Carren Rieger, the new president and CEO at Concertium, is excited to put her stamp on the future of the Tampa-based managed services provider.
Rieger founded and led BambinOZ, an infant care company, and spent six years as chief financial officer and chief operating officer at flyus.com, an online travel agency, before she joined Concertium as COO and CFO last year. She was promoted to CEO in July. In her new role, she will tap her small business experience to understand what Concertium’s customers need.
“What happens if the server goes down? What happens if we can’t get into the office? What happens if there’s a hurricane? What happens if my head of IT quits the next day?,” Rieger said. “There are a lot of CEOs who don’t feel comfortable about the technology infrastructure. That’s something we will focus on, to give that peace of mind to the business owners and let them know that we’re their partners.”
Concertium — formerly Shield Watch prior to a 2019 rebranding — specializes in providing managed IT services to small and mid-size businesses.
“For a lot of our clients, especially some of the smaller ones, the concepts of managing their servers and their remote work locations and all of the desktops and cybersecurity and backup and recovery — all of that is complicated. That’s what we do. We lend our IT expertise and our management expertise. We make it transparent and at a price our clients can afford,” Rieger said.
In addition to traditional managed services, managing the data and devices of clients, Concertium has a growing security practice and can serve as a “virtual CIO” for companies that want the input of a chief information officer, but don’t have the budget to hire one full-time. The company also does custom development, with a development arm with 50 people in India and project managers in the United States.
The company has 25 employees based in Tampa. The workforce has held steady since the Covid-19 pandemic began in March, and the team has been working remotely. The business has been growing through the past several months, and Rieger said there are a couple of open positions to fill.
Concertium is a portfolio company of Skyway Group, a private equity investment firm in Tampa. A friend introduced her to Bryan Crino, managing partner of Skyway Group, last year and Rieger joined the company a short time later.
“We are excited about Concertium’s differentiated strategy and believe the company will continue to be a strong market leader,” Crino said in a statement. “Carren Rieger is the right executive to lead the team at Concertium moving forward. Her experience running operations and finance for the company will suit her well in making a smooth transition to the CEO role.”
Private equity ownership not only gives Concertium access to capital, but also the opportunity to connect with business owners in other industries who are dealing with similar challenges, Rieger said.
Female leaders at technology companies are under-represented, according to a 2019 study from Silicon Valley Bank.
“Just 56 percent of startups have at least one woman in an executive position, and only 40 percent have at least one woman on the board of directors,” the study said.
For Rieger, the CEO position at Concertium feels like a natural progression.
“I don’t view us as technology company. I view us as a partner for other companies. We’re problem solvers and that’s something women do very well at,” Rieger said. “We happen to support the technology infrastructure. But our name, Concertium, is connecting data, devices and people in concert. That’s where our name comes from and that’s the way we look at it. We are not a technology company. We are a partner that happens to focuses on the technology infrastructure of companies. But we know it’s about your people and your data and your processes and everything working together. That’s the lens that we take when we partner with clients.”
The Tampa-St. Petersburg area, with an abundance of small to medium-size companies, offers plenty of opportunity for Concertium to grow, she said.
“A lot of businesses feel you have to be a certain size to work with a company like ours. You don’t. We can offer our solutions at every size, whether you have 25 employees or 1,500,” Rieger said. “There are many companies that may never have previously thought that an MSP would be able to partner with them. They thought they couldn’t afford it. That’s something we’re going to focus on.”
Concertium has clients in New Jersey, along the East Coast of the U.S. and in southwest Florida, although most clients are in the Tampa Bay area where it’s easy to get someone on site if needed.
Rieger replaced Pratik Roychoudhury as Concertium’s president and CEO. Roychoudhury stepped down to pursue other interests.