The 2014 Seven Small Jewels: Meridian Advisory Group

Meridian Advisory Group In the rapidly changing, evolving and converging worlds of broad-band, mobile and media industries, Meridian Advisory Group is a bit of a newcomer. Not the founders, or the 20 billable consultants who currently make up the firm—there’s nothing all that ‘new’ about them; they all have more than 15 years of industry and consulting experience.

“In other words, what Accenture or another larger competitor can do with five or six people, Meridian Advisory Group can accomplish with two or three,” says Shahid Khan, Managing Partner of the firm.

The firm itself was just founded in 2010, but didn’t take long to establish itself and has been on a dramatic upward trajectory ever since. Meridian has been growing at 30 percent or more each year in terms of both revenue and resources, says Khan.

Meridian outpaced that rate when it posted better than 50 percent growth in 2013. Forecasts for 2014 are a little bit more modest at 35 percent, but still impressively aggressive, nonetheless.

Khan says the growth is not due to capturing one or two large clients or projects, but rather is sustained and balanced. And he also says the aggressive growth will continue over the next several years at that 30 percent to 35 percent rate. “Our goal, of course, is to beat those targets each year,” Khan says. “In three years, could I see us as a $25 to $30 million firm? Absolutely.”

In order to achieve that goal, Khan says, the New York-based firm will have to become “bi-coastal,” by opening an office location in Silicon Valley to better serve clients on the West Coast. All of Meridian’s clients, Kahn says, cover the ecosystem of the communications industry, including device companies, cable companies and content companies.

And all of the relationships Meridian enjoys with its clients are word-of-mouth. “We haven’t done a lot of marketing and PR for the company, at all,” he says. “All of our clients are either through previous relationships or referrals. We started with just a few clients and in 2013 we had 10 clients.”

Khan says Meridian’s track record is one of “getting things done” with clients. “In other words, we actually work with our clients to help implement a strategy—how you launch new products, solutions and services, and we’ll work with them through the entire process,” Khan says. “That’s something very different and clients don’t see that from main-stream consulting companies.”

A big part of that equation, he says, is the senior-level model at the firm, which is attractive to both Meridian’s consultants and its clients,” he says. “Clients benefit because they get exposure to experienced talent and consultants like it because nearly everyone in the firm gets exposure to C-level talent at the client companies, which are the people we are working with day in and day out.”

Khan says the firm has been very fortunate to be able to attract and retain the best people. “So far, through referrals we’ve been able to hire the talent we want,” Khan says. “At some point as we grow, to find people we’ll have to get our name out there and tell our story, but so far, we haven’t had to do that yet.”

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