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By Nick Wakeman

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Nick Wakeman

Soloway launches consulting firm

Former Professional Services Council CEO Stan Soloway has launched his own consulting firm – Celero Strategies – to help companies perform better in the federal market.

Soloway, who stepped down from PSC in December after running the industry group for 15 years, said he saw a need for such a consulting firm because of the massive changes going on in the market.

“Celero will be focused on helping companies adapt to and succeed in this new environment,” he said in a release. “Celero is Latin for accelerate. And that’s precisely what we aim to do, help our clients accelerate.”

In the last couple of years at PSC, Soloway often spoke of a convergence going on in the federal market with the melding of technologies and services. One of the prime examples of this is the "X as a service" model where customers buy computing power such as software, infrastructure and applications as a utility rather than buying products and then the services to support the product.

Many companies have struggled to adapt to this business model where federal agencies want to buy more based on consumption.

Some other trends he sees is that companies need help navigating changes in how the government is buying and the challenge of engaging with customers in today’s market.

“There is a whole set of layers of change going on in the market today,” he said.

One example is that the government is more open to innovation; not just technology, but also in how products or services are delivered.

“I wouldn’t say the government is a center of innovation, but there are a growing number of pockets, and there is more openness to try new approaches,” he said.

But these changes often mean companies need new business models and capabilities to successfully deliver what the customer wants.

There also is the continuing challenge of communicating with the government because of the level of disconnect between the different stakeholders in a procurement.

Soloway described it as a three-legged stool. One leg controls the money, one controls the contracts and the third is the one who has the need.

“Companies have to adapt,” he said. And one mechanism is to use their proposals to not just sell but also to educate the customer.

Soloway’s new company will offer strategic consulting, market analysis, organizational development, mergers and acquisitions support, crisis communications and other services.

He currently has no employees but has built a network of experts with deep knowledge of the market and government that he can tap as needed.

He also has two clients, one large business and one small. He declined to name them. He’s helping the large business refine its mergers and acquisition strategy.

The firm doesn’t have a website yet, but one is coming soon and will have the domain www.celerostrat.com.

In addition to leading PSC for 15 years, Soloway served as deputy undersecretary of Defense during the Clinton administration and worked on issues related to acquisition and business operations.

Soloway is one of those rare people in the market who has strong ties back into government but also in the banking, accounting and consulting arenas in the private sector. And thanks to his work at PSC, he also knows and is known by virtually everyone running a company focused on the government market.

His stature in the market has been widely recognized. He recently won the 2016 Government Technology Leadership award at CES. He was the 2013 IT Industry Executive of the Year at the annual GCN Awards Gala, the 2013 Roback Memorial Award winner from the National Contract Management Association, and he has one two Federal 100 awards from FCW.

He also writes a regular column for Washington Technology.

Posted by Nick Wakeman on Feb 08, 2016 at 9:26 AM

Reader Comments

Mon, Feb 8, 2016

No one knows this business like Stan. He's got a chance of success because he knows a lot of deep-pocketed potential clients, too. However, most people selling prof. services to this industry know that it tends to think, "I know at least as much as what any consultant can tell me." Arrogance borne of an easy, customer-led growth curve that no longer exists. So, Stan's strike zone will be new companies, new investors, and firms in deep kimchi, etc. He won't sell gigantic jobs, but that may well be his preference.

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