Let me tell ya'll a little bit more about myself since I'm part of the team you'll be investing in. My business career started in 1997 when I was 17. I had been learning about the Web since junior high when I played with the Mosaic browser. As I graduated from high school, I was enamored with the possibilities of PHP, MySQL and the Apache server. I started investing time and money into developing back end products for web sites. I hired my friends, bought a domain name and even incorporated in Delaware. I was very much absorbed with the idea of "built it and they will come." I struggled to run this company for 2 years. It was a complete and utter failure. I ended up sinking about $5000 and numerous man hours into my company. I also trashed my credit. A teenager really doesn't have much to fund a company out of pocket so I tried credit cards...mistake. It was during this time that I experienced all the numerous things that a start up goes through on it's way to success. I failed at all of them, but I learned two things. What to expect and by inverse what success is. I learned about cash flow, marketing and numerous other business principles.
From 19 to 21 I contemplated my failed business. I began reading everything I could find on business in newspapers, magazines and of course online. I became convinced, incorrectly, that my biggest failure was that I didn't have a perfect business plan. So I spent months on and off crafting various business plans. I even tried to send them to people of influence, but got no response. It was also this time that I tried my hand with companies like Vector Marketing selling Cutco knives. In all my reading, my favorite subject has always been business cases. Everything from Fortune 500 companies to dot.com flame outs.
At 21, I spent two years in Taiwan serving as a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. It really transformed me. It also ended up being a great business education. My mission president was President Phipps. Before serving as mission president he had run several successful businesses in Australia. His last position was Director of Public Lands for the Australian government. His instruction was always of a spiritual nature, but his demeanor was that of a successful business man. I studied him incessantly. I absorbed his ideas about work, people and management. From a business perspective, my service as a missionary was a two year internship at a global company. I managed fellow missionaries as well as native Taiwanese members. I worked through direct marketing, referrals and media. I learned how to transform my American views and habits to fit the Taiwanese culture. I became fluent in the Chinese language and customs. As I walked through the streets of Taiwanese cities I became familiar their numerous factories that produced goods that I knew in America.
When I got back I joined the Army Reserve. I wanted to use my linguistic (tri-lingual) ability in the intelligence field. I ended up in the Chemical Corps learning about Nuclear Biological and Chemical weapons of mass destruction. As many businesses know, you can learn a lot about management in the military.
In the years up to now I've done a lot of temporary work. I've worked for companies such as Halliburton, GE and Shell. I've also worked with a lot of small business like Biotics Research and Monarch Paint. My fascination with business cases led to me studying their business practices as I walked about their offices doing data entry work. I often talked with regional and national managers about their businesses.