Ten IT companies amongst Pakistan Fast Growth 25
The names of the winners of the Pakistan Fast Growth 25, a ranking of fast growth entrepreneurial companies, was announced today. The Pakistan Fast Growth 25 is a program of the AllWorld Network in partnership with Harvard Business School Professor Michael Porter and was launched in collaboration with JS Bank Limited. Joining the Pakistan 25 were Nominating Partners P@SHA, FPCCI, Rawalpindi Chamber of Commerce & Industry, TiE, and Knowledge Partner Mishal (Pvt.) Ltd. The Pakistan Fast Growth 25 companies have grown an average of 81% a year for the past three years. They paint Pakistan in a new light, suggesting that Pakistan is a strong country for entrepreneurship, said the Press Release.
What is even more interesting to note is that as a group, the Pakistan 25 broke AllWorld records for high growth of 8 countries in the Middle East, Africa and South Asia. The companies who made the Pakistan 25 posted a 81% annual growth rate between 2007 and 2009 with an average size of 400 employees per company, and since inception they have created 12,000 jobs. On average the entrepreneurs are 41 years old, with a number having founded other successful companies. Leading the Pakistan 25 growth rankings are companies in High-Tech and Telecommunications, and Agriculture and Textiles. Many of these rising Pakistan 25 companies are not just serving local markets, but are competing globally.
Malik Ahmad Jalal, AllWorld’s Director of the Pakistan 25 said in a statement that “Pakistani entrepreneurs have flourished in spite of some of the most restricting economic and security environments in the world. These dynamic men and women are a great resource and the best bet for Pakistan’s future. US Ambassador Cameron Munter will host the Awards Celebration for the winners at his residence on 24 January 2011 which will also be graced by Finance Minister Abdul Hafeez Shaikh and other VIPs.
Around 100 companies competed for a spot on the Pakistan 25. Only the fastest growing private companies make the list, and each company is credentialed by AllWorld based on strenuous international standards. Of the 30 companies that made the Pakistan 25, Lahore had the most number with 12 winners and Karachi came in a close second with 10 winners.
Interesting to note is that amongst the top 25, the top 10 were IT companies. So who says that the IT sector is not growing and not contributing to job creation. These companies have proven all nay-sayers wrong. Well done guys! We are extremely proud of you.
Jamal Khan, CEO of Arpatech that ranked third on this list says that his strategy was to develop a small number of anchor relationships and grow with those firms. I am an optimist, he said, about Pakistan’s potential and its people. Pakistan is a compelling market with a tremendous resource pool of talented engineers and entrepreneurs. Arpatech develops innovative solutions for complex problems, and they do this by aligning themselves closely with their clients. Focusing on deep relationships with a select number of customers is often counter-intuitive to a fast-growth business model, but this was key to gaining and international clients post 9-11 and sustaining those relationships in spite of turbulence in Pakistan. Arpatech looks to grow by focusing on incubating ideas and taking those to market. They are also looking at setting up a second office in Malaysia or the Middle East.
At Number 5 is TradeKey.com which is the world’s fastest growing online trading platform. It connects over 4.9 million importers, exporters and traders in more than 240 countries including USA, UK, China, Germany, France, India, Pakistan and the Middle East. Aiming to make “doing business easier”, TradeKey.com was founded in 2005 and within a short span of just over 4 years it is now ranked among the top 5 online B2B marketplaces of the world. Junaid Mansoor, the CEO of TradeKey says that his vision for the next 5 years is to make TradeKey a name that would be trustworthy and well known to Worldwide SMEs and will become a core part of their business process. TradeKey will reach out to 20,000 different cities of the World by forming partnerships with local entrepreneurs, and provide a kick-start environment to nurture entrepreneurship.
At Number 6 is Sofizar, a B2C Internet Marketing company with development and operations based out of Lahore, PK. Sofizar is aggressively pursuing a very rapid growth path with its experienced management, excellent team and a great track record since its inception in April, 2004. While Sofizar has worked with premier clients like government agencies and large multinationals, for exporting its technologies, their focus has been marketing directly to consumers. After clocking high growth rates over the past 3 years, Sofizar has annual sales of over $20 Million in 2009 through its Live Events Vertical Search Engine as well as its Events Tickets Business. Sofizar continues to be profitable by maintaining healthy margins as well as by rapidly growing its top line revenues.
Zafar Khan, CEO of Sofizar, says that his vision is that Sofizar will be the global leader in Search Engine based E-commerce and Lead Generation and they intend to be Pakistan’s first internet marketing billion dollar capitalization company. If anyone can do it, this man can!
AllWorld was co-founded by Deirdre Coyle, Anne Habiby and Porter. Professor Porter was described by the Times of London as the world’s “most influential management guru” and is widely regarded at the foremost authority on company and country competitiveness. “The Pakistan 25 companies, led by dynamic men and women, represent the leading edge of a new approach to Pakistan’s competitiveness” says Porter.
AllWorld is also launching the Pakistan 100, and companies are invited to apply at AllWorldLive.com at the Asia 500 section. AllWorld aims to advance ALL the growth entrepreneurs of the emerging world, and building the largest entrepreneurship information system in the world. For more information on the Pakistan 25 visit www.allworldlive.com.