A look at the people behind the numbers in area business:
CRAIG SCHMIDTKE VIRTEVA
Title: Executive vice president of sales, marketing and product strategy
Craig Schmidtke is working to expand business locally and in other markets as executive vice president of sales, marketing and product strategy at Virteva, a Golden Valley-based information technology consulting and managed services company.
Virteva, marking a decade in business this month, has enjoyed strong revenue growth since it added managed services to its consulting business in 2010, Schmidtke said.
He credited Jamey Anderson, Virteva's executive vice president of delivery and operations, with helping to develop the new business model, adopted soon after Schmidtke's arrival five years ago.
Revenue has grown 40 percent yearly since the change, Schmidtke said. Virteva employs 105 people and could add 20 to 30 more this year.
"As we became managed service providers and were serving the mid- to small-enterprise space, we found that that market is very underserved," Schmidtke said. "We've had a ton of success in the areas of end-user computing, things like service desk or help desk and managing the technology [computers and mobile devices] on behalf of clients."
Virteva is focusing on growing markets outside the Twin Cities while still managing those services from its operations center here, which offers 24/7 help desk services, Schmidtke said. The company has landed deals in Denver, Dallas and Southern California.
Schmidtke has a business management degree from the University of Minnesota's Carlson School of Management.
Q: What appealed to you about the opportunity to join Virteva?
A: My history is in helping companies, especially companies in the IT space, to build a business model that maximizes their potential for growth. All the ingredients were there at Virteva. … We felt this was a great opportunity to build more of a scalable business model.
Q: How does Virteva win business in new markets where it isn't known?
A: You have to focus on the merits of what you do and have that be the primary driver to instill credibility. It's all about creating credibility by having great referenced accounts and a great way to explain what you do and the thought leadership you do.
Q: How do you explain what Virteva does in those instances?
A: The thing that makes us different is that we put ourselves in the seat right next to the employee and view the world from their perspective as to how to make their job more effective and more efficient. Most other providers put themselves in the computer room and view the world from there.