High-tech education in Central America will get an $11 million boost, thanks to the chairman and former CEO of Chili!Soft.
Charles Crystle, sold his company to Cobalt Networks, will receive $15 million for the deal.
The high-tech entrepreneur plans to use the funds to help nonprofit groups in the region build training programs and set up high-tech businesses.
“We’re interested in catalyzing positive change,” he says. “The dollar goes a lot farther in Nicaragua than in the United States.”
Crystle stepped down as Chili!Soft’s chief executive in November, believing his talents were better suited to start-ups than to the large company that Chili!Soft had become.
He took a two-month vacation in Latin America and returned with philanthropy on his mind.
Crystle will not leave the business world completely. He plans to set up a business incubator in New York for start-ups that can make money from MP-3 digital music files. Meanwhile, he hopes others will join him in philanthropy.
“My advice to people who are making a ton of money is to pass on the yacht, rent a boat and put money into social ventures,” he says.