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Saturday, Sep 23, 2023

50 Fastest Growing Private Companies 2017: IPI CONstruction

Panorama City CEO: Long Nguyen Growth Rate: 208% About 90 percent of IPI Construction’s business comes from the federal government. The company works for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Air Force and Navy. One of its specialties is building out recruitment centers for the military services. “We travel from Ventura all the way to San Diego for any federal work,” Chief Executive Long Nguyen told the Business Journal. “When you do a good job, they want you back.” The company started in 2003. Two years later it applied to the Small Business Administration’s 8(a) Business Development Program and received authorization to bid on federal contracts as a general contractor. The 8(a) program helps disadvantaged business owners develop their company. “Through the award of sole source and set-aside contracts, the 8(a) program provides market access and growth for qualified businesses,” the SBA explains on its website. “The ultimate objective, however, is to prepare small disadvantaged firms to compete for procurement and other business opportunities.” For a few years, Nguyen worked exclusively on federal contracts. However, as part of the program, a company must diversify its revenue base, he explained. As a result, IPI qualified to work for the state, cities and transportation agencies. Currently IPI’s biggest job is a $6 million retrofit and interior improvement project for a four-story office building owned by the San Bernardino County. “We started out with $200,000 volume a year, and now we have $8 million in pending work,” Nguyen said. The company reported revenue of $7.7 million last year and a growth rate since 2014 of 208 percent. Last year IPI graduated from 8(a). Now it must compete against much larger companies for federal contracts, but Nguyen feels the program taught him how to bid and win business. “In 8(a), there are negotiated contracts, but you still have to submit a detailed bid,” he said. “We learned to do bidding. … I’m looking to do about $10 million next year.” – Joel Russell

Joel Russel
Joel Russel
Joel Russell joined the Los Angeles Business Journal in 2006 as a reporter. He transferred to sister publication San Fernando Valley Business Journal in 2012 as managing editor. Since he assumed the position of editor in 2015, the Business Journal has been recognized four times as the best small-circulation tabloid business publication in the country by the Alliance of Area Business Publishers. Previously, he worked as senior editor at Hispanic Business magazine and editor of Business Mexico.

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