Austin Formula One Announcement Puts the Focus on Entrepreneur Red McCombs Once Again

He has never cared about what kind of business he was in as long as there was the opportunity to make an honest profit.

Serial entrepreneur Red McCombs has struck again. Reporters descended on the AT&T Executive Education Center this morning to hear the announcement that McCombs is the main backer for a Formula One Grand Prix racing facility in Austin.

I’ll let the news media tell that story better than I could. Here is the story from The Statesman.

What fascinates me is the diversity of interests shown by this prolific billionaire entrepreneur, who never seems to have encountered an industry from which he couldn’t extract some positive gain. I once heard him remark that he has never cared about what kind of business he was in as long as there was the opportunity to make an honest profit.

As a consequence of that philosophy, he has owned everything from car dealerships and professional sports teams to one of his most recent investments, SmartyPig.

“I was always afraid of being bored, so I put myself in a position to take risk,” he once said. “I’ll do just about anything. I once thought I could make money in the mobile home business, but my wife told me that idea crossed the line for her.”

Last November he told a group of executives at the SEMA Sports Entertainment and Media Association conference that sports was the one industry he had invested in for reasons other than making a profit, but he had made more money in sports than anything else.

It is reported that in today’s news conference regarding the Formula One investment he was asked “What will be the economic impact for you?”

“Well, I hope it will be immense,” he replied.

‘Nuff said. If you want a closer look at this fascinating business builder, Jim Swift of KXAN Austin News captured one of the most captivating interviews with McCombs that I’ve seen, on the occasion of the tenth anniversary gala celebration of his $50 million gift to the McCombs School of Business at The University of Texas at Austin.

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