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2021 Fast Growth 150: Now That’s Quick Thinking

The 150 companies on this year’s Fast Growth 150 list collectively generated revenue of $94.78 billion, considerably above the $37.80 billion generated by last year’s Fast Growth 150 and $55.93 billion by the 2019 class.

With the global pandemic and resulting economic upheaval as well as the massive changes in how everyone works, the past 18 months have been very turbulent waters for the IT industry and the channel. The pandemic did create big opportunities for solution providers as someone, after all, had to deliver the technology, services and support for all those remote workers. But it also brought big challenges, and business growth was by no means assured. That’s all the more reason to recognize those solution providers that have not just survived but thrived.

CRN does just that with its Fast Growth 150 list, which ranks solution providers, with annual sales of at least $1 million, by their average two-year revenue growth rate. The 25 solution providers with the highest growth rates appear on the following page.

Clutch Solutions, a Gilbert, Ariz.-based solution provider, is No. 1 on this year’s list with an impressive 744 percent two-year growth rate. The company’s core solutions and professional services are focused on IT modernization and performance enhancement with expertise in cybersecurity, networking, analytics, collaboration and mobility—key expertise that helped the solution provider succeed.

[RELATED: 2021 Fast Growth 150 - The Top 25 Solution Providers]

Overall, this year’s Fast Growth 150 recorded an average two-year growth rate of 83 percent. That’s slower than the 101 percent growth rate for the Fast Growth 150 list in 2020 and the 147 percent growth rate for the 2019 class. The average two-year growth rate for the 2018 Fast Growth 150 was also 83 percent.

The 150 companies on this year’s list collectively generated revenue of $94.78 billion, considerably above the $37.80 billion generated by last year’s Fast Growth 150 and $55.93 billion by the 2019 class. The cumulative revenue­ figure can vary widely year to year depending on the mix of small and large companies on the list.

Some of the solution providers on the 2021 Fast Growth 150 are well-established, including Ntiva (No. 12), Denali Advanced Integration (No. 17), Slalom Consulting (No. 53), Sycomp (No. 65) and Carahsoft Technology (No. 72).

This year’s Fast Growth 150 also includes 36 companies that have never been on the list before. Among those newly making the list are Network to Code (No. 5), nClouds (No. 10) and the clearly forward-looking 22nd Century Technologies (No. 47).

Seattle-based 2nd Watch (No. 83 on this year’s list with nearly 48 percent two-year average growth) has appeared on the Fast Growth 150 for several years running thanks to its focus on public cloud services and, more recently, profession[1]al services.

“We’ve always been out there in terms of being a pure-play cloud, public cloud solution provider that’s really focused on delivering a world-class experience to our clients across a multi-cloud context, whether it’s AWS, Azure or Google, but also across a breadth and depth of services,” 2nd Watch CEO Doug Schneider said in a recent interview with CRN.

“What’s resonating for clients too with professional services is they’re looking for a provider that they can partner with because you invest a lot of time and energy in each other,” Schneider said, noting that the company’s professional services are currently growing in the mid to high 40 percent range.

Solution providers grow both organically and through acquisitions. The latter has certainly been the case for AHEAD, the Chicago-based solution provider that was No. 15 on last year’s list after several mergers and acquisitions in 2019.

This year the IT sales and services powerhouse is No. 3 on the Fast Growth 150 with a two-year average growth rate of 535 percent—certainly fueled by its late 2020 acquisitions of RoundTower and Kovarus. The acquisitions also boosted AHEAD to No. 28 on the CRN Solution Provider 500 this year from No. 36 in 2020.

San Diego-based services provider Evotek (No. 27 with 108 percent two-year growth) has both organic growth and an acquisition to thank for its showing on this year’s list. In November the solution provider acquired Mystic River Consulting in a move to extend its expertise and service offerings in intelligent automation, business process automation, arti­ficial intelligence and machine learning. ■

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