The Case Western Reserve University-based awards include companies in a variety of sectors, including consulting, financial services, medical devices, real estate and digital media

Roger Zona

Roger Zona, founder of TPI Efficiency

Cleveland-based budget-consulting firm TPI Efficiency—with sales growth topping 3,000 percent in the past five years—is the winner of the 2018 Weatherhead 100, honoring the fastest-growing companies headquartered in Northeast Ohio.

TPI Efficiency (short for Total Procurement Intelligence) manages budgets by reducing energy, utility and other overhead expenses. Since its 2009 founding, the firm has grown to 45 employees and recently opened satellite offices in Columbus and Baltimore and plans additional locations along the East Coast.

The annual awards, given for the past 31 years, are administered by the Weatherhead School of Management at Case Western Reserve University. Winners were announced at a black-tie event Nov. 29 at the Hilton Cleveland Downtown hosted by Tom Hamilton, the play-by-play announcer for the Cleveland Indians.

In addition to the overall list, two additional categories recognize the fastest-growing companies with at least $100 million in annual sales (Centurions) and smaller firms with less than $5 million in yearly sales (Upstarts). This year’s list includes 31 first-time winners.

logo for 2018 Weatherhead 100“No matter their size, companies growing this fast are finding problems in need of new, better or cheaper solutions—often driven by technology,” said Scott Shane, the A. Malachi Mixon III Professor of Entrepreneurial Studies at Case Western Reserve. “They’re also managing the challenges of growth, including attracting new customers while keeping existing clients satisfied.”

The 2018 Weatherhead 100 list is notable for the range of sectors represented in Northeast Ohio’s continually diversifying economy, said Shane, a phenomenon highlighted especially by firms increasingly turning to software-based services and products.

“Efficiencies created by new technologies—including software—have the potential to create high-margin solutions that can particularly lucrative,” he said. “Companies can then use this profitability to fuel further growth.”

Centurions and Upstarts

Providence Healthcare

2018 Centurion winners, Providence Healthcare Management

This year’s top Centurion award was taken by Providence Healthcare Management, which provides consulting services to more than 30 facilities in the Midwest offering assisted and independent living. The decade-old, Pepper Pike-based company has seen 700 percent sales growth in the last five years.

The 2018 Upstart winner is Chardon-based telos institute, offering coaching and consulting on leadership transitions and corporate culture. The public company has grown to 10 full-time employees and around 40 independent contractors since its founding in 2006, and demonstrated a nearly 700 percent increase in sales in the last five years.

How to win

telos institute

Rick and Amy Simmons, founders of telos institute

To qualify, participants must submit certain financial records, be based in Northeast Ohio and have grown sales to $1 million or more in the past five years. Centurions must show net sales of $100 million-plus in the last year, and Upstarts have less than $5 million in net annual sales and/or fewer than 15 employees.

Inaugural awardees of the Weatherhead 100—established in 1988—that have cemented places in the regional and national economy include Progressive Insurance, Parker-Hannifin and Ohio Business Machines.

2018 Weatherhead 100 companies, by the numbers

Decade Established

  • 1800s: 2
  • 1930s-1970s: 7
  • 1980s: 15
  • 1990s: 21
  • 2000s: 50
  • 2010s: 5

Winners by County

  • Cuyahoga: 74
  • Summit: 8
  • Lake: 4
  • Lorain, Stark, Geauga, Ashtabula: 2
  • Medina, Wayne, Portage. Erie, Mahoning, Tuscarawas: 1

Number of Employees

  • 5-25: 22
  • 26-50: 40
  • 51-100: 22
  • 101-150: 6
  • 151-200: 5
  • 201-300: 4
  • 300+: 1

The oldest company on this year’s list, Canfield, Ohio-based Farmers National Banc Corp., was founded in 1887 and also has the most employees, with 443.

Five-Year Growth Rates

  • 50-99%: 32
  • 100- 249%: 46
  • 250- 499%: 14
  • 500- 749%: 2
  • 750- 999%: 2
  • 1,000- 1,999%: 3
  • 2,000%+: 1

Years on the Weatherhead 100

  • First-time winners: 31
  • 2 years: 16
  • 3 years: 6
  • 4 years: 13
  • 5 years: 8
  • 6 years: 9
  • 7 years: 5
  • 8 years: 5
  • 9 years: 1
  • 10 years: 3
  • 11 years: 1
  • 12 years: 1
  • 13-plus years: 1

Market Sectors of Winning Companies

  • Financial & Professional Services: 27
  • Architecture/Building/Construction: 16
  • Manufacturing & Distribution: 14
  • IT Products and Services: 13
  • Real Estate: 7
  • Healthcare Services & Manufacturing: 5
  • Consumer Products: 5
  • Advertising/PR/Marketing: 4
  • Consulting: 4
  • Environmental: 3
  • Automotive/Transportation: 2

Photos courtesy of Crain’s Cleveland Business


For more information, contact Daniel Robison at daniel.robison@case.edu.