Dallas Ranks High on Inc.'s Fastest-Growing Biz List. But One Company Sits at the Very Top.

Just spent the morning filling out a job application, just in case Ambit Energy's hiring. Because in case you haven't seen it yet, Inc. magazine put Jere Thompson Jr.'s company at the very tippy-top of its list of America's fastest-growing companies. And how'd Thompson -- grandson of the 7-Eleven founder, a former chair of the North Texas Turnpike Authority, creator of CapRock Fiber Network -- pull that off? Because, he says ...

From the beginning, we decided to focus exclusively on the residential market. I was Ambit's first customer. My parents were the second. But we quickly learned that not everyone was as comfortable with switching over their electricity provider as they were with changing, say, their long-distance provider. They would look at us and say, You want to do what? There was some concern about whether their lights would come on. Two weeks after we started, my wife called me up at the office to ask why the lights were out at home. It was a hot afternoon in March, and I broke out in a cold sweat. I wondered what we had done wrong. Turns out, there were rolling brownouts all over Dallas because of the heat. That was a big relief.

Ambit, incidentally, is but one of 158 Dallas-based companies on Inc.'s list this year -- which means, "The Dallas metro area this year pulled ahead of Houston after tying for ninth place last year."

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