Springfield businessman Doug Pitt calls his Pitt Technology Group LLC venture a “26-year-old, brand-new company.”
The latest company is being formed with the repurchase of the Springfield assets from St. Charles-based partner TSI Global Cos. LLC.
Four years ago, Pitt sold his remaining stake in ServiceWorld Computer Center, which he founded in 1991, to TSI Global, and the Springfield office operated under the TSI Technology Solutions LLC name.
On Oct. 10, Pitt signed the papers to buy back TSI’s Springfield assets for undisclosed terms.
“I get my baby back,” he said, noting the deal is scheduled to close Nov. 1, creating Pitt Technology Group in the process. “We’re going to go back to basics.”
Pitt said Kevin Waterland – one of his longtime employees and a co-owner with him in internet infrastructure contractor SyndeoSolutions LLC – came to him with the idea to buy back the local operations and expand in scope.
Waterland will serve as general manager and an equity owner for umbrella company Pitt Technology Group, which comprises SyndeoSolutions, information technology firm NexioTechnologies LLC and low-voltage cabling unit Lovo Integrations.
Waterland, who worked as director of technology services for TSI’s Springfield office, said SyndeoSolutions had become one of TSI’s largest local clients. He said 90 percent of SyndeoSolutions’ contracted labor was hired from TSI.
“It made sense to take that back under one roof,” he said.
While TSI wasn’t seeking to let go of the branch operations, TSI Chief Operating Officer Bill Mueller said the firm entertained the proposal because it opens up other internal reinvestments and continues subcontractor and product relationships in Springfield.
“What it allows us to do is to take our time, money and resources that were being applied to the Springfield branch and apply them to other locations that we’re expanding to,” Mueller said, pointing to the cities of Denver and Charlotte, North Carolina, and operations in Connecticut and Texas. “In those markets, we’re chasing the larger opportunities.”
TSI Global is a roughly $31 million company, Mueller said, adding the company doesn’t keep track of each branch’s sales.
Pitt also will continue working for TSI in business development for select corporate accounts.
“We’ve created a strategic account focus, and he’ll be part of that,” Mueller said.
For Pitt Technology Group, on top of the IT services provided by NexioTechnologies, SyndeoSolutions connects apartment owners, such as The Wooten Co., with internet service providers, and builds infrastructure for new and old properties. Lovo Integrations, which along with the IT unit previously was part of TSI Technology Solutions in Springfield, provides post-construction cabling for buildings, including indoor and outdoor fiber installations, and audio-video systems, Waterland said.
At the local office, 1409 W. Sunshine St., a showroom full of boxes forecasts a planned move.
Pitt maintained ownership of the building after ServiceWorld’s sale, but with the formation of Pitt Technology Group, he said the companies need more space.
“We don’t really need the retail front anymore,” he said, noting a decision on a new location likely would be made in the next 30 days.
Pitt said the 32 Springfield employees will focus on a personal approach rather than the remote service he said is too common in the IT industry.
“The reality is, people need to see their engineer. We’re going to let everybody else try to do it from afar,” he said. “I know the service business extremely well. I know what people need and want.
“We’re going to give it to them.”
Another recent ServiceWorld sale, prior to the TSI relationship, was in 2008. Pitt sold a controlling interest in ServiceWorld to Miami Nation Enterprises, the business arm of the Oklahoma-based Native American tribe. Then in 2013, Pitt said Miami Nation bought the remaining 25 percent of ServiceWorld he still owned. After Miami Nation purchased a majority stake in TSI that same year, the tribe merged ServiceWorld into TSI.
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