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James Hawley and Dan Rodriguez are back.

The duo founded Tampa-based IT recruitment agency Veredus in 2000 and grew it into a $100 million business before retiring in 2014 with a sale to London-based recruitment firm Hays.

Rodriguez remained with the organization as CEO and President of the US division of Hays until earlier this year when he stepped down and joined Hawley to launch NextPath Career Partners. NextPath is a staffing firm specializing in filling positions in areas such as marketing, sales, human resources, recruiting and consulting.

Dan Rodriguez. Courtesy picture.

In a press release, Hawley and Rodriguez say big recruiting agencies focus on serving clients in sprawling industries like IT and healthcare. This leaves a void in the market for a company like NextPath to fill. Professional services positions represent “an underserved sector” in the recruiting industry, says Rodriguez – who has been named president of the new company, with Hawley serving as CEO.

“During our career in IT staffing, we were constantly getting requests for help in these areas and there just weren’t strong players specializing in these categories,” adds Rodriguez.

NextPath, the statement said, was launched with $2 million in seed funding from Hawley and Rodriguez, with no investment or outside debt. The company has offices in downtown Tampa and Orlando and plans to hire 30-50 employees by the end of 2019. The founders expect to have a headcount of between 80 and 100 by five years.

“We don’t aim to be the biggest recruiting company. We aim to be the best,” Rodriguez said in the release. “We are already generating revenue after only a few days of activity. We are energized by the early successes we have had, and we feel confident and prepared for our future.”


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