A man ahead of his time – Regan administration Surgeon General Dr. C. Everett Koop, started DrKoop.com in 1997.
With over 1 million visitors a month Dr.Koop paved the way for more successful sites - like Web.MD.
DrKoop.com was a poster child for the roller-coaster ride of the dot-com era. Unveiled with a splash as Empower Health, the company sank into a cash crisis barely a year later, only to find an angel investor who provided enough backing for the company to go public in 1999 as DrKoop.com.
While there were a lot of bumps in the road – trouble really started when Dr. Koop himself, began to suffer when he faced questions about his ethics in a front-page story in The New York Times about how Koop was earning commissions for products sold on the site.
By 2000, DrKoop.com's auditors had serious doubts about the company's ability to survive as it piled up debt. Directors dumped shares, mass layoffs began and the stock sank to less than $1. For more info, see the Wikipediaentry.