Texas tycoon Dirk Calhoun (left) today announced that he’s plunking down $50,000 in VC money to resurrect defunct Austin-based startup Initrode. Jackson’s goal for the company, which was one of the thousands of victims during the bust, is to elevate it to the top of the telecom echelon once again and rival the likes of AT&T.
“I just feel that Initrode deserves another shot,” he tells ADOTAS. “Their network services and online data analysis could wreak havoc in the broadband age, and with my newfound fortune, I’m sure I can turn that dream into reality.” Jackson, who himself just elevated to tycoon status recently after being the sole winner of the $286 million regional Powerball jackpot, believes $50,000 is the ideal amount to get things started. “I might not know a lot about the Internet world,” he says, “but where I come from, $50,000 isn’t chump change.”
Frugality aside, Jackson will likely be flying solo on this endeavor, as original founders Peter Stengle and John Lumberg are reported to have “absolutely no interest” in revisiting the Initrode past.
During its heyday, Initrode experienced gold-rush fever, averaging an annual revenue stream of $182 million from 1999-2001. Its product line, which was aimed at mid-size businesses and large-scale enterprises, included the All-Together Business Network and Initrode Interactive Solution.
Jackson, whose previous entrepreneurial efforts included a Jack-in-the-Box eatery and a ten-gallon hat line, believes his future is set in the online/telecom field. “I think I’ve finally found my niche,” he says. “Computers are the wave of the future, and I’m ensuring that my healthy investment into the field will solidify its continuing success.”