James Hawkins is not your typical pool guy. A seasoned entrepreneur and manager, Hawkins has founded and operated multiple companies. In 1998, he established Adapt, an Internet marketing company that grew to more than 150 Websites with millions of underlying pages of content, making it one of the largest affiliates of Amazon.com and other online retailers.
In 2000, he founded a company that built up a multi-unit group of franchised Aaron’s Sales & Lease Ownership stores in Massachusetts and Maine. He has since sold these to the franchisor.
But it wasn’t until 2006 that Hawkins extended his reach into the service industry by acquiring Pool Service America .
“What I thought was interesting about this business is the recurring revenue stream that represents the bulk of the revenue,” he says. “To me, it represented a business opportunity to grow out a substantial company.”
Although Pool Service America remains his primary focus, Hawkins has several other active ventures. He is a co-founder of Rudd Hawk, LLC , a company that manages intellectual property, including patent and copyright filings in the pool and spa industry.
Hawkins also continues to manage money for a select number of high net-worth individuals. This role is an extension of his former position as Senior Vice President Wealth Management and Senior Portfolio Manager with what was previously Citigroup’s Smith Barney.