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Tuesday, May 17, 2022

Consistently Large Gains in Revenues Difficult to Uphold

Consistently Large Gains in Revenues Difficult to Uphold


Staff Reporter

Running a business is more like a marathon than a sprint, so it’s not surprising that the makeup of fastest-growing private companies tends to be a fluid affair.

In keeping with recent years, fewer than half the companies qualifying for the list this year were present in 2002. All but 45 are new editions in 2003, compared to 40 repeaters the year earlier and 49 in both 2001 and 2000.

The Business Journal’s list of fastest-growing private companies is a measure of revenue gains from 2000 to 2002, as a percentage. To be considered, companies must be privately held, for-profit ventures headquartered in Los Angeles County (including Westlake Village and Thousand Oaks) that have been in business since at least Jan. 1, 2000. Companies are also required to have at least $5 million in 2002 revenues.

The list does not include advertising agencies, law firms or banks because they do not report revenues in a conventional manner.

The data for the list is compiled primarily from the included companies, supplemented by third-party sources. Every effort has been made to make the list as comprehensive as possible, although it is by no means complete, given the right of privately held companies to withhold information.

Of those that did offer their revenue figures, only one, Ace Fence Co., was able to break into the Top 10 after appearing on the list in 2002. The fence contractor moved to No. 10 from No. 59, registering more than 200 percent growth in revenues on the strength of a $3.5 million contract for the Metro Gold Line extension.

Also showing a strong gain was M-Audio, a maker of digital audio recording hardware that moved up 30 spots, to No. 15.

Tim Ryan, M-Audio’s chief executive, chalked up the growth to tapping into a fast-growing home recording market, as well as expansion into related products. “There was a paradigm shift in the way people record music,” said Ryan. “We have replaced the tape deck that people would have bought.”

Among the 10 businesses that topped the list last year, seven returned, although the pace of growth for all fell substantially.

Five fell to the bottom half of the list, including MJW Investments and Prosum at Nos. 97 and 100, respectively.

C & H Electric reported lower revenues in 2002 than the year earlier and Molina Healthcare Inc. fell off by virtue of its successful public offering in July. (Last year’s No. 1 company, Key Information Systems, failed to supply information.)

Proving how daunting it can be to register revenue gains in excess of 100 percent, only four returning companies were able repeat their triple digit performances. They were Innovative Solutions Insurance Services LLC, financial services company CDSNet Inc., Micro Solutions Enterprises and United Pacific Mortgage.

Riding the wave of refinancing, United Pacific Mortgage dropped back only two places, to No. 13. Chief Executive Randy Levine cited market forces and organization for its growth.

“We have nine to 10 underwriters in house,” he said. “When the industry was bogged down with too much volume, given that we had everything in-house, our turnaround times were much better.”

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