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Updated: March 6, 2023

Rarebreed indeed: Portland vet startup tops Inc.'s regional growth list

Vets with a doggy Photo courtesy /Rarebreed Veterinary Partners Rarebreed Veterinary Partners is a Portland-based independent network of veterinary practices. Shown here are Dr. Sarah Horn, left, and technician Gianna Dettorre, with a patient.

Portland-based Rarebreed Veterinary Partners is the top performer of 169 of the fastest-growing privately held companies in nine northeastern states as ranked by Inc. magazine.

The placement is based on 4,691% revenue growth between 2019 and 2021.

The company, an independent network of veterinary practices founded in 2018, is also one of only two Maine enterprises on the list, joined by Auburn-based food maker Scott & Jon's at No. 102. Scott & Jon’s makes low-calorie frozen shrimp bowls. 

The list ranks 1,125 of the country's fastest-growing companies, divided into seven regions. For purposes of the rankings, the Northeast region comprises six New England states plus New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania.

“This year’s Inc. 5000 Regional winners represent one of the most exceptional and exciting lists of America’s off-the-charts growth companies,” said Scott Omelianuk, Inc.’s editor-in-chief. ”They’re disruptors and job creators, and all delivered an outsize impact on the economy. Remember their names and follow their lead. These are the companies you’ll be hearing about for years to come.”

Rarebreed Veterinary Partners, led by co-founder and CEO Dan Espinal, has around 3,000 employees on the payroll, of which 120 work at the firm’s Pearl Street headquarters, according to a spokeswoman. 

She said the company experienced a revenue growth rate of more than 117% between 2021 and 2022 "and look forward to growing and strengthening our veterinary ecosystem of family practices, urgent care and specialty/ER hospitals in the year ahead." The company lists practices in 11 eastern states from Maine to Florida on its website.

Espinal is a combat veteran and Airborne Ranger-qualified infantry officer with service time as a combat advisor embedded with the Afghan National Civil Order Police. He previously headed the in-house chemistry business and corporate development and strategy team at IDEXX Laboratories Inc. (NASDAQ: IDXX).

"We are honored and humbled by this achievement,” Sarah Mills, Rarebreed's vice president of marketing and communications, said in a statement emailed to Mainebiz about the Inc. ranking. “So many people have contributed to our success and help live out our values of love, respect and fun every day. We’re thankful for our practice partners who took a chance on us, and our teams who provide exceptional care to our community pets."

Companies in the 2023 Inc. 5000 Regionals are ranked according to percentage revenue growth when comparing 2019 and 2021.

To qualify, firms must have been founded and generating revenue by March 31, 2019. They had to be U.S.-based, privately held, for-profit, and independent — not subsidiaries or divisions of other companies — as of Dec. 31, 2021. (Since then, a number of companies on the list have gone public or been acquired, according to the publication.) 

The minimum revenue required for 2019 is $100,000; the minimum for 2021 is $1 million, though Inc. said it reserves the right to decline applicants for subjective reasons.

More information

Find the full Inc. Regionals 2023 rankings here.

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