Meet Our 2018 Fast 50 Honorees

Every year, Utah Business Magazine awards the 50 fastest growing companies in the state. These companies have been in business for five years or more, and are ranked according to their total five-year revenue and their compound annual growth rate. Here are our Fast 50 honorees in order:

Describe your company’s growth in recent years.

Brandon Dewitt | Chief Technology Officer | MX

“The growth at MX over the past few years has been accelerating rapidly. Our customer base has recently grown from 1,100 to 1,800 financial institutions and fintechs. This growth is how we’re moving MX into the future.”

Mike Cameron | CEO | Christopherson Business Travel

“Christopherson’s growth in recent years has been remarkable. In 2010, we set a goal to double our sales within five years. We not only hit that goal one year early, but reached a half-billion dollars in sales for the first time ever. Over the last five years, we’ve grown by 60 percent.”

Case Lawrence | Founder & CEO | CircusTrix

“CircusTrix has been the fastest growing company in Family Entertainment over the last five years. We have been fortunate to be on a pure white space conquest! One of the most important milestones in our growth was jumping the oceans and proving our concept was global—that achievement has exponentially changed our paradigm for how far we can grow into the future.”

Mark Miller | Cofounder, President, & CEO | Foursight Capital

“We have been fortunate to have experienced explosive growth since our inception. Our first four years in business were a whirlwind where revenues grew from nothing to over $43 million. As we have grown to scale, revenue growth has slowed but remained a robust 34 percent in 2017. We expect similar growth in 2018.”

What was the turning point or catalyst for your growth?

Pat Kelliher | Chief Accounting Officer | Vivint Smart Home

“We were a leading security company for nearly a decade before being acquired by the Blackstone Group in 2012 for $2 billion. At the time, it was the largest transaction in Utah history. That investment allowed us to develop our own smart home technology and launch the Vivint Innovation Center.”

Dr. Stephen Neeleman | Founder & Vice Chairman | HealthEquity

“HealthEquity has never experienced exponential growth; it’s mostly been linear. When the Affordable Care Act passed in 2010, many thought the ACA would impede our growth, but with healthcare reform, we’ve seen most of our growth come afterward. Since 2010, we’ve increased our total number of accounts by 15 times and our assets under management has increased by 20 times after the ACA.”

Alan H. Hess | CEO | Hess Travel

“A significant moment in time was the tremendous disruption in the managed travel industry from 1995 to about 2005. Nationally, travel agency locations dropped from about 48,000 to about 7,000 during that time period. Disruption turned out to be an opportunity for us.”


What has been your company’s biggest accomplishment or success so far?

Andrea Kendell | CFO | BioFire Diagnostics

“Our biggest accomplishment is that our product convinced hospitals and physicians that rapid syndromic testing is a good idea and provides significant medical value. A single test that empowers the physician with answers, offers better patient care, and saves lives. Answers that were not previously possible.”

Brock Blake | Founder & CEO| Lendio

“In June of this year, Lendio reached a tremendous growth milestone: helping to facilitate more than $850 million in small business loans. We’re incredibly excited about the impact that this $850 million is having on the American economy, and more importantly, that we have been able to fuel the dreams of more than 45,000 small business owners across the US and parts of Canada.”

Scott Johnson | Founder & CEO | Motivosity

“Delivering software that people love that delivers a big value within a company. That’s a hard thing to do. We have over 500 five-star reviews online. That’s pretty cool.”

Rebecca Yates | CEO | Ark Insurance Solutions, LLC

“We were fortunate enough to develop some community partnerships. This gave us the opportunity to provide informational workshops in both English and Spanish to communities that wouldn’t normally have access. As a result of this, we hit huge numbers, including breaking through to the highest award offers.”

Devin Johnson | Founder & CEO | FirstMile

“Staying in business. We compete with some of the world’s largest companies and to be able to compete with them with a bootstrapped model speaks volumes about the true value we are creating. Seeing the opportunity this company provides for our employees and seeing new employees every week and month is one of the most rewarding parts of the job. We have some of the most talented people in the workforce.”

What is a principle or philosophy that has helped you grow?

Steve Elder | COO | Xyngular 

“A key word to describe our strategic philosophy is ‘intentional.’ We focus on certain business functions that others may overlook and strive for excellence in how we approach it. We are very intentional with how we approach our call center service. We are very intentional with how we approach data analytics to drive value. We strive to master the fundamentals and then when we add a unique idea; it really accelerates our growth.”

Fred Cooper | Founder & CEO | ARIIX

“It sounds cliché, but keeping your customer happy. That’s truly it. Without that philosophy, you have nothing as a company.”

Bryan Phelps | Founder & CEO | Big Leap

“Lose now to win later. In the pursuit of growth and revenue, people often do and say anything to try to win now. However, business is built on reputation, connections, and experiences. We’ve never been willing to sacrifice ethics, quality, or reputation just to win now. Over time, we’ve found that helps us win later.”

What is something you know now about growth that you wish you had known early on?

Jeff Pedersen | Founder & CEO | Cariloha

“Make sure your business is in an industry that has momentum. At Cariloha we offer soft, cool, clean, and green products. It’s exactly what customers want today and in the years to come. They don’t just want a product; they want to make a difference in their lifestyle and the world. Cariloha is doing just that.”

Kevin Hadlock | CFO | Conservice

“Even though it can be scary, if handled right, growth can be a lot of fun. Life is how you view it.”

Dan Burton | CEO | Health Catalyst

“The problems and challenges associated with growth are far more preferred than the problems associated with stagnation. You’ll always have problems and challenges, but it’s much more pleasant to deal with growth-related problems, and you have more resources at your disposal to address those challenges.”

David S. Layton | President & CEO | Layton Construction Company, LLC 

“Plan for growth and embrace it! Even though it’s hard, and at times, intimidating, it is the healthiest aspect of our company. It’s like spreading fertilizer on opportunities for our people. Growth helps us embrace that winning spirit and culture.”

What is something that came alongside your growth that you never anticipated but had to deal with?

Casey Adams | President | Visible Supply Chain Management

“Management as an intentional and important discipline. We were a bit too much like Henry Ford and thought management was organic.”

Chris Smith | President | Landmark Home Warranty

“One of our biggest challenges, as we grew, was knowing who we were and maintaining the commitment to that philosophy. We knew this would be a challenge but didn’t realize how quickly it would creep up on us. It would have been much easier to cut costs or move away from our culture, but instead, we continued to invest in our staff and be true to who we are.”

Is there anything innovative or unique you’ve done to maintain your rapid growth?

Scott Brandley | Cofounder | Shopper Approved

“I think that the formula for our rapid growth would be: having a very attractive Unique Selling Proposition + our amazing sales team selling directly to B2B = rapid sustainable growth.”

Chris Holt | Founder & CEO | Campman

“We learned how to navigate the Amazon ecosystem. A lot of tough years learning the hard way of how things work. We used this knowledge to help our vendors protect their brands and tell their story.”

What are you most proud of in terms of your growth?

Laura Butler | SVP of People & Culture | Workfront

“We are changing the way people work. Workfront has helped thousands of companies successfully transform their businesses into modern enterprises that increase revenue, improve customer experiences, and eliminate cost, including BT, Cisco Systems, Comcast, Fender Musical Instruments Corporation, Fossil Group, TSB, and Trek.”

Chad Farnsworth | CEO | Volo Freight

“I’m floored that we’ve accomplished what we have, totally organically. We have not raised any capital. No seed money. No investors. No debt. It’s all been because of sheer will, grit, ingenuity, and determination. There have been more sleepless nights than I can count. Always trying to come up with new ways to break through barriers, eliminate doubt, and often having a serious 2AM ‘gut check’ session.”

Eric Rea | Cofounder & CEO | Podium

“At our Christmas party last year, we had all of our employees and their guests there. In all, it was almost 600 people. It was the first time that I had the chance to visually see how much impact this company had on so many people and families in that way. It was an emotional thing to see how much Podium is positively impacting all those families. It made me proud how Podium is creating those kinds of opportunities as we grow.”

Aaron Call | EVP of Sales & Operations | G&A Partners

“Growth is awesome and exciting, but I am equally, if not even more, proud of retaining our clients and watching them grow. We have been able to maintain a client retention rate above 95 percent for five straight years. It means a lot to us when clients say, ‘this is the best business decision I have ever made.’  The fact that we can be an integral part of a business’s success is incredibly rewarding.”

Cory Tholl | President | Klymit

“When I took over as CEO in 2011, we had a lot of debt, and I’m really proud we have been able to maintain a good growth trajectory without incoming capital from outside sources. We’ve just been able to do it with our banking institution and just selling our product, and that’s been really exciting.”

Emerging 8

What excites you most about your company’s potential?

Doug Robinson | CEO | LGCY Power

“I’m most excited about the opportunity to impact people, to impact a community, and to impact the world. I believe that we are all far more capable than we allow ourselves to believe. I believe the impact that we can have is tremendous. Impacting excites me more than anything else!”

Rachel Nilsson | Founder & CEO | Rags Apparel

“We have created our own product category. There is nothing out there quite like it. We have such an unbelievable customer base who loves the brand and the product. In fact, 86 percent of our consumers come back and repurchase. This is because the product is truly innovative and looks great as well. I know we have barely scratched the surface as far as growth and product goes. I am excited to start creating cool clothing for my older boys as well. Honestly, the sky’s the limit.”

Tucker Stoffers | President | Adduco Media

“The digital marketing industry is moving so fast, and its level of integration with traditional business operations is growing every day. Established companies and startups alike are seeing the power of combining marketing and technology not only to reach new customers but for more accurate revenue attribution and the optimization of employee workflows. We are in a strong position to take advantage of this inflection point.”

Ryan Lee | CEO | Blue Raven Solar

“Many renewable energy sources, and solar in particular, are still relatively young industries in regards to their impact on residential markets. Less than 5 percent of homes in the US have solar, so there is so much growth potential in the industry across the country. However, this is not a simple business. Companies have to manage many complexities, including regulatory concerns, unique supply chain models, and multi-step sales and operations processes. We feel that we are well equipped to handle these challenges and are confident that we can capture a significant piece of this growing market.”

Lindsay Bicknell is the project coordinator for Utah Business magazine. A native of Cincinnati, Ohio, she graduated from Miami University of Oxford with a degree in communications. She has a background in television, print, and web media, as well as public relations and event planning. As a transplant to Salt Lake City, she can't get enough of the mountains and loves snowboarding.