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October 4, 2007



UMD Executive MBA
Houlihan Lokey
Cardinal Bank
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Nothing like a beautiful, still summery-evening at Sequoia in Georgetown on Tuesday to take in the river breezes and salute the 50 fastest growing companies in Maryland and Virginia. Deloitte, now the largest consulting firm in DC, together with WilmerHale, NASDAQ, and SmartCEO magazine, hosted the swank event during which over 350 guests nibbled on Thai chicken satay and chit-chatted about their respective companies’ quadruple-digit growth.

Deloitte regional Managing Partner Gary Tabach and colleague Greg Pellegrino flank Crosshill Financial Group’s Stephen Graham. Gary told us that winners are invited to ring the opening bell at the NASDAQ exchange on a date this fall. (That’s a lot better than ringing the closing bell, don’t you think—what if it’s a bad session?) Fast 50 winners were selected based on percentage revenue growth over five years from 2002 to 2006.

40,000% growth sounds like the stuff of fantasy, but it’s reality for SkyBitz. Bob Blair and John Tagawa of the Sterling-based, systems security company ranked #1 in Virginia growth.

This year’s Maryland winner, V-Empower, Inc’s Amir Malik, left, with LanceSoft’s Ajit Walker, CSI Engineering’s Arjun Banarjee, and LanceSoft’s Neelu Modali on the deck overlooking the Kennedy Center. Amir tells us V Empower, started in the States in ‘01, has not only expanded to India but this year broke into China. He’s been busy traveling for the IT security company – this year he’s been to England, Dubai, India, China, Pakistan, Kazakhstan, and Kyrgyzstan. More impressive is that he knew how to spell all the countries' names for us.

We didn’t even have to tell this group to get in close and smile like they’re a happy family – modeling agencies, you owe us a referral fee. MWR Consulting’s Theresa Blaner and Sarah St. Clair, Visicu’s Robert Pepper, Smart CFO Magazine’s Jaime Nespor-Park, and UBS’ Ritchie Park. Jaime and Ritchie are still in the throes of newlywed bliss; they were married this summer in Ellicott City, MD.

Center for Innovative Technology president Pete Jobse, left, with Tresys’ Frank Mayer and Craig Sutherland. Pete spent the summer in Assateague Island in search of “loggable waves” – in case you didn’t know, that’s longboarder surf-speak for a good ride. Craig has become a soccer-dad now that he’s coaching 5-year-olds in the art of control dribbling and ball-shielding; he admits it’s more in the category of “herding cats.”


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