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Summit Data Communications

Akron, Ohio

Chris Bolinger, Jim O'Riordan, Jarrod Rafferty, Ron Seide and Andy Winson, founders

Incubator: Akron Global Business Accelerator, Akron, Ohio

Revenues: $15.2 million (2010)

Employees: 23 full-time employees, 6 interns

www.summitdata.com

Summit Data Communications is the mobile in today’s mobile computers, medical devices and other business-critical mobile units. Summit’s embedded Wi-Fi solutions provide secure, reliable connections in the challenging environments in which these mobile devices operate, including factories, warehouses, ports, hospitals and retail stores. Summit is recognized internationally for its quality and service. “Several of the largest companies in the world specifically require their mobile device suppliers to integrate a Summit radio because of our unparalleled performance,” says Summit President Ron Seide.

Five former Cisco Systems employees formed Summit Data Communications in late 2005, and the firm entered the Akron Global Business Accelerator shortly thereafter. During its time in the incubator, Summit has grown considerably. In fact, the firm was named the fastest-growing computer hardware manufacturer in the Midwest by Inc. magazine in 2010 with a three-year revenue growth rate of 516 percent.  

Incubator's role: Seide credits the incubator for much of the company’s success.  “Mike LeHere, Terry Martell and the entire AGBA staff have provided support that helped Summit grow from a five-person start-up to a 30-person, largely export-oriented firm that generated $15 million in revenue in 2010,” Seide says.

That support continues to grow as AGBA helps Summit develop new relationships and identify market opportunities. “AGBA’s association with the Austen Bioinnovation Institute helped us access our next major market, the healthcare industry,” Seide says. “Through the institute, AGBA introduced Summit to a variety of medical technology consultants, hospitals, universities and healthcare professionals and is helping Summit conduct initial market research.”

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