Atlantic.Net Blog

SaaS, Cloud, or Any Business – When Profitability Matters!

Hitesh Jethva
by Atlantic.Net (228 posts) under VPS Hosting
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Atlantic.Net was founded in 1994 with no Venture Capital backing or Wall Street funding. 25 years ago, what mattered most to our founders was how to grow the business organically and simultaneously develop profitability, and always offer the latest technology to our wonderful customers.

This approach still holds true today, now that Atlantic.Net has become a leading global cloud provider with clients in hundreds of countries, being served from seven global data centers, we will always remember our humble beginnings back in 1994 as an internet service provider.

Running a profitable business with little to no debt, staying ahead of the technology curve, and most importantly, being able to bill our customers accurately are some of the top reasons behind our continued success. Credit goes to Marty Puranik, our CEO, who has consistently shown real strength to make his vision become true.

Marty dropped out of the University of Florida to start his own internet company in neighboring Gainesville, Florida. The University was at that time proactively blocking student access to the internet from their halls of residence. It might seem inconceivable that today a University would have this kind of stance towards Internet access.

However, this decision kickstarted Marty on his journey to becoming a successful dot-com entrepreneur, rapidly building an Internet Service Provider company with 2000 customers and eight employees in the first 12 months. ICC Computers, as it was known at the time, launched commercial internet services in 1995, and had expanded into Tampa and Orlando before the end of 1996.

The business continued to grow at pace, introducing services into Mississippi, Louisiana, Georgia, and Alabama before going national in 2000 with dial-up and DSL services. At one point, Atlantic.Net was the largest independent internet service provider in the South East and most of the national brands were providing access to their clients by using the Atlantic.Net network.

This all took place during the height of the Dot-Com bubble, global investors were lavishly keen to spend on technology companies. Between 1995 and 2000, the Nasdaq stock market index rose by 400%. Sadly, when the bubble started to burst between 2000-2001, many dotcom businesses went under.

Investors became extremely cautious, trust in the industry was waning after Microsoft was found guilty in a landmark antitrust case in 2001, and the tragic events of 9/11 accelerated the rapid decline. Even Atlantic.Net, as a privately owned company, was not immune to the crisis. Consumer confidence was at an all-time low, but Marty never gave up and showed strength and persistence.

Atlantic.Net survived the DotCom crash thanks to some tough decision making, Marty took a major pay cut and he made many other sacrifices. Today, COVID-19 is threatening an even bigger economic downturn, but this time it is different;

Even though our economy is facing a difficult future, a bubble bigger than Dot-Com, Atlantic.Net is in a unique position to grow stronger, as we realize the digital transformation goals of our clients. This is all because of Marty’s leadership and vision.

From its inception in 1994 until 2002, Atlantic.Net became one of Florida’s largest privately-owned Internet Service Providers, providing Internet access to consumers in cities and small towns throughout Florida and the southeastern United States.  Atlantic.Net acquired 16 Internet companies in those nine years, doubling and tripling revenues annually.

As legislation made it more difficult for a small business like Atlantic.Net to exist as an ISP, from 2002 Atlantic.Net entered the Data Center Services business and we have never looked back.

“Weathering the Storm”

Atlantic.Net knows how to weather a storm.  For 25 years the company has remained profitable despite the dot.com bust, a strategic redirection, and the current economic downturn caused by COVID-19.

How have we achieved this?  By helping local, regional and global businesses remain up and running through computer outages, failed Internet connections, and, well, bad weather. The core business principals that helped to build the business are still incredibly important today.

Customer satisfaction, security, and technical mastery are some of the foundations that the business was built upon, and today these foundations keep the business driving forward and capable of absorbing the next misfortune to face the industry.

Business Accomplishments

In addition to growing organically, Atlantic.Net acquired 16 Internet companies from 1994-2002, doubling, and tripling revenues annually.  In 1998 Atlantic.Net was named in the Florida Council of 100, a non-profit organization of Florida business leaders that recognizes the state’s fastest-growing private companies.

Between 1998 and 2002, Atlantic.Net made the Inc 500 list for four consecutive years. This was an incredible achievement to be named in the top 500 US privately-held businesses. During the past 20 years, fewer than 6 percent of the winners have been named to the list three times. Atlantic.Net is one of only 31 Florida-based companies to make the Inc 500 and was the state’s only Internet service provider to be honored.

The business continues to grow even during the current economic down-turn and biggest pandemic in a century, and this is thanks to our solid partnership with Ubersmith. One thing we have always understood since the business was founded is that you can only grow if you can bill your customers accurately and efficiently.

Our confidence in Ubersmith has been unwavering in the 25 years we have been in business. They are champions at what they do, and we are delighted to have partnered up with them to help us grow, and most importantly handle our complex billing transactions between hundreds of countries with a growing diverse set of services and solutions.

More recently, Atlantic.Net won two awards at the 2020 Stevies, we were awarded the Gold Stevie Winner for Healthcare Technology and the Silver Stevie Winner for Cloud Platform.  Our world-class HIPAA compliant hosting solutions and VPS Cloud Hosting Platforms won us these awards. Ubersmith billings underpin these platforms, another example of our great partnership.

Atlantic.Net was recognized as a leading cloud services provider in Gartner’s 2019 Market Guide for Cloud Service Providers to Healthcare Delivery Organizations, and this was for the second time! the first time was in 2017. Our inclusion inside a highly recognized, leading research and advisory company publication was down to an exceptional job done by our technical teams.

Our other reward highlights include being in the CRN MSP Top 500 of 2015 and then making it into the CRN Tech Elite Top 250 in 2019. The Medtech Breakthrough award wins in 2018 and 2019 are also treasured by the team as it validates our Medical IoT platforms.

Why Choose Atlantic.Net?

Today, Atlantic.Net is a leading managed services provider, with a strong presence in cloud compliance, and dedicated hosting. From meeting the strictest security, privacy, and compliance requirements to ensuring a robust and scalable hosting environment, our hosting solutions are designed to help bring focus to your core business and applications.

Our Compliance Hosting solutions are a perfect fit for financial services and healthcare organizations that require the most robust security levels for their data. Certified and audited by third party independent auditors, Atlantic.Net Compliance Hosting Solutions fulfill HIPAA, HITECH, PCI, or SOC requirements.

Why Choose Ubersmith?

Accurate billing is a cornerstone of building a successful data center services business. It might sound simple to just bill your customer, but in reality, it is an extremely complex task to undertake, especially for a company like Atlantic.Net who manages ten of thousands of customers globally.

What makes cloud computing so popular is the flexibility of costs, Ubersmith empowers Atlantic.Net to bill accurately for the compute, network, and storage usage of our customers. Ubersmith creates fast, accurate, and automated billing down at a finite level. It is easy to apply our pay-as-you-go model costings, or automatically assign one or three-year discount offerings.

Our customers benefit because they can predict the recurring billing costs and can pay with a large number of payment options. We highly recommend Ubersmith and no matter what business you are running, make sure you are billing your customers!

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