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Richard Bracken, CEOWilliam E. Crenshaw, CEOJohn EdwardsonJohn Tu, CEOLee McIntire, CEORuss Fradin, CEOR. Marcelo Claure, CEOJohn Menzer, CEOCraig Morrison, CEO
2010 Revenue: $30.7 billion
Three-Year Growth: 14.24%
Based in Nashville, the Hospital Corporation of America has been providing hospital and healthcare services to Americans since 1986. The company, which serves about 14 million patients a year, operates 164 hospitals and 106 outpatient centers, including an international arm that operates in the United Kingdom. The hospital chain was bought out for $21.3 billion by Bain Capital and Kohlberg Kravis Roberts. The buyers agreed to assume $11.7 billion in debt. HCA filed for a $4.6 billion IPO in December of last year, and ranked at no. 4,512 on the 2010 Inc. 5000 list.
2010 Revenue: $25.1 billion
Three-Year Growth: 9.2%
George W. Jenkins, founder of Publix Supermarket, started his first store in Winter Haven, Fla. in 1930 with little more than $1,300 in his pocket. Jenkins died in 1996 at the age of 88. Today, his is the largest employee-owned supermarket chain in the United States, employing more than 149,000 workers at more than 1,030 supermarkets and manufacturing and distribution centers in Florida and Georgia. Publix has been recognized as one of Fortune’s “100 Best Companies to Work For” for 14 consecutive years.
Vernon Hills, Ill.
2010 Revenue: $8.8 billion
Three-Year Growth: 8.06%
This provider of technology solutions got its start in 1982 when a young man named Michael Krasny sold his used IBM computer through a classified ad, then decided it was about time someone start selling computers directly to customers. He founded CDW in 1984. Today the company employs more than 6,300 workers. At the end of June, John Edwardson, who more than doubled company revenues to $8.8 billion over his tenure, was succeeded as CEO by Thomas Richardson, who had previously served the company as president and COO.
Fountain Valley, Calif.
2010 Revenue: $6.5 billion
Three-Year Growth: 42.77%
A manufacturer of memory devices for computers and other electronics, Kingston Technology was founded by two AST Research runaways in 1987. By 1990, and without any help from venture capitalists, they were pulling in $140 million in sales, and in 1992 they topped the Inc. 500 list. When co-founders David Sun (right) and John Tu (left) sold eighty percent of the business to Softbank in 1996 for $1.5 billion, they distributed $100 million of the sale price to employees in bonuses. They stayed on with the company and, when Softbank offered to sell ownership back to them in 1999, Sun and Tu regained control of their company for $450 million.
2010 Revenue: $5.4
Three-Year Growth: 23.92%
Like a handful of other companies on this list, CH2M Hill had its genesis in the early half of the last century. Holly Cornell, James Howland, and T. Burke Hayes – the C and two Hs – were students at Oregon State College in the mid-30s when they met the M, civil engineering professor Fred Merryfield. In 1946, they founded a company that today employees more than 23,000. The company’s name was rounded out in 1971 when CH2M merged with Clair A. Hill & Associates. Recent projects for the full-service global engineering firm have included a contract in 2007 for the $5.25 billion expansion of the Panama Canal.
2010 Revenue: $5 billion
Three-Year Growth: 6.28%
This software and technology service provider employs 20,000 people across 70 countries. From its home base in Wayne, Pa., SunGard, which was founded in 1983, works with clients in financial services, higher education, and the public sector. Russell Fradin replaced Cristobal Conde as CEO in May of this year. Conde had served as chief executive since 2002.
2010 Revenue: $4.6 billion
Three-Year Growth: 32.08%
Brightstar provides wireless services to clients around the globe. Over the past thirteen years, Brightstar CEO R. Marcelo Claure, who has been honored for his accomplishments as a Latino businessman, has expanded his company’s products and client base to provide more than 100 services in 51 countries and territories. In April of this year, Brightstar filed a $300 million initial public offering with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
2010 Revenue: $4 billion
Three-Year Growth: 4.38%
Whether you’re a decoupage-loving elementary school art teacher or a grandmother who knits Fair Isle sweaters, Michaels can meet your arts and crafts needs. After building a base of 16 stores in Texas, Michaels went public in 1984. Public trading ceased in late 2006 after a deal that returned the company to private ownership. The company now operates Michaels stores in 49 states and Canada, as well as the Aaron Brothers chain of stores in eleven states.
Momentive Performance Materials Holdings
2010 Revenue: $3.8 billion
Three-Year Growth: 49.96%
The inventors of Bakelite, an early form of plastic out of which some of Kodak’s Brownie cameras were made, this company today makes high-performance materials with names like Fomrez Catalyst UL-38. Even if Momentive Performance Material Holdings abandoned consumer-friendly naming, the company remains committed to providing the best possible products to its clients in the aerospace, telecommunications, and healthcare fields, among other industries.
Burlington Coat Factory
2010 Revenue: $3.7 billion
Three-Year Growth: 7.8%
The first Burlington Coat Factory was an actual coat factory in Burlington, N.J. that company founder Henrietta Milstein bought with her husband, Monroe, in 1972. She’d first urged her husband to purchase the factory, and when he declined on the advice of his father, Henrietta put forward savings from her job as an elementary school librarian to cover the $75,000 down payment.