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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    8,299

    Web hosting entrepreneurs (and WHT visitors) as Inc entrepreneur of the year.

    For some of you that say web hosting isn't all that "big" of a field. Here's some numbers that say otherwise.

    First up, is Dan Ushman, WHT user and President of MidPhase;
    Dan Ushman and I started midPhase with $2,000 on credit cards when I was 20, and he was 18, both still in college. We had both been doing business together through much of high school, running online advertising-related businesses. In 2003, we started midPhase, a web hosting company that focused on providing affordable web hosting solutions to SME's, and we did so from different states. In the first six years, in a very competitive industry we gained 1,000 clients, and decided to take our business to the next level, and consolidate and open an office in Chicago where our servers were located. We built the business entirely on cash-flow, and have been profitable since our second month. We had to make it work, and we did. We put in 12 hours a day each, so that between the two of us we could offer 24 hour phone support, and we grew quickly based on word of mouth.

    We now have two offices, over 30 employees, and 40,000 customers with expected revenues this year of over 5 million. Dan is an excellent candidate for entrepreneur of the year, because of his drive for customer service, and ability to think outside the box, and develop marketing campaigns in a very competitive industry. We were ranked, in an industry of over 40,000 competitors 5th fastest growing hosting company.

    Dan actually nominated me for Entrepreneur of the Year, and I've apparently been put into the finalists, which is a great honor; however, the growth that we've achieved wouldn't be possible without Dan, and he continues to be at least an equal contributor in our growth today.
    And President of RackSpace, Graham Weston;
    In 1998, Graham Weston invested seed capital in an idea presented by three Trinity University students to supply and lease hardware and connectivity to get businesses on line. Graham immediately took on the role as CEO, steering Rackspace Managed Hosting as it carved out a leadership position in the Internet infrastructure market.

    Weston’s leadership skills were tested during the dot.com crash, but Weston guided the company through the difficult few years, focusing on serving their customers. Rather than installing automated phone systems to save money, Rackspace provided live customer support technicians over the phone 24/7/365 – they wanted to make it easy for customers to get help. Competitors, on the other hand, spent money developing new markets and investing heavily in new data centers. As competitors were forced into bankruptcy or acquired, Weston found Rackspace in a strong position, with a track record of superior customer service that attracted many of the big-name customers from those competitors.

    Less than 8 years after its inception, Rackspace has grown by over 50% annually, closing 2005 with $139 million in revenue. The company today boasts 7 data centers across the U.S. and U.K., over 10,000 customers and Rackspace just broke the monumental 1,000 employee mark! Weston attributes the company’s escalating success to their focus on serving their customers.
    You can cast your vote at www.inc.com/entreprener

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    24,009
    In 2003, we started midPhase, a web hosting company that focused on providing affordable web hosting solutions to SME's, and we did so from different states. In the first six years, in a very competitive industry we gained 1,000 clients . . .
    Someone's out with the math there. Six years from 2003 would be 2009, and we aint there yet.

    Also both hosts above are private companies, so there's no way to verify their client base size and annual revenues. 40,000 separate paying clients for midiphase also doesn't seem right.

    But good luck to them and yes, there is plenty of life left in the hosting business for those hard working entrepreneurs.
    AussieHost.com Aussie Bob, host since 2001
    Host Multiple Domains on Fast Australian Servers!!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Posts
    3,352
    verifty or not, it is very nice to see that hosting is not dead as some have said.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Indiana
    Posts
    1,192
    I'm not sure if anyone cares to know, but there is definitely potential. I'm a college student and received an entrepreneur scholarship for my business

    It's not the largest one, but I got a really big fake check, and every little bit helps.
    Ankit Gupta - Cernax Hosting
    "We're always second in the industry, the customer comes first."

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Posts
    3,352
    Quote Originally Posted by Anky
    I'm not sure if anyone cares to know, but there is definitely potential. I'm a college student and received an entrepreneur scholarship for my business

    It's not the largest one, but I got a really big fake check, and every little bit helps.
    yo! i like your business motto: "We are alway second in the industry, Customer alway come first" is it trademarked?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    Internet / Colorado
    Posts
    1,652
    Very cool! Hopefully they go pretty far, rackspace is an impressive story!
    Like passive recurring revenue you can retire on?
    You focus on building your brand, we handle all support, billing, and more.
    Pressed.net - Start your own Managed WordPress Hosting Company

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    London, UK
    Posts
    1,733
    The guy that started Fasthosts probably wins...

    A computer company well known for throwing the most lavish Christmas parties in Britain was sold yesterday, leaving the 26- year-old founder £46m richer.

    Fasthosts made headlines last year after an office bash that featured Jonathan Ross, the rock band the Darkness, free Cristal champagne and fire-jugglers. Yesterday it was bought by United Internet, a German internet service provider, for pounds £61.5m.

    Andrew Michael, who began the business from his bedroom as part of an A-level project at the age of 17, owned 75 per cent of the company.

    Mr Michael insisted yesterday that he has not yet calculated how much he is now worth, but conceded he has "more money than I know what to do with".
    Darren Lingham - UK Webhosting Ltd. - (0800) 024 2931
    Tsohost.co.uk - Quality UK Windows and Linux hosting since 2003
    UK WordPress Hosting - Fast, easy, cloud based WordPress Hosting

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    89
    THough it is not webhosting, I think youtube is also just another miracle in the IT industry.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    Location
    Chicago
    Posts
    1,134
    Yeah, midPhase started in May 2003--not six years. I'm not sure how that ended up
    in that but probably just a goof.

    Anyways, still cool to be nominated ;-]
    ---
    Dan Ushman
    Co-founder & CMO
    SingleHop, Inc.

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