Third annual Gator100 Awards honor UF entrepreneurs
GAINESVILLE, Fla. – The University of Florida recognized the 2017 Gator100 honorees on Friday at the university’s Reitz Union Grand Ballroom.
The Gator100, presented by UF, the Warrington College of Business and its Entrepreneurship & Innovation Center, celebrates the world’s 100 fastest-growing businesses led or owned by UF alumni. Companies are ranked by compound annual growth rate over the past three years. Nine companies topped a 100% compound annual growth rate this year after only five companies reached that mark at last year’s event. The full rankings from the event can be found here.
Of the 100 companies honored, 40 total and 11 of the top 25 are led or owned by Warrington alumni. The event showcased alumni from 12 different UF Colleges and businesses from 13 different states, totaling $3.4 billion of revenue in 2015.
AGTC was the top-ranked company with a compound annual growth rate of 547.684%. The Alachua-based company uses gene therapy to develop treatments for patients that have diseases caused by broken genes. President and CEO Sue Washer received her MBA from the Warrington College of Business in 1992.
Blakeland Construction Services (315.363%), led by UF’s College of Engineering alumna and President Annette Cornwell Bauer, came in second. RotoGrinders.com (227.149%), a fantasy sports website led by Warrington alumnus and COO and Co-Founder Cameron MacMillan, came in third.
Emerald C’s Development, Inc. (178.761%), led by UF’s College of Design, Construction and Planning alumna and President Brittany Culbreth, came in fourth. Orangetheory Fitness, led by UF’s College of Public Health & Health Professions (BHS ’00) and Warrington College of Business (MSM ’01) alumnus and Founder David Long, came in fifth.
The other companies that surpassed the 100% compound annual growth rate mark were NuJak Companies, Inc. (123.572%), BEA Architects, Inc. (120.63%), Veteran Energy, LLC (104.656%), and Carlton Construction, Inc. (101.577%).
Lifdek Corporation received the Pinnacle Award, which recognizes an established, Gator-led business that has made a significant impact over time through job creation, revenue generation and innovation in their industry. The company was founded by Neil Schopke (BCE ’62) and two business partners.
To be considered for the Gator100, companies must have been in business for five years or more as of Oct. 1, 2016 and have had verifiable annual revenues of $250,000 or more in 2013.
Additionally, a UF alumnus or alumni must have met one of the following three leadership criteria:
- A University of Florida alumnus or group of alumni must have owned 50% or more of the company from Jan. 1, 2012 through Oct. 1, 2015.
- A University of Florida alumnus must have served as the company’s chief executive (for example: chairman, CEO, president or managing partner) from Jan. 1, 2012 through Oct. 1, 2015.
- A University of Florida alumnus must have founded the company and been active as a member of the most senior management team from Jan. 1, 2012 through Oct. 1, 2015.