WinePress Not Stolen Transcript
I’m here for one purpose and one purpose only this is what I have to say, Timothy Williams did not, did not steal WinePress.
There’s been this rumor going around for years saying that he stole WinePress, it’s not true, in fact it’s absurd.
Timothy’s integrity was unbelievable he had published some books through WinePress, quite a few I don’t, I don’t remember the exact number, seven or eight something like that and he took all those books, except for one he did keep Gossip and the Gospel in print, all the others he took out of print he wanted there to be no appearance at all that maybe his books would get priority or you know or he was going to take advantage of some specials or anything. Was like nope all of his books, out of print.
It was just amazing his integrity you know and of course you know that’s something I have just observed in his life. I mean I would have to say you know in all my years you know my 70 plus years you know, I’ve met a lot of men in my life and I have never met a man that is holy and righteous as Timothy and I have known him for 20 years and I’ve seen the crooks just work, the cross of Christ just works the purity in his life its just amazing but you might be wondering well hey you know what’s WInePress?
Who’s Timothy Williams and who am I? You know well I’m going to get into all that I’m going to tell you that and a lot more. First let’s start with WinePress, what was WinePress, and I am saying was because it’s no longer uh it’s no longer in existence but WinePress was an incredible company, it was a Christian self-publishing company.
I never worked in the publishing industry before and I was just I loved worked for the company, I love this company so much but what they did is you know there’s so many authors, people that they’ve written books very excellent books, well-written and inspiring good messages and everything but traditional publishers, they won’t take them because they want the big name sellers, they want to make sure hey if we sign this book uh author up we can sell a million copies, well they don’t know these smaller authors you know so this provided an opportunity for these authors to get their message out and have a quality product from 2003 until 2015 I was the accounting manager there so this story is from the perspective of accounting department because that’s the department that I know.
Now, when I first came to work for WinePress that was back in 2003. I started in the accounting department and the operation was kind of shady you know as I was exploring things, I found out that they had not one QuickBooks file, not two QuickBooks files but three I mean sometimes you know companies will have like a second set of books but they had three sets of books you know and of course then I found that payroll taxes hadn’t been paid, money been deducted from the employees paychecks but it was never sent into the IRS so that’s a red flag and there were other things too that were going on but just those two I mean should be red flag enough that if you wanted to work in a, in an upright company, a legal operation, you would run, run far from there you know?
So, you’re probably asking “well hey and why did you stay? If you saw these things that were going on with the company, I mean you know why didn’t you leave?” Well, I’ll tell you why I didn’t leave and there’s it’s one reason, Timothy Williams.
The owner of the company, I’m not going to identify her name, I’ll just call her Jessabelle for this interview but she had hired him, he was actually the pastor of the church that we attended. She had hired him to come over and look over the operations, you know and advise her and console her. He was going to turn this into a respectable business and Jessabelle at the time she wanted that to happen she wanted to change her ways, she wanted to run things according to the rules you know? Follow standard accounting principles and so I stayed at WinePress and so you might be wondering “okay who is this, Timothy Williams?”
You know well one thing, at the time, he was the pastor of the church that I attend and actually Jessabelle attended that church there that’s where I met her and we were actually roommates, we were roommates for about 8 years and he came in, she had him console her on running the business and it was incredible just so amazing to see how he transformed that business from a shady unorganized operations to well really they ended up being the number one bestselling number one self-publishing company in the industry and it was just like I said was amazing to see and Jessabelle loved it too you know because she was kind of the face of the company you know and she liked going to conferences and speaking and giving classes and meeting with authors and stuff like that but now she had an operation behind her that was reliable and she could, actually she could produce the quality product that she was promising authors.
So, for her oh this was so great for her and she didn’t really like the day-to-day durations especially didn’t like the accounting department you know? In fact we budded heads quite a bit you know on what is standard accounting practices you know she would come to me and wanted “I need clothes, I need new clothes” you know to go to the conference you know so “I need company money” it’s like no a new wardrobe is not a business expense you know, but anyway she wanted to change things around and so you know so she did agree to go by the rules well as time went on Timothy actually took on more and more of the responsibilities at WinePress. He was always called in if there was a difficult situation and about the year 2006,
Jessabelle asked if he would buy the company and it was kind of an interesting time for him because he had been the pastor of the church, I think I mentioned that before but he had retired the previous year, so he did have some free time, some extra time you know but was this what he wanted to do well it wasn’t what he wanted to do and he balked at the idea you know.
He’s a pastor, he’s not a businessman, this is not, you know this is not really his line of work at all you know but then at the same time you know he is asking “well I don’t want to do this but is this what God is working?” You know?
His wife Carla encouraged him to take this on you know because she really thought that what this company needs is a pastor’s heart not a businessman but a pastor’s heart so eventually he did agree that he would buy the company but he had one condition just one and what that was is, that Jessabelle wanted to do this 100% and she wasn’t going to look back.
That was his only condition that if that was met he would go ahead and move forward with it and so she agreed yes that is what I want. So we started changing over the operations. I set up accounts for him, new accounts for him with the IRS, state of Washington, got all that paperwork in order.
Jessabelle hired an outside CPA who’s specialized in evaluating businesses and coming up with the fair market value for a sale price and actually he flew in from I think it was California, he went from California and stayed at Jessabelle’s house while he was here, spent three days at WinePress publishing and you know just going over the books you know he would be telling me oh I need this report, this report. He was interviewing department heads in the company, touring the company, just observe how the operation went and you know and meeting some of the employees and everything.
Now Timothy wasn’t a part of the evaluation at all, I mean he was an outside consultant, so you know the CPA didn’t really ask about him you know or want to know any more about him you know he was just want is going on you know it mainly in the accounting department he wants it so anyway he left and mailed back his report. Everything was in order, we were all excited, all the employees, we knew what was happening. Jessabelle start announcing this in the media, there was an article in one of the magazines and she started speaking about it publicly so it was just you know gangbusters moving ahead you know.
Until one day when Timothy was at work, Jessabelle walked past his door and kind of mumbled under her breath “I don’t know if I really want to sell WinePress” you know. Well as soon as he heard that, red flags and he went into action you know, I get a call right away “okay put a hold on transferring on the sale of the company” you know, didn’t know why at this time or anything you know I just go okay well this project’s on hold for now I focus on something else but he just no this was not going to happen well a couple days later I did find out about it.
Jessabelle and I were called into a meeting with the executive director and he told her at that time “Timothy’s not going to buy the company” at first you know Jessabelle’s like she didn’t really believe it she goes, “well yeah he is, he’s got everything in place no this is going to happen”. You know she didn’t really believe what he was saying and so he said again “no he is not going to buy the company, it’s final” You know? He’s not going to change his mind, well when she realized that he meant it, she became hysterical and she just started sobbing and going: “He has to, he has to.”
You know, she just kept saying that over and over again you know. I mean she knew without him, this company did not have a promising future at all you know and she just like would not stop I mean and I finally spoke up I mean I had been sitting there really stunned with the whole thing that I was hearing you know and I go “Jessabelle he’s not going to buy it” you know and so at that point, the sale was off, it did not go through and Timothy made it clear at that point that he would never attempt to buy the company again that was just dead that if Jessabelle ever did want to sell the company again that maybe the church Sound Doctrine where we went to church, they could buy the company and you know that way it could just be really a part of everybody you know, part of the church that was really the end of it.
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