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For personal computer maker Gateway, fixing a working capital problem wasn’t just a headache–it was critical to its turnaround. The company had gone through rough times between 2000 and 2004, but the acquisition of eMachines in 2004 put Gateway computers into big-box retailers like Best Buy and Wal-Mart. By 2006, with roughly 6% of the U.S. PC market, things were looking up.

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