Technology is ever changing. For 50 years SPR has evolved to remain relevant and provide the services that our clients need most.
- The Beginning
- Project Work Begins
- Growing Leadership
- SPR Goes Public
- Leapnet Merger
- Back to Basics
- Anticipation of Growth
- New Heights
- SPR Today
SPR is Founded
SPR – which stands for Systems and Programming Resources – is founded as a staffing company by Gene Figliulo, father of current CEO, Rob Figliulo. Today, Gene would be regarded as a successful CIO, but in 1973 he’s called an EDP (Electronic Data Processing) Manager. He coined the phrase for SPR: “EDP, Experienced Dependable Professionals, when you need them most.”
Also in 1973
- Motorola makes the first cell phone call
- Sears Tower construction is completed
- The entire internet consists of 45 computers and can be mapped out on a napkin
Project Work Begins
In addition to staffing, SPR starts project work. A few years later, Gene begins to step away from the business, preparing for a shift in leadership. SPR also invests in software engineering at this time.
Also in 1982
- Quantum dots are discovered
- Disney opens its futuristic park, EPCOT
- A computer scientist suggests the first smiley in an email 🙂
SPR's New Leadership
Gene retires, and his son Rob becomes the next President of SPR. SPR specializes in re-engineering software as a mainframe-focused IT services organization. The company also develops an affordable fix for the Y2K challenge, helping launch the company as an expert in large, complex systems.
Also in 1991
- The World Wide Web is launched to the public
- Apple introduces the Macintosh PowerBook, featuring a built-in trackball, internal floppy drive, and palm rests.
SPR Goes Public
SPR goes public under Rob Figliulo’s leadership, trading on the NASDAQ as SPRI. The company is the largest provider of mainframe software services in the Midwest and attracts new leadership that is still in the ranks today.
Also in 1997
- 30% of U.S. households are using AOL’s dial up internet
- Deep Blue, an IBM supercomputer, beats a human in chess for the first time
- Titanic is a box office hit
SPR Merges with Leapnet
With Y2K now a thing of the past, SPR merges with Leapnet (NASDAQ: LEAP), a Chicago-based ad agency. SPR transitions into what is now modern web applications.
Also in 2000
- Sony releases PlayStation 2
- USB flash drives enter the market
Back to Basics
The company goes private to get back to basics. SPR hones its focus on strategic IT staffing and project work, and starts implementing new methods such as Agile.
Also in 2002
- The Roomba® vacuum is released
- LinkedIn.com domain goes online
- Mozilla releases the first version of Phoenix, which eventually becomes the browser Firefox
SPR Anticipates Growth
SPR perseveres through revenue threats caused by the economic recession. Dedicated to its employees, SPR does not resort to layoffs – rather, the company begins hiring again to meet anticipated growth in 2010.
Also in 2009
- Kickstarter begins
- Analog TV signal is phased out
- Minecraft game is released
Reaching New Heights
At an all-time high for revenue growth, SPR makes significant impacts in client work with 87% of our clients with us for more than than 5 years.
Also in 2016
- Nobel Prize winners build mini machines out of molecules
- Pokémon GO is released and downloaded 10 million+ times within a week
- Microsoft releases a developer version of HoloLens
Today, SPR is recognized as a leader in guiding clients through technology modernization projects. The company has been named one of Crain’s Largest Private Companies in Chicago, is listed by Illinois Technology Association (ITA) as a leading IoT company and is on the Built In Chicago Top 100 list of Digital Tech Companies in Chicago.
Also in 2021
- Scientists turn to messenger RNA (mRNA) as a way to create COVID-19 vaccines
- GPT-3 mimics human-written text, the most impressive language model produced using machine learning
- TikTok’s recommendation algorithms have contributed to the app’s stunning growth in just 5 years
SPR will celebrate its 50th anniversary in 2023, making it the most enduring professional services firm of its kind.
Also in 2023
- A solar eclipse will cross the continental U.S. on Oct. 14, making the sun look like a ring of fire.
- Chicago’s skyline will change with the completion of six new residential towers.
- GM plans to have 20 new all-electric vehicle models available.