Crestview man's start-up business now worth millions

Pat Palmer

Pat Palmer, president and founder of Spy Chest Inc., says the company is launching Drive Proof, a new line of vehicle surveillance equipment.

MATTHEW BROWN / News Bulletin
Published: Wednesday, November 20, 2013 at 06:24 PM.

CRESTVIEW — Pat Palmer believes anyone with passion can follow his or her dreams toward a successful career.

He should know; Spy Chest, the company he built on a shoestring budget and chance 13 years ago, reportedly is worth $8 million.

Palmer started the business — which sells surveillance equipment to government agencies and consumer markets in the U.S. and overseas —  with next to nothing.  

"Around (the year) 2000, I was gifted $100 for my birthday," he said. It was the only money he had at the time, but he fed it to a casino slot machine in Biloxi, Miss.

"I hit a jackpot for just a smidge over $3,600," Palmer said. "This was like a pot of gold to me."

He invested $3,000 to develop the business, which included ordering materials and creating a website,

Two years later, he profited from selling devices that monitor children and senior citizens while loved ones are away.

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