2018 Fast Growth 150: Hit The Accelerator


Teneo doesn't do networking switches.

The strategic service provider's forte instead is identifying new, disruptive technologies that can provide a business with a competitive advantage and then working with customers to get the most out of the technologies.

"We're an integrator of next-generation technologies," said Chief Technology Officer Marc Sollars in an interview with CRN, in which he says the company doesn't sell commodity products like networking switches.

"Our mission as a company is to open minds to new possibilities," he said.

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Teneo is apparently opening a lot of minds these days. With a two-year growth rate of more than 346 percent, the company is No. 4 on the 2018 Fast Growth 150, CRN's annual ranking of the fastest-growing solution providers, technology integrators, IT consultants and strategic service providers in North America.

The CRN Fast Growth 150 ranks solution providers, with gross annual sales of at least $1 million, by their two-year growth rate. The top 25 companies appear on the next page, and the full ranking is available online at www.crn.com/fastgrowth.

Overall, this year's Fast Growth 150 recorded an average two-year growth rate of 83 percent compared with the 102 percent average two-year growth rate for the 2017 Fast Growth 150. And the 150 companies on this year's list collectively generated revenue of $50.59 billion compared with $16.69 billion last year. These statistics indicate that there are more large companies on this year's list than in years past.

Of the 150 companies on this year's list, 43 have never been on the list before.

For Teneo, growth has come thanks to its focus on leading-edge IT—particularly in networking, security, data storage and applications. Sollars, as CTO, helps identify IT that's early in its adoption curve and "evangelizes" it, working with customers to determine the technology that can provide customers with a competitive edge.

One good example is software-defined WAN, which has become one of Teneo's key technology practices.

"SD-WAN is really disrupting the market right now," Sollars said. "We've been an early mover in this space."

Teneo then offers comprehensive system design and implementation and managed and professional services around those technologies.

"We don't just sell products. We have a services-first mentality," the CTO said of the company, which has offices in Dulles, Va., Reading, U.K., and other locations.

Meanwhile, New Signature, a rapidly growing strategic service provider based in Washington, D.C., is making a name for itself in providing cloud solutions and services focused on Microsoft's Azure cloud platform, Dynamics 365, Office 365 and other Microsoft products. The company, No. 29 on the Fast Growth 150, is a leading partner in Microsoft's Cloud Solution Provider (CSP) program.

As cloud computing gained traction, New Signature focused on helping customers migrate their applications and data to the cloud. And that remains part of the company's services.

"There's still an awful lot of migrating yet to happen," said CEO Jeff Tench in an interview with CRN.

But a major factor behind New Signature's growth is its expansion beyond cloud migration to offering customers a comprehensive line of consulting and advisory services—for both IT and business practices and processes—that precede any migration.

And once customers understand what they need, New Signature can develop solutions on the Microsoft cloud platform and operate the IT for customers through a range of managed services, what Tench calls "plan, build and operate."

"We help clients figure out how to change their businesses in a digital economy," Tench said. "We're not just selling software. We're taking a more holistic approach."

New Signature's size also provides an advantage: It's bigger than traditional VARs, but smaller -- and more nimble -- than global systems integrators.

"We have the ability to 'out-big' the smaller players and 'outsmall' the bigger players," Tench said.