REAL ESTATE: MATT MALONE
CEO AND OWNER, GROUNDWORKS COS., VIRGINIA BEACH
Malone, the son of an enlisted sailor and a telephone operator, has said his blue-collar upbringing led him to believe that the U.S. economy undervalues men and women in the skilled trades and blue-collar workforce. His goal with Groundworks, a foundation services company he started in 2016, is to give those workers a career, not just a job.
Before Groundworks, Malone started the professional buyout firm Succession Capital Partners and worked in finance.
Groundworks provides foundation and water management solutions, including foundation repair, basement waterproofing, crawl space repair and encapsulation and concrete lifting services. When he first started the company, Malone began purchasing mom-and-pop foundation repair businesses in several states and centralized their training, accounting, marketing, human resources and customer service operations.
As a result, Groundworks grew its footprint significantly, becoming one of the 10 fastest-growing private businesses in Hampton Roads by 2019, according to the 2020 Inc. 5000 list. In November 2021, the company made its 21st acquisition: a small concrete company in Philadelphia. Groundworks has 17 brands, 41 offices and more than 3,500 employees.
EDUCATION: Hampden-Sydney College (bachelor’s degree in managerial economics), University of Glasgow in Scotland (master’s degree in international finance)