Frederick Hutson built a $3M business in one year after serving a four year prison sentence

Visit for more information is an online inmate service site that was created by an ex-con by the name of Frederick Hutson. The initial business venture was essentially started after Hutson served a four year bid. He originally was busted at his Vegas mail store, where he’d been reducing inefficiencies by rerouting marijuana through his Florida business via FedEx, UPS, and DHL.

Pigeon is a platform that centralizes the myriad state-level databases making it a quick search to find where an inmate is in the system. Through its sub-brands, Fotopigeon, which sends digital prints to inmates and Telepigeon which lowers phone call rates through VoIP, Pigeonly has brought in revenue of about $1 million in its first year following $2 million in seed financing from Silicon Valley investors. Hutson’s Las Vegas-based team has grown from two to twelve. Key to this was getting accepted to NewMe, a Silicon Valley-based accelerator for underrepresented minorities. It was the only accelerator to accept Hutson.


By winter 2013 Hutson and his cofounder Alfonzo Brooks had already launched a version of Pigeonly while he was still in a halfway house. They’d quickly picked up 2,000 customers by directly mailing inmates touting their services.

A lot of times a thing that can be perceived as a weakness actually turn into the greatest strength and for me it was that. It actually became the reason people invested…because I’d been there, and I know and understand this market better than anybody else.”
-Fredrick Hutson

-Infinite Wiz(@InfiniteWiz)