Growth pace of 2008 winner is the highest since 2004

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Northern Virginia service companies continue to dominate the Fantastic 50, an annual list of the 50 fastest-growing private companies in Virginia.

The top company in the 2008 list is Oberon Associates Inc., a Manassas-based engineering and information technology company that serves many government and military customers. Its revenues soared 4,732 percent in four years.

The Fantastic 50, now in its 13th year, is compiled annually by the Virginia Chamber of Commerce and the accounting firm Goodman & Co. The list of privately held companies is based on revenue growth over a four-year period, this time from 2003 through 2006.

The pace of Oberon’s growth is the highest recorded on the list since 2004. In fact, the company’s percentage was more than twice the 2,201 percent of last year’s leader, T-Solutions of Chesapeake. T-Solutions is third on this year’s list with a four-year growth rate of 2,009 percent.

While Oberon is the overall winner, the Fantastic 50 list also honors four other companies as revenue growth leaders in their industry categories. They are: TRINITY Group Construction Inc. of Herndon in the service category, 2,083 percent; Service Center Metals of Prince George in manufacturing, 1,940 percent; Ace Info Solutions of Reston
in technology, 986 percent; and Dominion Equipment Parts of Ashland in retail/wholesale, 215 percent.

Oberon is one of 34 Northern Virginia companies on the list, the dominant region for fast-growth firms for many years. Another seven represent Hampton Roads, while six are from Central Virginia. Two companies are based in Southwest Virginia, Adaptive Technologies Inc. in Blacksburg and MTC Transformers in Wytheville. (MTC, formerly Magnetic Technologies Corp., also was a finalist in Virginia Business’ Small Business Story for 2007.) One company, Amthor International in Gretna, is from Southern Virginia.

Oberon also is among 28 newcomers on the Fantastic 50 this year. In fact, newcomers made a big impact on top rankings. They occupied four of the top five spots and seven of the top 10 positions.

Half the companies on the 2007 Fantastic 50 are service companies while 17 are technology firms, five are manufacturers and three are involved in retail/wholesale businesses.

Sixteen of the companies on the list were founded in 2000 or later. Among the top five firms, Oberon. TRINITY and T-Solutions were started in 2002, while Service Center Metals began in 2003 and Executive Protection Systems was launched in 2001.

To be eligible for the list, a company must have revenue of at least $200,000 in 2003, the base year. The company must make a profit by 2006 and have revenue of less than $100 million in its most recent fiscal year.

Officials from all 50 companies received awards at a banquet May 1 at the Westfields Marriott in Chantilly.

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