According to Barrett, Rothman had the fortitude to build his tech staff in-house. This not only allowed the company to evolve quickly, it also gave it some leverage — without a foreboding entity standing behind their shoulders as they worked, the small team was able to circumvent lengthy proposal times, avoid expensive outsourcing, revise glitches immediately, and build on SMS' proprietary technology as they saw fit.

Today, the small team has grown to more than 200 employees.

“It’s a very entrepreneurial company,” says Barrett, adding that ideas flow from all levels of the company. “We can change on a dime.”

Though SMS started with an operational platform for janitorial services, early on the company had the ingenuity to add window washing, HVAC,
landscaping and snow removal services — until nearly all the bases within facility management were covered.

SMS built out their network by partnering with contractors, known as affiliate partners, across the region and beyond.

These groups utilize SMS technology services, free of charge, to execute the work, invoice the customer and receive payments. Currently, SMS affiliates service more than 50,000 locations.

“Integrated facilities management is a huge market, about $527 billion globally,” Rothman says. “We’re able to help thousands of small businesses participate in the market. They use our software, do the work and get a check every month.”


Venture Capitalists, Investors Eye SMS' Proprietary Technology

Evidently, that was enough for the company to attract users and high-level investors to the firm. Currently, three major groups: The Pritzger Group/New World Ventures, Compass Group/Eurest Services, and the Huizenga Group serve as equity partners. And SMS advisors are no small apples either. Former executives from Wal-Mart, Home Depot, The Kellogg Company, Dollar General, even a former presidential Chief of Staff, are all on board. 

Needless to say, the company has been a cash cow, profitable from inception and growing year-over-year, though the firm declines to give specific revenue numbers. (“It’s well-funded,” Barrett says humbly.) 

A lot of that has to do with SMS' proprietary technology, but the other half, according to Barrett, comes down to the talent that SMS has been able to harness through their strategic, institutional and equity partnerships.

“These guys don’t show up, unless the other guys are here,” he jokes.

As Barrett watched the company come into fruition he became increasingly drawn to the innovative start-up. 

“I became convinced that this was something to be involved in,” he says. “It was clear it was going to work. I really felt then — and do now — that we had the chance to revolutionize facility services.”

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