Saturday, ServInt turned 18 years old. That’s a lifetime in this industry – basically the entire life of the commercial Internet. I am writing to specifically congratulate Reed Caldwell on the accomplishment of building an organization from scratch that now, if it were a person, would be considered an adult.
I wanted to write this article because I’ve been here since the very beginning, watching ServInt grow from an idea Reed had while in his college dorm room at the University of Richmond. I was also attending UR where I was one of his closest friends, and even then a close adviser and sounding board for his ideas, which at times sounded crazy to me. But sometimes crazy ideas work, and are what drive us forward!
Reed was passionate about the way the Internet was exploding back in 1995, and about giving people the tools to build their ideas on this new, exciting platform. He was so passionate that he decided he was going to lay it all on the line to start his idea for a company. Read more
Ladies and gents, today is ServInt’s Sweet Sixteen!
It’s amazing to think how far this company has come. We’ve been through a lot, and we’ve seen our industry — as well as the Internet as a whole — change dramatically over the past decade and a half.
In just 16 years, the Internet has become the default way to do business. Even so, explaining the concept in plain English can be difficult. The Internet is, in a lot of ways, an incredibly abstract idea. It is quite literally everywhere all the time; that’s a paradigm that can be tough to condense in a sentence or two.
Last week, the video embedded below made the rounds across the Internet. It reminded me of how hard it can be — collectively I mean — to wrap our heads around an idea as vast as the Internet.
When ServInt was founded in 1995, there were less than 18,000 dotcoms in the world.
That fact, according to an article on CNN.com yesterday, is pretty jarring when you think about it. It truly emphasizes just how much of a frontier the Internet was for entrepreneurs. How so many companies, in the shadow of the giants (at the time) at Netscape, AOL, and others, got started by refusing to believe that innovation was purely a numbers game.
Nearly everyday there are seismic shifts in how we do business online. While the Internet certainly shrunk our world by opening up new, relatively inexpensive lines of communication internationally, it arguably also did the opposite in many ways. The Internet expanded, exponentially, the size and scope of the planet from an intellectual and communicative standpoint. No longer were we limited by continents and language, we were free to do and say as we pleased in a new network of ideas. New markets sparked by young ambition sprang out of tiny packets of 1’s and 0’s traveling at the speed of light. Borders became more and more irrelevant and a new kind of global technologically-centered culture began to flourish.
Yesterday, the dotcom Top Level Domain turned 25 years old. ServInt also recently completed our 10,000th turn-up. These are two very different events with very different scopes, of course, but they’re noteworthy for the exact same reasons.
15 years ago, I founded ServInt.
The odds were very much against us at the outset. I was 19 and I didn’t have any connections to the industry, much less the capital that would be necessary to start a company of our scope today. What I lacked in funding, I made up for with sheer, unadulterated passion for building a rock solid business on the web. In my mind, the only things we needed to be successful were a coherent vision and geek cred, and ServInt would have both in spades.
From the beginning, the difference between ServInt and the competition has always been our level of accountability. We wanted businesses of all shapes and sizes to be able to trust us to ensure they stayed up and running. The things that many folks take for granted, such as 24/7 support, were things we had to develop from the ground up…and when I say ground up, I mean me waking up at 3 am to update someone’s server in the next room. Ah, simpler times indeed.
Today, we have staff all over the U.S. serving customers from all over the world. More than 30% of our customers are in Asia, and we continue to have a dominating presence in North America and Europe, we are a truly global company. From our Managed Services Team in Virginia, to our network engineering teams in Washington, D.C., Virginia, and California, all the way to our Enterprise Sales teams in Michigan, it shows just how far we’ve come from the early days in ServInt’s infancy.
We’re a healthier, smarter, and faster company now than we’ve ever been, and these last 15 years have been a blast.
This year, we have a lot of really exciting projects we’re working on. In the coming months, we’ll have new products competing in new markets, paving the way for a future that further enables businesses to grow, and keep growing, with ServInt.
Traditionally, a 15th anniversary is represented by a gift of crystal or a watch. Both are symbols of longevity, rigidity, strength, and transparency. Like a crystal, ServInt has a clear focus that has been shaped and refined by our experiences in this industry. Like a watch, we have stood the test of time, and our product has an elegant complexity shaped by a combination of open source expertise and the attention to detail only true craftsmen could supply.
I think that image is fitting, and I want to personally thank all of you for trusting us with your business. You are, and will continue to be, an integral part of our success.
Here’s to another 15 years.
Wow, I look great in that video thumbnail, kudos to YouTube for ensuring that folks question my state of consciousness. Anyway, we have some really exciting news to tell you, so without further ado:
In a connected world, we’re always striving to better capture the adventures that happen around us. At ServInt, we help connect businesses and clients every day, so it’s only fitting that we embrace a world of ubiquitous connectivity and change.
In honor of our upcoming 15 year anniversary, ServInt is giving one lucky winner a new, ServInt branded Flip Mino HD 120!
Anyone 18 or older can enter, so why wait?
There are two ways to enter the sweepstakes:
1. Through ServInt’s Facebook Page. Don’t forget to become a Fan of ServInt!
2. Through Twitter. Simply click here or click the big green button below! Follow ServInt, enter our contest, and retweet it to your friends in one fell swoop!
Good luck to all!