Brooks O'Kane says he's learned a lot from doing business with Wal-Mart, his biggest customer. In particular, he's learned about the virtues of being -- how shall I put it? -- thrifty. Wal-Mart may be the nation's largest retailer and O'Kane the nation's smallest glass-cleaner manufacturer (he's about to hire his first employee), but that cuts no ice in Bentonville, Ark. "Whenever they Fedex something to me, they bill it to my [Federal Express] account," says O'Kane, "and whenever they call me, they call collect."

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