Sometimes Overnight Success Takes a Decade or Longer.
Sometimes slow and steady wins the race. Just ask these Inc. 500 companies.
Giovanni Donatelli owes a lot to Barack Obama and his signature health care law, the 2010 Affordable Care Act, which mandated that all health care and insurance institutions provide translations to patients with limited English proficiency.
Suddenly, the Language Group, the translation-services business he founded in 1999, hit a wellspring, landing Donatelli his first big health care provider in 2014.
“I didn’t sleep for 21 straight days,” says Donatelli, who emigrated to the U.S. from Italy at age 7 and worked a second job to pay the bills during his first eight years of his business.
Today, the Language Group–hitting No. 500 of this year’s Inc. 500–has 23 employees, and a network of 1,100 contracted translators and interpreters. Its annual revenue in 2017, $4.5 million, grew just over 1,000 percent since 2014. And Donatelli is feeling pretty vindicated. “I believed the Language Group did have a future but [at first] I couldn’t really map it out,” he says. “I had to trust my gut.”
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