The Inc. 5000 is a list of the fastest-growing private companies in the United States. It recognizes businesses that are propelling the economy forward by creating jobs and sparking innovation. And in 2018, Killer Infographics is proud to have made the list for the third year in a row.

The top company on the 2018 Inc. 5000 list, SwanLeap, grew by 75,661% in just three years’ time. That’s an incredible feat, and some pretty humbling company to keep. So to give a little context on what being an Inc. 5000 company means, and to recognize our fellow honorees, we’d like to share a little more insight on what the Inc. 5000 is all about.

What Does It Mean to Be on the Inc. 5000?

First of all, what does the Inc. 5000 measure? It specifically looks at a company’s revenue growth over a three-year period. The 2018 rankings, then, are based on how much the listed companies grew their revenue between 2013 and 2016.

To qualify, a company must be independent and privately owned. It must also be based in the United States, and there are certain revenue thresholds it needs to meet.

The Role of High-Growth Firms

Inc. reports that companies listed on the Inc. 5000 generated 619,631 jobs between 2013 and 2016. The Brookings Institution breaks down these numbers a little more: the median three-year employment growth per company in 2017 was 35%.

These seem like stunning figures, but equally as stunning is just how fast some of these companies are growing — sixfold over a three-year period on average. And as it turns out, high-growth companies such as those listed on the Inc. 5000 have a huge role to play in the overall economic health of the country. The Bureau of Labor Statistics has found that, between the mid-1990s and the late 2000s, just 2.4% of companies accounted for 40% of the nation’s new jobs.

Industries Making the Cut

Brookings reports that the top five industries making the list between 2011 and 2017 were: Inc 5000 top industries

IT, then, is far and away the best performer, and that makes a great deal of sense given the last decade. Sectors that may be large but are potentially more established, such as insurance and telecommunications, fall lower in the rankings.

How Killer Compares

The average business age on the Inc. 5000 is eight years. Killer, founded in 2010, falls right inside that margin this year, but we were a relatively young company when we first made the list in 2016.

Killer is also much smaller than the average company, which has $37 million in revenue and 199 employees. Today, we have just 24 employees including our CEO, Amy Balliett — and we have the full intention of staying small, as we believe creative teams are more effective that way.

Just 1 in 4 Inc. 5000 companies have made the list three times, so we’re celebrating big-time in the Killer office this week. We want to take this opportunity to thank all our clients and partners for making this sustained growth possible — and here’s to another great year!

Erin McCoy

Author Erin McCoy

Erin McCoy is director of content marketing and public relations at Killer Visual Strategies. She earned her BA in Spanish with minors in French and Russian, and holds 2 master’s degrees from the University of Washington: an MFA in creative writing and an MA in Spanish literature. She has won nearly 2 dozen awards in photojournalism, and has dedicated those skills to boosting Killer’s brand recognition and thought leadership in visual communication. Since Erin took on her marketing/PR role, Killer has been named a member of the Inc. 5000 for 4 years in a row; has been featured in such publications as Inc., Forbes, Mashable, and the Huffington Post; and has been invited to present at such conferences as SXSW and SMX Advanced.

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