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2005 Madison-area tech directory includes more companies, resources

Madison, Wis. — Madison Gas & Electric has released its 2005 Greater Madison Area Directory of High-Tech Companies with expanded and updated listings covering 394 organizations.

The directory, which is now in its 18th year of publication, offers an overview of the high-tech firms, professional organizations, venture capital networks, and University of Wisconsin research programs in Dane County, as well as an array of other resources.

MG&E provides copies of its directory in print or in a downloadable format for $30. Since last year 38 firms have been added, and 20 were dropped because of mergers or requests not to be included.

Click here to purchase the directory online through WTN.

"It helps companies find strategic partners," said Jim Mohrbacher, business development manager for MG&E. "Sometimes companies within the directory themselves don't know what's going on and are able to say, 'Oh, I didn't know that company did that,' and find something in common that they might collaborate or partner on."
Firms that have been identified by Dun & Bradstreet as high-tech according to their North American Industry Classification System codes are included in the directory. In addition, Mohrbacher scours articles published by the Wisconsin Technology Network, InBusiness, and Corporate Report to find other companies that qualify for inclusion. Companies that are interested in being included in the directory can fill out an online form available on MG&E's Web site.

The industry clusters of high-tech companies, determined by their classification codes, vary widely in size. The computer system design & related services cluster includes 129 companies. Others such as telecommunications, electrical equipment & component manufacturing, and medical & diagnostic laboratories include only four or five.

A community resource

Companies and associations all over Madison have come to rely on the MG&E directory to find comprehensive information about other companies in the area. James Leonhart, executive vice president of the Wisconsin Biotechnology Association, said that he uses the directory every year for information on companies that aren't members of the association.

"We are always getting questions, whether it's from the venture capital community or the angel network investors or from people who wish to market a service," Leonhart said. "Surprisingly, not all the companies are members of our association, the directory is the most comprehensive source right now."

Tom Still, president of the Wisconsin Technology Council, called the directory a tool for "networking, recruiting, planning, and above and beyond just being a good, basic resource to have on your desk."

"It's going on 20 years almost. That really corresponds with a lot of activity in the Madison area," said Still, who heads the organization responsible for advising the governor and the Legislature on technology issues. "It's really been a great tool for monitoring our growth, examining where we've been, and as an indicator of where we're going."

The directory, Still said, serves as a recruiting tool, pulling in companies from around the area as it highlights the capable resources for high-tech companies. It also maps where in Dane County there are pockets of different types of companies.

Still and Leonhart said a statewide directory of information would be useful but doubt that such an undertaking will happen soon.

"WE Energies in Milwaukee recently published a similar directory," Still said. "Over time, it would be good to have a compendium to these kind of directories."

Katy Williams is a Madison-based correspondent for WTN and can be reached at

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