Based at TAXI
in RiNo, 15-employee Aten Design Group
is looking to add three employees by April 2013 and grow to about 20 by the end of the year, says CEO and Co-Founder Justin Toupin. The company is a Drupal-centric web developer, designer and content strategist.
Toupin says the vision for Aten, named for an obscure Egyptian story, is rooted in his childhood. He grew up overseas with his missionary parents, spending nine years in rural Ghana.
"I knew from an early age I wanted to impact people meaningfully and on a global scale," he says. His two childhood passions were storytelling and technology. "In college, I found the intersection of those two things with web development."
Aten's clients are primarily large organizations in the nonprofit and education sectors, including Habitat for Humanity, Stanford University, USAID and others.
Another focal point is "the intersection of nonprofits and journalism," says Toupin. Clients in this area include the Poynter Institute and the Center for Investigative Reporting.
"We talk a lot about having passion for cause," says Toupin. "Everybody on the team loves the cause-focused organizations we work with."
User experience is one of Aten's strong suits, he adds. "Drupal lets us do what we want to do: create really compelling and meaningful content."
Toupin launched Aten with Jon Clark from Arkansas in 2000, relocated to Virginia soon thereafter and moved to Denver in 2007 with five employees. "We wanted to move to a place that matched the spirit and culture of the company," he says of the move.
Aten subsequently jumped from seven employees to 15 in 2012. "Growth for the sake of growth has never been a focal point," says Toupin. "We tend to attract people to the team who want to make an impact."
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