Lawrence entrepreneur David Kimbrell is at it again.
Kimbrell, who was reached today in Mississippi, confirmed reports that he plans to start a new company, called Scanning America Inc., that will convert records, drawings and blueprints into data readable by computers.
Kimbrell is the co-founder of the highly successful Hall-Kimbrell Environmental Services Inc., 15th and Wakarusa, which was sold in January to Professional Services Inc., a Chicago-based firm.
The local businessman was between meetings this morning and had little time to discuss his new venture.
However, Kimbrell said he has been interested for some time in the computer conversion industry, which he said began emerging in 1987.
KIMBRELL said he plans to market his service on a national level and hopes to hire as many as 90 employees at the outset.
He said he is currently advertising for the positions in Lawrence and Kansas City. However, Kimbrell said he has not yet decided in which of the two cities to locate his main office.
"We're considering Kansas City and Lawrence as far as the production headquarters," he said.
Kimbrell said it is difficult to tell how high sales might be in the company's first year. However, he thought the company's sales might be in the $5 million to $10 million range.
Kimbrell said that although he expected rapid growth of the service throughout the country, he didn't want the new venture to grow as quickly as Hall-Kimbrell, which had expanded at a rate of 300 percent a year.
KIMBRELL said the growth of the new company will be controlled in phases, unlike the rapid expansion at Hall-Kimbrell.
Kimbrell co-founded Hall-Kimbrell in 1983, and the company grew rapidly to be among Lawrence's largest employers. Hall-Kimbrell had 700 employees and estimated its 1989 sales at nearly $44.5 million.
In 1989 Hall-Kimbrell was ranked in the top 10 of Inc. magazine's 500 Fastest Growing Private Companies in 1989.
Since Kimbrell sold the company to PSI in January, PSI has laid off a number of employees, although PSI officials have not revealed the exact number of jobs that were eliminated. PSI and Kimbrell currently are involved in counter-lawsuits concerning the merger.