New Look

Fast Track

Names and ages: Jim Rahm, 43; Fred Brandes, 47; Barry Clapp, 46 (l. to r.); and Lee Freeman, 45 (not pictured)

Company name and description: Source Recovery Co. LLC uses a process invented by Brandes that recovers lines of source code (user-friendly languages such as COBOL used to program software applications) that are not updated when computers translate the code into computer-friendly machine language. Recovery of this code allows programmers to make changes in the application that would prevent Y2K-related malfunctions.

Based: Framingham, Massachusetts

Founded: 1992

Start-up costs: $500,000

First-year sales: just under $1 million

1997 sales: $1 million

Number of employees: 15

Clients: American Express, Bell Atlantic, Merrill Lynch, Nissan, Pratt & Whitney

Why the phone won't stop ringing any time soon: According to president Barry Clapp, "Every computer program in the world has to be evaluated to see if it can accommodate the year 2000. Fear of problems caused by the Y2K bug has forced companies to [examine] the source code of every application they have; we can recover missing source code. Anyone working on the Y2K problem will eventually need our services."

Plans for the morning after: "Our process is applicable regardless of the year. Y2K is just a turbocharger for our company," says Clapp. "In the years to come, there will be a resurgence of people wanting to keep their source code in better shape."

Contact Sources

Family Computer Consulting Services, (718) 604-8531,

Skyline International Travel Corp., (800) 758-9095,

Source Recovery Co., (508) 626-9955,

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This article was originally published in the March 1998 print edition of Entrepreneur with the headline: New Look.

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