Jeff Bearden said there’s a big difference between “doing” technology and “developing” technology.
And he said the move from “doing” to “developing” has paid off for his business, B&D Consulting Inc. of Hagerstown, Md.
For the second straight year, B&D is among the area businesses named to Inc. Magazine’s list of the 5000 fastest-growing private companies in the United States.
Noting that nearly every endeavor is linked to technology now, Bearden thinks there’s room to grow many more tech jobs with companies in the area if the workforce is well-trained.
“You can get into almost every industry there is, because technology is going to be the driver of that industry,” said Bearden, the company’s president and chief executive officer.
“Eighty percent of the people here are in their 20s,” added Bearden, who celebrated his 43rd birthday at work on Sept. 8.
Recruiting top talent has been important, he said.
“You have to build an environment that energizes them,” he said.
The big change in his business happened several years ago.
“It was me, Jeff Bearden, just doing the technology,” he said. “Then I started developing technology. That was the difference. … That’s what makes us different.”
At the depth of the recession, he said, B&D was down to one client. Now the company, which was founded in 2004, has a long client list that includes the Department of Defense.
“Most of our contracts are top-secret and above,” Bearden said.
At the top of Inc.’s national list is Skillz, an e-sports company. Based in San Francisco, Skillz has developed a mobile platform that lets users host streaming video game tournaments and interact directly with fellow fans at live sporting events. According to the Inc. ranking, the company reported a three-year growth rate of 1,041 percent. It’s 2016 revenue hit $54.2 million.
Other Crossroads-area businesses on Inc.’s list range from retailers to engineers to consultants:
No. 423: B&D Consulting, Hagerstown, Md.
Business: Engineering, cybersecurity, cloud computing, mobility and unified communications services.
Leadership: Jeff Bearden, president and chief executive officer
Three-gear growth rate: 1,041 percent
2016 revenue: $11.5 million
B&D ranked No. 6 among Maryland businesses on the list
No. 1,175: STS International, Berkeley Springs, W.Va.
Business: Engineering, enterprise logistics and training services to the federal government
Leadership: David Morgan, co-founder and vice president of operations
Three-year growth rate: 353 percent
2016 revenue: $68.1 million
STS Technologies also made the list in 2014, 2015 and 2016.
No. 1,829: Tapestry Technologies, Chambersburg, Pa.
Business: Cyber security services for the Department of Defense, including network and systems engineering, training and IT support.
Leadership: Jacquie Sipes, chief executive officer
Three-year growth rate: 211 percent
2016 revenue: $20.1 million
Tapestry Technologies also made the list in 2014, 2015 and 2016.
No. 2,271: Mid-Atlantic Pro-Tel,Martinsburg, W.Va.
Business: Call-center support and retail sales of AT&T products
Leadership: Bryan Butler, chief executive officer
Three-year growth rate: 161 percent
2016 revenue: $36.5 million
The company made the Inc. list in 2014, 2015 and 2016.
No. 3,508: GRSi, Frederick, Md.
Business: IT infrastructure modernization and architecture design, software engineering, technology assessment and insertion, and multi-tier IT service management.
Leadership: David Affeldt, president and chief executive officer
Three-year growth rate: 89 percent
2016 revenue: $34.6 million
GRSi also made the Inc. list in 2011 and 2012.
No. 3,700: Soldierfit, Ijamsville, Md.
Business: Military-inspired fitness franchise
Leadership: David Posin, co-founder and chief financial and operating officer
Three-year growth rate: 81 percent
2016 revenue: $2.7 million
The company previously appeared on the Inc. list in 2016.