Angel investment group founder praises Atmore roots, 'crash-and-burn' lessons
December 24, 2012 at 2:48 PM
By Kelli Dugan | email@example.com
MOBILE, Alabama - Of his 59 years, Jim Corman spent the first 53 in Atmore, happily starting telecommunications companies, selling them and starting over.
When he and his wife Jane found themselves empty-nesters six years ago, however, the serial entrepreneur and independent angel investor could think of no valid reason not to take a part-time teaching position in entrepreneurship at Auburn University.
A series of fortunate events and meetings have since inspired Corman to help give the Alabama business community that which it's long-lacked and desperately needs: an statewide investor network respected across the Southeast for its depth and breadth of both intellectual and financial capital.
Of course, Corman is the first to remind budding entrepreneurs that success rarely happens overnight and often eludes even the most organized and well-intentioned startups.
"I started my first company as a senior at Auburn (University), but it crashed and burned," he said, noting the enterprising spirit was too strong within him, and he went on to launch six more companies over the next three decades.
Two of those ventures didn't survive, but four were successful.
"The largest of those companies grew from a startup with me and three ladies in a rented house in Atmore to 2,000 employees and 2.2 million customers nationwide," he said.