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The Inner City 100

100 street-smart companies.

11. Barcoding

Revenue growth from 1999 to 2003 1,840%
Revenue for 2003 15.3 million
Full-time employees in 2003 50

Baltimore

Barcoding sells...barcoding, every aspect of it. Jay Steinmetz says he sees every and any kind of company as a potential addition to his roster of 1,200 customers. Steinmetz also expects to build a strong business in radio frequency identification, or RFID, tags.

12. Dynetech

Revenue growth from 1999 to 2003 1,625%
Revenue for 2003 113.8 million
Full-time employees in 2003 300

Orlando

Through acquisitions and a spate of hiring, Dynetech has doubled in size in the past year. The company is a business process outsourcer, or BPO; it handles a wide range of functions for clients, from software development to sales and marketing analysis. Dynetech recently contracted to put up a new building in downtown Orlando. Why? CEO Larry Pino says "nothing can beat the energy" of his neighborhood.

13. Tripwire

Revenue growth from 1999 to 2003 1,429%
Revenue for 2003 18.7 million
Full-time employees in 2003 72

Portland, Oreg.

Despite its business success, the past two years have been difficult for Tripwire, a network-security software company. A little over a year ago, the company's CEO, Wyatt Starnes, stepped down to recover from treatment for throat cancer. Jim Johnson, a 27-year Intel veteran, was hired to replace Starnes, and co-founder Gene Kim remains as chief technology officer.

14. RetroBox

Revenue growth from 1999 to 2003 1,403%
Revenue for 2003 10.3 million
Full-time employees in 2003 92

Columbus, Ohio

RetroBox, which helps businesses donate or resell their outdated computer equipment, completed another round of private equity in 2004 -- and increased EBITDA tenfold to boot, according to CEO Stampp Corbin.

15. Auction Systems Auctioneers & Appraisers

Revenue growth from 1999 to 2003 1,331%
Revenue for 2003 9.1 million
Full-time employees in 2003 42

Phoenix

ASAA's auctions are conducted both live and over the Internet, with 70% of revenue coming from online bidders. Last year, CEO Deborah Weidenhamer signed a lease for a larger office building downtown; in addition to tax breaks, the city of Phoenix offered an education grant to pay for a semester of Spanish for her employees.

16. Intelliseek

Revenue growth from 1999 to 2003 1,245%
Revenue for 2003 4.1 million
Full-time employees in 2003 45

Cincinnati

Newly promoted CEO Mike Nazzaro says his market research firm's latest and greatest development is a free blog portal called Blogpulse.com. It allows users to search for information across more than nine million blogs.

17. VisionIT

Revenue growth from 1999 to 2003 1,175%
Revenue for 2003 6 million
Full-time employees in 2003 63

Detroit

VisionIT provides IT and engineering staffing (both contract and direct-hire employees) for large companies including Ford, GM, Siemans, and Dell. To bring more diversity into IT, founder David Segura, a grandson of Mexican immigrants, offers scholarships and internships to students who are Hispanic or African American.

18. Ikano Communications

Revenue growth from 1999 to 2003 1,156%
Revenue for 2003 27.7 million
Full-time employees in 2003 325

Salt Lake City

Ikano creates private-label Internet services, anything from wireless access to Web-hosting to spam-filtering. The company also recently launched two new services under its own name: a high-speed Internet provider called Power- DSL and a VoIP product called PowerVoice. CEO Henry Smith has been on a buying spree, acquiring 14 competitors in eight months.

19. BankServ

Revenue growth from 1999 to 2003 1,090%
Revenue for 2003 10.1 million
Full-time employees in 2003 57

San Francisco

BankServ manages the secure electronic transfer of money for banks and other commercial clients. Since Dave Kvederis expanded the busi- ness last year by acquiring two London companies, it has added 258 new customers in 51 countries. BankServ's multinational staff gives it an edge, Kvederis says. The company recently landed clients in China thanks in large part to the fact that several employees speak Mandarin and Cantonese.

20. Co-Advantage Resources

Revenue growth from 1999 to 2003 964%
Revenue for 2003 98.5 million
Full-time employees in 2003 105

Orlando

Co-Advantage performs back office functions such as payroll, HR, insurance, and benefit management for clients in 33 states. Last December, CEO Dayne Williams sold roughly half of the business, a division focused on large corporations, to a local firm.

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