Verity Commercial, a Reston-based company, was recognized by Inc. magazine as one of the fastest growing private companies in the country for the third time in four years.
The company, which is a real estate advisory and investment firm, was listed in the magazine’s Inc. 5000 list.
“Making our 3rd appearance on the most prestigious ranking for the nation’s fastest-growing businesses is incredible,” says Herm Diebler co-Founder of Verity. “Repeated success means we’re doing something right and our clients are experiencing long-term success using Verity’s approach. We wouldn’t be here without them.”
Verity was also given the 2019 ACE Business of the Year award by the Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce. It was established in 2010.
The Inc. 500 list ranks businesses based on percentage revenue growth when comparing 2015 and 2018. Only companies that are U.S.-based, privately held, for profit and independent are considered for the list.
Photo via Google Maps
Locals looking to diversity their workout options will soon be able to do so at Plaza America, which welcomes a new fitness business this month.
UFC Gym plans to open on August 19 at 11710 Plaza America Drive, Suite 40, a company representative told Reston Now.
The newest location in Reston will offer a mix of mixed martial arts, Brazilian jiu-jitsu and boxing glasses for individuals and groups.
UFC Gym is also located at Woodland Park Crossing at 12971 Highland Crossing Drive, Suite 6.
ElectrifyAmerica Helps Create Robotic Charging Stations — The Volkswagen subsidiary, which is based in Reston, is helping jumpstart a pilot program to create robotic charging stations for self-driving vehicles. The pilot will be based in San Francisco. [CNBC]
Reston Native Creates Denim Apparel for College Football — Caroline DeMarco, 18, of Reston, hand paints designs on denim jackets and creates tailgate staples for cooler months. Her side business took off on Instagram. [Northern Virginia Magazine]
Take a Break Concert Series Tonight — Enjoy “Uptown Vocal Jazz Quartet” at Lake Anne Plaza from 7-9 p.m. The concert is free and open for all ages. [Reston Community Center]
Photo via vantagehill/Flickr
Emergency Alert System Test Today — “FEMA, in coordination with the Federal Communications Commission, reminds the public that it will conduct a nationwide test of the Emergency Alert System (EAS) on Wednesday, Aug. 7, 2019. The nationwide test message will be sent to radio and television stations beginning at 2:20 p.m. EDT… This is solely a test of alerting on radio and television.” [Federal Communications Commission]
Reston Lending Firm Raises Millions in Debt Funding — “Small business lending platform StreetShares has raised nearly $30 million in fresh debt funding, according to a Securities and Exchange Commission filing Monday.” [Washington Business Journal]
A Look Back at Herndon’s History — Herndon Patch’s regular “Remembering Herndon’s History” column delves into the Caywood Family. “Benjamin and Philena Caywood were prominent Herndon citizens who settled here before Herndon became an incorporated town, leaving a long Herndon legacy.” [Herndon Patch]
Photo via @vantagehill/Flickr
Microsoft Corp. is on the hunt for up to 300,000 square feet of office space in Northern Virginia, which could require the company to consolidate offices from two other locations.
The Washington Business Journal reports that the company is working with commercial real estate services firm JLL to find prospects across Northern Virginia. Properties in Reston — including Comstock’s Loudoun and Reston Station projects, Brookfield’s Halley Rise, and Boston Properties’ Reston Gateway.
Currently, Microsoft leases 275,000 square feet at Reston Town Center.
Here’s more from the report:
The search appears to separate from the 332-acre site Microsoft acquired last year in Leesburg for $73 million. The company hasn’t filed development plans for that site yet, but as the WBJ reported in May, the company may have acquired the land at least in part to advance its effort to secure a pair of multi-billion-dollar government contracts. That makes the Leesburg land a more likely play for data center development to service the government cloud computing contracts than for office space of the sort it has at Reston Town Center.
Moving to one of those other development sites might better position Microsoft to bring all of its local employees under one roof.
WBJ also reports that Facebook is also scouting for space in Reston after the social media giant scratched Tysons off its list.
Meanwhile, Google is expected to begin moving its current employee based into Reston Station’s signature office building this summer.
Two Reston-based companies have secured a $750,000 federal grant to lead the Northern Virginia Smart City Initiative, which aims to bring government, private and nonprofit partners to advance the area’s smart city technology innovation cluster.
Smart City Works, a Reston-based nonprofit business accelerator, and Refraction, a co-working innovation hub that supports startups and high-growth companies, will advance the initiative in order to improve the livability and resilience of cities.
The U.S. Economic Development Administration awarded grants to 26 application from a pool of 183 submission. The Reston companies received the maximum amount of available funding.
Here’s more from the EDA on the initiative:
With the i6 Challenge grant, the Initiative will: 1) accelerate the development and lower the risk profile of companies seeking to provide innovative solutions to infrastructure challenges; 2) grow the number of startups and highly skilled tech talent in the region; (3) accelerate the commercialization of innovative products and 4) strengthen the regional smart city cluster supporting innovation, entrepreneurship, and commercialization.
Over the three-year grant period, the Northern Virginia Smart Region Initiative will create a stronger innovation cluster that will attract talent and capital to the region, stimulate economic development that benefits the entire community, and help to solve the region’s infrastructure challenges.
More than 45 companies are expected to graduate from the accelerator program, which could launch more than 30 new smart city products. The initiative is expected to generate 90 new jobs.
Photo via U.S. Department of Commerce
The Harry Potter-inspired Offices of Reston-based Macedon Technologies — The company, which accelerates digital transformation for clients by using technology and software consultants, has been repeatedly listed as one of the best places to work. Its new 25,000-square-foot office has a Harry Potter theme. [Fairfax County Economic Development Authority]
Reston Association Board of Directors to Discuss Boats and Docks — The board meets tonight at 6:30 p.m. to discuss changes to its lake and boat resolutions and early thoughts on the budget. RA CEO Hank Lynch will also offer an update on RA’s strategic plan. [Reston Association]
Take a Break Concert is Tonight — Enjoy Tower House Band and dance music for all ages at Lake Anne Plaza from 7-9 p.m. today. [Reston Community Center]
Photo submitted by Christian Bolus
“Made in Reston” is a bi-weekly series that offers readers a glimpse of what is happening behind the closed doors of offices in the Reston area. As more office buildings scrape the skies, Reston Now chats with company officials at startups and up-and-coming businesses to capture the local business community scene.
A little over a year since it opened its first charging station, Electrify America is now on a mission to roll out the country’s fastest-growing network of zero-emission car chargers.
The Reston-based company hopes to fuel zero-emission vehicle adoption nationwide by deploying a network of highway chargers that are “convenient, ultra-fast and reliable,” per Company spokesman Mike Moran.
Part of the solution is to make charging for EV drivers as easy as possible, while also educating the general public about zero-emissions vehicles. Earlier this year, Electrify America launched a mobile app to allow EV drivers to “manage their entire charging experience on their mobile phone” — from finding a charger to tracking a charging session.
The company also plans to expand its partnership with Walmart by bringing dozens of charges in major urban areas at Walmart locations. So far, it has more than 120 charging stations at Walmart stores in 34 states. Other companies like EVgo and ChargePoint are also attempting to challenge Tesla’s hold over its fast-charger network, which has more than 11,200 superchargers around the world.
Electrify America executives are also exploring new partnerships with the EV charging company on roaming charging agreements with the company’s networks. Recently, the company announced it will work with Harley-Davidson to provide honors of a new all-electric motorcycle — the LiveWire — with complimentary charging over two years.
The push to grow its charger network and expand into motorcycles comes in the the wake of Volkswagen’s fuel emissions scandal, which led the automaker to pour $2 billion from its 2016 settlement into Electrify America.
Electrify America is a subsidiary of Volkswagen and first opened in an unassuming office complex on 2003 Edmund Halley Drive two years ago. As part of the Volkswagen settlement — which rocked the automaker industry and opened the door for other investigations into diesel emissions scandals — Electrify America now operates as an independent entity.
Moran says the company’s placement in the technology corridor of Reston now provides Electrify America with unique access to innovation partners in the state and across the country.
As more EV vehicles come online, company officials are confident that demand for EV vehicles will continue over the next five years, maintaining Electrify America’s relevance and the inspiration behind its name.
One way it’s hoping to stay relevant is by bringing EV vehicles mainstream through emojis.
The company submitted a formal proposal to the Unicode Consortium — the government body for emoji creation — to create the first-ever “EV with charger” emoji. Emojis, according to the company, should be “representative of today’s world” — whether it’s using the proposed emoji or the zero-emissions vehicle.
Photo via Electrify America
New Pop-Ups at Reston Farmers Market — The market, which is held on Wednesdays between 3-7 p.m. through Nov. 27, will feature Bon Becca and It’s Baking Day, two pop-up businesses. Mike Henry will also join the market to play some tunes. The market takes place at St. John Neumann Church. [Reston Farmers Market]
Energy Surge Causes Minor Fire — Local fire and rescue crews put out a small building fire at the 1800 block of Samuel Morse Drive. No injuries were reported. Lightning reportedly struck a power transformer next to the building, leading to an energy surge. [Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department]
Fractal Industries Breaks New Ground — “A whole new ballgame is beginning for Reston-based Fractal Industries. The analytics and insurance software provider today announced it closed its Series A funding round totaling $78.6 million, led by Cannae Holdings and Motive Partners. Coinciding with the fresh round, the company changed its name to QOMPLX. The tech firm will use the capital to expand its headcount – currently at about 100 – and accelerate growth.” [American Inno]
Photo submitted by Christian Bolus
OS International Expands — The Reston-based company acquired Vykin Corporation, which specializes in communications, intelligence, and IT support to the intelligence community. The move is the company’s fourth acquisition in the past four years. [ExecutiveBiz]
LeaseAccelerator Acquires Australian Company — The Reston-based developer of enterprise lease accounting software acquiring Guardian Global Systems, which provides real estate administration software. [Potomac Tech Wire]
Summerbration Concert is Tonight — Cedar Creek offers a country performance with dance construction at Reston Station Plaza from 7-9 p.m. The concert is free and open for all ages. [Reston Community Center]
Photo via vantagehill/Flickr
Burglar Breaks into Business with Cinder Block — Local police believe Wilson Escobar, 27, of Herndon broke into a business on the 1100 block of Elden Street on Sunday, July 7 at around 4 a.m. Police said the suspect broke into the business using a cinderblock, took cash and cigarettes from the business, and fled from the scene. [Herndon Police Department]
Big Money for PROOF.VC — The strategic capital firm, which is based in Reston, has raised more than $50 million in its second fund. Its second fund topped the first. [Washington Business Journal]
Two Northern Virginia Credit Unions Merge — Northwest Federal, which is based in Herndon, merged with Constellation Federal, which has operations in Reston and Herndon. The new company will be called Northwest Federal. [Washington Business Journal]
Photo via vantagehill/Flickr
A new dessert shop is serving up sweets at Lake Anne Plaza.
Teapot & Cake held a soft opening late last month at its new location on 11404A Washington Plaza-W.
The shop, which describes itself as a “custom cake boutique,” sells layer cakes, cheesecakes, cupcakes, cookies, dough, pastries, pies and bagel breakfast sandwiches.
It also has several gluten free, sugar free and vegan options.
A menu is available online.
Photo via Teapot & Cake/Facebook
Updated at 2:30 p.m. — The Herndon library event was canceled due to “facility issues.”
Learn About Feathered Friends at the Library — Kids ages 6-12 can learn about birds from wildlife ambassadors, who will bring a parrot, owl, crow, duck and rooster. The event runs from 10:30-11:15 a.m. at the Herndon Fortnightly Meeting Room 1. [Fairfax County]
Reston-Based Bechtel Wins NASA Contract — “Bechtel has been awarded a 44-month, $383M contract to design, construct, test and commission a second mobile launcher at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center… It will use the platform to assemble, process and launch the Space Launch System rocket with the Orion spacecraft on missions moon and Mars.” [GovConWire]
King Teddy Brings Modern Swing to Reston Tonight — People can enjoy free modern swing with dance instruction to music from the band King Teddy at the open-air plaza atop Wiehle-Reston East Metro station tonight from 7-9 p.m. [Reston Community Center]
Photo via vantagehill/Flickr
Retailers at VY at Reston Heights are working toward opening their doors this year on the ground-level of the 385-unit apartment community.
JBG Smith, the developer, unveiled a lineup of retailers last year. Recently, Willpower Functional Fitness backed out of the project. A JBG Smith spokesperson did not indicate why this was the case.
The mixed-use project is located at 11830 Sunrise Valley Drive.
While opening dates are estimates only, most of the retailers are expected to open toward the end of the year. Retailers include My Home Thai, Allure Nails, Super Chicken, Reston Barber, Reston Kabob and California-based chain BurgerIM.
My Home Thai — a carry-out restaurant — could be the first to open sometime in the third quarter of this year.
Other retailers are expected to open in the last quarter of the year.
JBG Smith did not provide specific opening dates or timeframes.
Local VA, a gourmet dive bar, originally planned to open by the beginning of this month.
After hitting some roadblocks with permitting and buildout, the business plans to open by late August or early September.
Owner Dylan Clark told Reston Now that the opening date has not been finalized yet.
The business will replace Singh Thai, which closed in March.
Photo by Eve Thompson