Reports Fantastic 50

Critical technology

Synaptek helps clients meet their mission goals

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Kamran Jinnah and two co-founders planned the company
for nearly two years before they launched it in 2008.

Synaptek Corp.

Synaptek Corp.’s technology often is used in situations where lives are at stake.

In 2014, the company created a wireless network for the Department of Veterans Affairs that allows it to locate at a moment’s notice equipment needed for patient care, such as EKG machines or infusion pumps.

“That was the largest deployment of wireless systems in the world, commercial or otherwise,” says the company’s CEO, Kamran Jinnah. “It has 120,000 wireless access points.”

Synaptek’s work ranges from IT service solutions, technical support and strategic planning to systems and software engineering, network engineering and cybersecurity. In addition to the VA, its customers include the Defense Department, other federal agencies, state and local governments, and commercial enterprises.

The company focuses on providing cost-effective solutions and support that enable its customers to improve services, increase efficiencies and better perform their missions.

Jinnah, company President David Gauldfeldt and Chief Operating Officer Michael Haskett founded Reston-based Synaptek in 2008. “All three of us had run multi-$100 million business systems for Fortune 500 large system integrators,” Jinnah says. “We had known each other for more than 20 years. We planned the company for nearly two years before we launched it.”

From 2011 to 2014, the company’s revenue rose 1,080.2 percent, making it the Vanguard winner among technology companies in this year’s Fantastic 50.

Since its founding, the company has completed a variety of large-scale projects. For example, it supports a complex enterprise network for the Pentagon. “Each of the Armed Forces has a different mission, and those different missions have different systems. You don’t want one system to affect another,” Jinnah says. “This network provides the appropriate boundaries to ensure security for each of their unique missions.”

Synaptek also developed a commercial application for iPads called iTox. The app helps medical personnel using Botulinum toxin in treating neurological disorders. “All of the injection points in the neck and face were being recorded by a paper-based process,” Jinnah says. Using the app, doctors can record the information digitally and put it in the patient’s medical record. “That type of app could be used widely,” Jinnah says.

The company understands the “pace of technology today and the need to have a comprehensive well-planned information management environment,” Gauldfeldt says. “[The company motto] ‘Technology moving at the speed of thought’ embodies these principles — the need to nimbly utilize the best that information technology offers to meet the business needs of our government customers.”

The company’s revenue has grown consistently since 2009. In addition to being named to the Fantastic 50 this year, the company was included in Washington Technology’s Fast 50 in 2014 and 2015. “Our number of employees has grown in line with revenue,” Jinnah says. “The first year we had four employees, and we have just under 100 now.”

The company has offices in Reston and in New Orleans. It has operations in 22 states. “Those are remote telework virtual staff members,” Jinnah says. “Many of our employees operate out of their home or on the road.”

Last year Synaptek was recognized by the Best Workplaces for Commuters program for offering benefits such as telework and emergency ride home programs and FSA benefits for commuters.

“We are a green company. People don’t want to spend one hour in their car going back and forth to work,” he says. “We work virtually with Skype and instant messaging. We can share a desktop with any employee at any time. So, where you sit becomes less important. Our employees are happier and more productive.”

The company’s work can be cyclical because of the process involved in getting contracts. “We have 23 projects under evaluation, but none have been awarded,” Jinnah says. “It’s a challenging environment because there are always delays.”

Synaptek has been working with a major telecommunications provider for 18 months to become one of its master approved vendors for wireless networks. “We are going through final approvals now,” Jinnah says.

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