To ensure delivery, please add to your address book
If you don’t see images, click here to view
Got a Story Idea? Events
Tech Bisnow
 Nav Bar
November 26, 2007
Results Software

The Hassle-Free

Entrepreneur Tom McMillen just raised $80 million, and it’s burning a hole through his pocket.  His latest “blank check” venture, Secure America Acquisition Corp., is flush from its October IPO on the AMEX, and it’s on a mission to acquire a company with homeland security applications.  We suggest you get your business plans over to him ASAP, because Tom says they’re piling up already.

If you don’t know Tom as the former Democratic Congressman from Maryland’s 4th District (1987-93), you probably know him as a star hoopster.  (Also, you should probably brush up on your civics, but we’re not here to judge.)  Lefty Driesell’s first major recruit at Maryland, Tom went on to a 10-year NBA career with stops in Atlanta and Washington.  He also played on the 1972 Olympic team that refused their silver medals after a highly controversial gold-medal game against the Russians.  Here he’s taking a nostalgic look at “Out of Bounds,” his book on the business side of sports.

Blank check companies—known more bureaucratically as special purpose acquisition companies, or SPACs—are public companies created for the express purpose of buying other operating businesses.  Tom first ventured into the world of SPACs as Vice Chairman of Fortress America Acquisition Corp., which organized in 2004 and acquired two companies that run data centers, Total Site Solutions and Vortech LLC, in January of this year.  Fortress is now up 41% from its 2005 IPO, which raised $48 million

Tom is also CEO of Homeland Security Capital Corp., which consolidates emerging businesses that offer homeland security products and services.  One of the two companies that HSCC has purchased is Polimatrix, the makers of this watch-looking gizmo, which is really a portable radiation detector for first responders.  Tom assured us that levels in his office were safe.     

Tom says SPACs are coming into ever greater vogue.  He cites Mark Ein and Jonathan Ledecky as two local moguls who are testing the waters with their own.  For businesses being purchased by a SPAC (which get absorbed into the public entity), Tom says they offer the equivalent of an IPO “without the hassle.”

According to the terms under which it was organized, Secure America has two years to find and acquire a business to purchase in the homeland security sector.  The acquisition must be approved by 70% of Secure America’s shareholders, most of whom are hedge funds, before it can go forward.  Tom expects to go on a two- to three-week road show promoting the purchase to shareholders after identifying Secure America’s target company.    

As Thanksgiving approached when we snapped this, Tom talked turkey with Polimatrix CEO Martin Erim.

After Tom’s Congressional run came to an end due to re-districting, he served as co-chair of the President’s Council on Physical Fitness with track and field icon FloJo.  (Arnold Schwarzenegger was a tough act to follow in the role, Tom says.)  He still gets in regular workouts, often at the gym available to members of Congress.  Last week he appeared in a Thanksgiving Day charity basketball game hosted by Gov. Warner.  But enough of this fluff.  Send your biz plan to:  How’s that for our interactive publication bringing people together?

The Center for Systems Management
Cardinal Bank
George Washington University
Advertise with Bisnow

This newsletter is a journalistic news source which accepts no payment for featured interviews. It is supported by conventional advertisers clearly identified in the right hand column. You have been selected to receive it either through prior contact or professional association. If you have received it in error, please accept our apologies and unsubscribe below. © 2007, Bisnow on Business, Inc., 2300 N Street, NW, Washington, DC 20037. All rights reserved.
DC Real Estate Legal Bisnow Women Bisnow Association Bisnow NYC Real Estate