Nearly half of the 100 fastest-growing companies in this year’s Bulldog 100 are owned or operated by Terry College alumni. The UGA Alumni Association honored the businesses at the Bulldog 100 Celebration Jan. 27 at the Hyatt Regency in Atlanta.
The fastest-growing business, ranked No. 1, was Saucehouse Barbeque, co-founded by Christopher Belk (AB’05, MBA ’13). Belk is from North Carolina and his co-founder is from Alabama. The pair wanted to highlight the regional differences in barbecue, so customers are offered a variety of sauces for their slow-smoked meats and homemade sides. The restaurant and catering company is based in Athens and serves breakfast, lunch and dinner.
The Bulldog 100 top 10 includes:
2. Robinson Key, Atlanta
3. Biren Patel Engineering, Atlanta
4. Chicken Salad Chick, Auburn, Alabama
5. Kabbage Inc., Atlanta
6. stable | kernel, Atlanta
7. Crisp Video Group, Atlanta
8. Calhoun Sands Valuation & Advisory Inc., Atlanta
9. Calder & Colegrove Investment Group, Suwanee
10. Microf LLC, Albany
This year’s list featured 101 businesses, with a tie for No. 45. In all, 49 of them are owned or operated by Terry College graduates. The class includes companies in a variety of industries, including pharmaceuticals, law, IT, consulting, retail and pest control. Companies as far as California and New York are on the list.
The Atlanta office of Warren Averett CPAs and Advisors partnered with the UGA Alumni Association to review nominated businesses’ financial records to determine the ranked list. Nominations were accepted between February and May 2017. About 500 nominations were received for the 2018 Bulldog 100. Each organization must have been in business since 2013, earned revenues in excess of $100,000 for the 2014 calendar year and be led by a former UGA student who owns at least 50 percent of the company or is the CEO, president or managing partner.
The Bulldog 100 recognizes the fastest-growing businesses regardless of size by focusing on a three-year compounded annual growth rate. The average compounded annual growth rate for this year’s Bulldog 100 businesses was 47 percent.
During the event, the UGA Alumni Association presented the inaugural Michael J. Bryan Award to Mark Mahoney (BBA ’83), the owner of Jackrabbit Technologies Inc. in Huntersville, North Carolina. It also unveiled the Michael J. Bryan Scholarship Fund, which will support students who have financial need and demonstrate an entrepreneurial spirit.
Bryan (BBA ’89), the co-founder and managing partner of Vino Venue and Atlanta Wine School in Dunwoody, Georgia, passed away in 2017 after a long battle with cancer. His business was recognized during the 2017 Bulldog 100 Celebration as the only company to make the list since the program’s inception in 2010. The award recognizes entrepreneurial spirit and sustained business growth.
“The UGA Alumni Association is excited to honor our graduates who are founding and leading these prosperous enterprises,” said Bonney Shuman (BBA ’80), president of the UGA Alumni Association. “It is even more inspiring to see the impact that these businesses have on our students. Many of our Bulldog 100 honorees provide students with scholarships and internships that prepare them for success after graduation. It’s invaluable for students to network with these accomplished business leaders, and for the honorees to remain connected to campus by investing in student success.”
For more information about the Michael J. Bryan Scholarship Fund, to view the complete list of 2018 Bulldog 100 businesses, or nominate a business for the 2019 Bulldog 100, see the website. Nominations are being accepted through May 31, 2018.