Alim Thompson returns as Interim CEO
January 1, 2003

Lithia Springs, GA.: January 1, 2003: New Leaf Distributing Company announced that Alim Thompson, founder and former President and CEO has returned to New Leaf as CEO. The Atlanta based wholesaler specializing in the fields of metaphysics, alternative health and conscious living has struggled with the rest of the industry over the last several years, and there have been rumors (untrue) that it might not survive. While Thompson admits that there have been problems, he proclaims this is still a great company with great people. He stated, "New Leaf is still far and away the leading wholesaler in our niche market and that market has a very strong future. I am excited to be back and very enthusiastic about the prospects for the company."

Regarding the company’s present state he is confident that the worst of the problems are past. He said, "When I came in the long-time CEO Rich Bellezza had recently died, the bankers were questioning how things would proceed and the company was operating at a loss. We have made enormous positive strides in just a few months, and although sales for the 4th quarter were disappointing, we showed a slight profit and our bankers are pleased. We are going into the new year on a definite up note."

Thompson hinted that he has many plans for the company's future, but said "First, it's back to the basics by ensuring that we consistently deliver the high level of service that fueled New Leafs dramatic growth in the '80's and early 90's. I know that some customers may have been disappointed with our recent service levels, and I am serving notice that we are going to earn back their business. A key to our new orientation is our new online ordering website with complete catalog search and wholesale 24/7 ordering capabilities at"

Thompson is one of the success stories of our industry beginning in 1975 by selling books out of the trunk of his car and leaving a $25M business when he retired in 1994. Judith Hawkins-Tillirson, senior buyer stated: "Alim coming back is like a dream come true. When he left, we lost a lot of our spirit. I was seriously considering leaving, but now they'll have to carry me out."

For more information, contact NEW LEAF DISTRIBUTING, Attn: Alim Thompson, 401 Thornton Road, Lithia Springs, GA 30122. 770.948.7845 (office phone). E-mail: website:

Copyright 2004 New Leaf Distributing Company