Global Security Finance Interviews Spear Inc. – “The US Government Has Been Leaning on the Small Business Community”

May 8, 2013

The current US budgetary environment is pushing federal agencies to rely further on small and medium businesses (SMB), an opportunity Spear, Inc. is keen to take advantage of, according to the company’s CEO Richard Pineda and its COO Gino Antonelli. Both of them co-founded the federal IT solutions and management consulting provider just over a year ago.
“It’s a great time to be a small business in the federal market because it’s a very price sensitive area at the moment,” Pineda told Global Security Finance. “Smaller organizations are leaner and more flexible, qualities the government is increasingly relying on and seeking out, especially where IT and other business services are concerned.”
The Vienna, VA based company is indeed relying on its SMB “agility” coupled with “Fortune 50 pedigree” to pursue procurement opportunities across the full spectrum of government departments, including both Department of Defense and civilian agencies. The year-old organization currently has subcontract agreements on numerous IDIQ and direct contracts through its deep industry network and customer knowhow.
Antonelli explains that Spear is steering towards the current federal drive for more efficiency – in terms of cost and business processes – and towards the “top C-Level priorities,” both of which have driven the company to provide “classic” IT services (network and helpdesk activities, and information assurance, for example) as well as more recent enterprise solutions such as cloud, data analytics, cyber security, on top of program management consulting capabilities. He adds that the intelligence and healthcare sectors, especially, are attracting the company’s interest as they face some sector-specific challenges in terms of data and network security.
“We have agencies ask us questions ranging from how to make their IT infrastructure more efficient, to managing growing amounts of data and training staff in cyber security,” Pineda explains, adding that there are still a lot of opportunities out there because many agencies have not migrated to a cloud structure, for example.
He believes the company’s emphasis on people and relationships is also key to its differentiation. He is the former President of Dell Inc.’s (Nasdaq:DELL) Federal Services unit, while Antonelli was the Executive Vice President of Intelligent Decisions, Inc., a US IT systems integrator for federal government agencies.
“Our team has used the federal market ties we’ve accumulated throughout our career to build Spear. Our experience gives us unique insight into the federal marketplace, including its challenges,” Antonelli says.
As such, this approach has led the company to start seeking out strategic partnerships in the federal sector, to support its current growth trajectory. Spear recently appointed a new Senior Vice President of Civilian, as well as a Director of Corporate Development to support the advancement of industry penetration and partner relationships.
“We rely on organic growth as well as new business capture to support our growth trajectory,” stresses Pineda. “However, one area we will be aggressive in is intellectual property in strategic areas, such as data analytics and cyber security. In this perspective, we will consider M&A in the future, but only insofar as any target company adds new customers or complements what we do.”
Spear is currently seeing the benefits of possessing SMB flexibility, as Pineda says he expects the company to bring in by the end of the second quarter CY13, the same amount of revenue that it drew during the ten months it operated in all of 2012.
He concludes: “If Spear were a larger, $1billion+ business in the present budgetary context, I would not be so bullish. Small businesses are poised to grow at a faster year-on-year growth rate based on the government strategy.”

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