the nitor network podcast

Does the Mid-Market Suffer from Middle-Child Syndrome?

Join us for our conversation with Doug Farren from the National Center for the Middle Market to examine the state of the middle market in the US and answer these questions: 

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  • What is the mid-market?
  • What is in store for the middle market?
  • What are the threats to the middle market?
  • How does the mid-market identify itself?
  • What is the Bipartisan Congressional Caucus on Middle Market Growth and how will it benefit companies in the mid-market?

The middle market is defined differently by different groups causing confusion, the National Center for the Middle Market defines the middle market as the middle one-third of the US economy. These companies generate revenues between $10 million to $1 billion.  This is a large span, so subcategories were created to define companies in the lower, core and upper mid-market.

Not all mid-market companies are equal.  There are three typical categories:

  1. Fast growth companies that quickly grow through the middle market  
  2. Firms ready for mergers and acquisitions
  3. Those companies that are not interested in becoming large - they are comfortable where they are in the middle market and intend to stay there

Doug says currently the largest threat to the mid-market is not taking global competition seriously. But, this threat is not impacting the strength of the mid-market which is made up of 200,000 companies, creates 50 million US jobs, and has shown 6 - 7% revenue growth year-over-year since 2012.

Government regulations tend to favor small companies and Fortune 500 companies can afford to manage regulations.  The mid-market companies are often forgotten. The National Center for the Middle Market and the Bipartisan Congressional Caucus on Middle Market Growth are working to fight for the mid-market.

We would like to give a special thank you to our guest, Doug Farren.

Doug Farren is the Managing Director of the National Center for the Middle Market at The Ohio State University Fisher College of Business. In his role, he leads the day-to-day operations of the Center which include research, corporate outreach, and student activities in addition to long-range strategic planning. Prior to launching the NCMM in 2011, he spent 10 years with LBrands, where he worked in various roles including Supply Chain Planning, Distribution Center Operations, and Financial Planning and Analysis supporting brands such as Victoria’s Secret and Bath and Body Works . Farren started with LBrands as a summer intern while completing his MBA in Operations and Logistics Management at Fisher. Farren’s previous experience includes business management for Six Sigma Qualtec, a process improvement consulting firm based on Scottsdale, Arizona. His primary functions included marketing strategy and on-site training and implementation. As part of his responsibilities, he was certified in 1998 as a Six Sigma Black Belt in Transactional Quality. Farren attended Penn State University, where he earned a Bachelor of Science with a focus on business management and was a member of the football program as a player and student assistant coach.