Industry & Services >> CEO Interviews >> November 28, 2000

Bruce Karatz – Kaufman & Broad Home Corporation (kbh)

BRUCE KARATZ is Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of KB Home. He has led KB Home during a period of immense growth, delivering 25,565 homes in fiscal 2002 compared to less than 4,000 homes delivered annually before he became CEO in 1986. KB Home is one of the largest homebuilders in the US and France with 2002 revenues exceeding $5 billion. Under Mr. Karatz's leadership, KB Home's mission has been to create highly personalized homes for families at prices they can afford, with an emphasis on first- time and first move-up homebuyers. During his tenure with the company, over 350,000 families have achieved the American Dream in a KB Home. In 1996, Mr. Karatz radically changed KB Home's building process by developing a new business model that provides high earnings visibility as well as the ability to sustain growth regardless of the economic cycle. Known as KBnxt, this new model involved pre-selling homes to customers, instead of the traditional model of building first and selling later. By reversing the process, KB Home has returned the power of choice to homebuyers, providing more than 5,000 custom options at its KB Home Studios that buyers select before the company ever breaks ground on a new home. In 2000, he led KB Home in an initiative to revitalize urban areas through the creation of American CityVista, a partnership with former HUD Secretary Henry Cisneros to develop residential communities in the nation's major metropolitan areas. That year Mr. Karatz was also named Builder of the Year by the Southern California Builders Association. Mr. Karatz joined KB Home as an in-house Attorney in 1972 and quickly ascended into an operations role. He served as President of the company's French operations from 1976 to 1980, establishing KB Home's leading market position in that country and becoming the first American to be appointed Director of France's National Federation of Builders and Developers. In 1986 he was made President and Chief Executive Officer of KB Home. Mr. Karatz was inducted into the California Building Industry Hall of Fame in 1992, and added the title of Chairman of the Board of the company the following year. A graduate of The Blake School in Minneapolis and Boston University, Mr. Karatz earned his Law degree from the University of Southern California. Profile
TWST: Would you give our readers a brief overview of Kaufman and Broad

Home Corp.?

Mr. Karatz: Over the past 12 months, Kaufman and Broad Home Corporation

has been the largest home builder in