A total of 12 Washtenaw County companies in industries ranging from software to janitorial services made the 2018 Inc. 5000 list of the fastest-growing private companies in the U.S.
Human Element, an Ann Arbor software firm, made the list for the second time, coming in at No. 2,315. That's nearly 500 spots ahead of where it landed last year, with a three-year revenue growth rate of 189 percent.
Managing partner Jason Magee says the company's growth likely could have landed it on the list several other times in the past, but he hadn't thought to apply until last year. This year, he says he and his coworkers "felt pretty confident." He feels Human Element gets a boost in status from making the list.
"It's exciting and allows us to, when we speak to clients, show that we're a dynamic company in this tech space in Michigan," Magee says. "We're able to compete nationally and internationally with what we do."
Ann Arbor-based Underground Printing came in at No. 4,911 this year, marking its eight appearance on the list with a 60 percent three-year revenue growth rate.
Underground Printing co-founder Rishi Narayan notes that the eight years weren't consecutive, as the company dropped off the list and landed back on it a few times over the years.
"As you get bigger, it gets harder to rack up those big growth numbers," Narayan says. He attributes the company's success to "embracing the grind" of a low-tech consumer product industry.
"It's all about surviving another year, growing a little bit, making another jump, and then moving on to the next step," Narayan says. "We're in it for the long haul."
The other companies from Washtenaw County who made the list and their three-year revenue growth percentages were:
No. 893: Whiplash Merchandising of Ann Arbor, 558 percent
No. 866: TGW Company of Ann Arbor, 581 percent
No. 1,696: RNA Facilities Management of Ann Arbor, 270 percent
No. 2,318: Akervall Technologies of Saline, 188 percent
No. 2,818: A2 Hosting of Ann Arbor, 146 percent
No. 2,955: SCS Image Group of Ann Arbor, 138 percent
No. 3,529: Nutshell of Ann Arbor, 107 percent
No. 3,982: LLamasoft of Ann Arbor, 89 percent
No. 4,076: InfoReady of Ann Arbor, 86 percent
No. 4,462: DaySmart Software of Ann Arbor, 74 percent
See the full list of companies that made the list at Inc.com.
Sarah Rigg is a freelance writer and editor in Ypsilanti Township. You may reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.