The history of VARtek is, in many ways, the history of modern computing. We were founded in 1989 by two of the Dayton region’s earliest new-technology entrepreneurs, Michael Hosford and Kevin Mullendore—just as Microsoft had launched Windows, Apple was introducing its first laptop, and e-mail for the average user was imminent.
In this fast-changing industry, Michael and Kevin saw an opportunity to start one of the area’s first IT support companies, reselling PCs and providing ongoing technical support. VARtek has evolved with technology at every step since and more than 25 years later, we are an industry leader in transforming and strategically guiding educational technology environments.
The first winds of change
As computers became smaller, more powerful, less expensive, and more connected, VARtek shifted away from selling them and moved toward managing complex networks of devices. When the Internet began to drive how computers and computer users function, VARtek assembled a team of experts in mobile and web-based environments.
Today, while we still provide critical support to systems and more than 60,000 devices daily, we also deliver technology strategy, staffing, and financial solutions. Managing technology today is about so much more than installing and repairing equipment. It’s about creating cost-effective, modern technology environments that connect users to new ideas and possibilities.
Finding our niche
We also have continued to refine our target market. We began by serving broad industry sectors, including government contractors, computer stores, and educational institutions. In the late 1990s, we narrowed our market to focus exclusively on K-12 education. By 2008, we had expanded to serve schools in multiple states.
In 2011, we named Darlene Waite as president, and co-founder Kevin Mullendore retired from VARtek. Darlene and Michael Hosford now set the strategy for the company, while Darlene oversees daily operations.
Our ability to take risks when required, be conservative when necessary, and avoid getting caught in trends with short lifespans have earned VARtek recognition over the years. We have been awarded Entrepreneur of the Year and Small Business of the Year and have been listed twice (under the name PCs Plus) as an Inc. 500 company; we have also been named a Dayton Top 100 company.
VARtek will continue to adapt in an industry that will never stop changing. What won’t change, however, is our commitment to our clients: To provide value-added, competitive, innovative solutions to complex technology challenges.