From chat dating service to communications giant
MICHAEL Whelan and Jonathan Rowsell went into business together straight out of the University of Plymouth.
The graduates started up a chat dating service in a Chaddlewood house during 2002.
They soon diversified into business applications, mobile billing and messaging – and the venture snowballed.
And today, txtNation is one of the leading players in the mobile services sector.
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The firm has more than 7,000 clients in the UK and internationally.
They include Sony, LG electronics, Wimbledon tennis tournament, BP, local authorities, and TV show Big Brother, plus charities including Teenage Cancer Trust and Help for Heroes.
Business Awards judges called the company "a brilliant telecommunications business that has shown growth, ambition and innovation".
Jonathan said: "Getting the award is absolutely fantastic. There was such strong competition.
"We just started off working out of a house on Chaddlewood Avenue. Our revenues have grown massively and we've got some amazing clients.
"It's all down to hard work and recruiting the right people, and having the ambition to drive it forward and become a global leader in what we do.
"We would like to thank our staff. Without them we wouldn't be here today."
Michael added: "We would like to employ more people in Plymouth. There's a reason we stayed here. It's a great city."
txtNation employs more than 30 people, many of them graduates from Plymouth University. It has plans to take on more staff, particularly sales and high-level support, this year.
txtNation revenues rose from £3.5 million in 2010 to £8.4 million in 2011, and this year it predicts that it will pass the £10 million mark.