlo Park, Calif.-based private equity group, last year. He's no longer calling the shots, anyway.
Steve Jagler Special to

Steve Jagler is executive editor of BizTimes in Milwaukee and is past president of the Milwaukee Press Club. BizTimes provides news and operational insight for the owners and managers of privately held companies throughout southeastern Wisconsin.

Steve has won several journalism awards as a reporter, a columnist and an editor. He is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

When he is not pursuing the news, Steve enjoys spending time with his wife, Kristi, and their two sons, Justin and James. Steve can be reached at