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Wednesday, Dec 7, 2022
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Sectors and Strategies of Fastest Growing Firms

For Karenjo Goodwin, the math is simple: technology plus personality equals growth. The chief executive at Exact Staff Inc. in Woodland Hills has expanded the company’s revenue 30 percent over the last three years to reach $65 million in 2015. It placed No. 41 on the Business Journal’s Fastest Growing Private Companies list. “In a day and age where automation is so important, finding a job is still a very personal experience,” Goodwin said. “As much as I embrace technology, it’s still a high-touch business, and we still have to be very connected with applicants as well as clients.” Several other staffing companies appear on the list, riding the trend of increasing employment in the U.S. economy. Technology is another recurring theme, with cloud computing, e-commerce and online payment providers accounting for nearly a third of the list. Also, precious metal brokers, financial advisors and auto dealers appear multiple times among the 50 companies. Hot sectors Exact Staff’s growth strategy is comprised of a family of companies that targets specific industries. For example, Exact Medicalstaff is tailored to the health care sector, while Exact Techstaff focuses on technology-based occupations. The company attributes much of its success to “putting its associates first,” according to Goodwin. The company personally employs all job-seekers until an organization makes an offer, and the associate accepts. Throughout its 29 locations across the United States, Exact Staff anticipates having approximately 18,000 employees and working with more than 5,000 different companies by the end of the year. “This year, we are up 72 percent in our medical area, and in our information technology security area, we are up 43 percent,” Goodwin said. Ronin Staffing, the No. 15 company on the fastest growing list, reported three-year revenue growth of 121 percent and Career Strategies, ranked No. 31, had growth of 55 percent. The health care industry and its related occupations are expected to have the fastest employment growth, adding the most jobs between 2014 and 2024, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The technology sector is also on the rise with job growth projected to increase 12 percent, adding close to 500,000 jobs by 2024, according to the government agency. It attributes this higher-than-average gain “in part due to a greater emphasis on cloud computing.” Valencia-based Med Tech Solutions, the No. 28 company on the Business Journal’s directory, is a health care cloud computing service. From 2013 to 2015, company revenue was up by 63 percent to $6.4 million. This year, the company launched its new cloud infrastructure, which features all-flash storage, heightened data security as well as full Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act compliance. Its 35 employees are spread across three offices throughout the United States. Some of its other services include information technology support as well as an automated patient registration system. The No. 2 company on the directory is information technology and marketing firm USA Link System of Glendale, which was founded a decade ago by Chief Executive Ally Spinu. “We have grown consistently since 2006, but major growth has happened for the past three years,” she said. Between 2013 and 2015, the company’s revenue has increased a staggering 767 percent to $6.5 million from $800,000. Spinu attributes this exponential jump to more and more companies needing online platforms and promotional services to market their businesses. USA Link System is a technology and marketing firm that designs and develops software in the form of a website or mobile application for a company, manages its search engine optimization as well as markets and promotes the technology product until predetermined goals are met. Spinu said what sets her company apart is its comprehensive approach. When making a software product, a company typically hires a developer, then a search engine optimization specialist and finally a marketing firm to promote the completed product. However, USA Link System streamlines this process for its clients by offering all of these services in a one-stop shop. Currently, the company has four offices, including locations in India, the Philippines and Moldova. In Glendale, USA Link System has 15 employees and in total about 45 to 50 people working for the company. Catering to consumers Further down the list are companies in the retail and consumer service sectors. Food service companies are adding to their revenue, including No. 21 Mendocino Farms of Studio City, restaurant chain Sharkey’s Woodfired Mexican Grill of Westlake Village at No. 45 and fast food franchise Pretzel King of Glendale at No. 49. Mendocino Farms has seen 92 percent revenue growth from 2013 to 2015, bringing in more than $31 million last year. The company has expanded throughout Los Angeles over the past few years and recently received a minority equity investment from grocery chain Whole Foods Market Inc. of Austin, Texas. Mendocino Farms plans to use the capital infusion to further expansion. Keyes Automotive Group, with $2.1 billion in revenue, also appears on the fastest growing list at No. 44 with a three-year growth of 25 percent. The final company on the list is Galpin Motors Inc., the North Hills-based automotive dealership. As oil prices continue to fall and the economy remains on the uptick, more cars are flying off the lots. Last year, drivers in the United States purchased a record-setting 17.5 million vehicles according to Bloomberg. In 2015, Galpin reached more than $1 billion in revenue, representing a 17 percent increase from 2013. The company has close to 1,500 employees throughout the greater San Fernando Valley area working at its Ford, Lincoln, Subaru, Honda, Mazda, Volvo, Volkswagen, Jaguar, Aston Martin and Lotus dealerships. Despite its recent growth spurt, Exact Staff is looking to grow faster by focusing on the expanding health care sector, which, in turn, will further the company’s expansion. However, Exact Staff’s Goodwin said part of the reason her team is able to maintain growth is due to the fact that the company diversifies across sectors and does not solely focus on one. “We never niched our business,” she said. “We touch a lot of different industries. When the food industry is up – which it always is – and when there is a tech bubble, we are still OK.”

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