Business & Economy

Altera Investments named fastest-growing UGA business

(L to R) VP for Development and Alumni Relations Jill S. Walton, CFO of Altera Investments Carlos Alcala, Hairy Dawg, CEO of Altera Investments David Fershteyn, and UGA alumni president Lee Zell. Altera Investments was named the 2024 No. 1 Bulldog 100 business during the program’s 15th annual celebration Feb. 9 in Sanford Stadium. (Photo by Decisive Moment Photography)

Alumni Association reveals 2024 Bulldog 100 rankings

The University of Georgia Alumni Association recognized the fastest-growing companies owned or led by UGA alumni during the 15th annual Bulldog 100 Celebration Feb. 9 in the West End Zone of Sanford Stadium.

The 2024 fastest-growing business, Altera Investments, was founded and is led by CEO David Fershteyn, CFO Carlos Alcala and board member Mitch Reiner. They all earned a Bachelor of Business Administration from the Terry College of Business – Fershteyn and Alcala received theirs in 2017, while Reiner received his degree in 2005.

UGA VP for for Development and Alumni Relations applauds this year’s winners from Altera Investments, CEO David Fershteyn and CFO Carlos Alcala. (Photo by Decisive Moment Photography)

Altera Investments is based in Atlanta and is an alternative investment firm focused on the lower middle market. This is the company’s first time on the Bulldog 100 list, although Reiner has represented previous companies that have made the list.

Rounding out the Bulldog 100 top 10 are:

  1. Jetset World Travel, Atlanta
  2. Ryals Brothers, LLC, Lula
  3. Neighborly Software, Atlanta
  4. Capital Real Estate Group, Atlanta
  5. SynerGrx, Chamblee
  6. teXga Farms, Clarkesville
  7. Eagle Christian Tours, Rome
  8. Society 54, LLC, Charlotte, North Carolina
  9. Lighting Pros, Jefferson

(L-R) Kelly Chasteen and Jim Chasteen of ASW Distillery, the 2024 Michael J. Bryan Award winner, with Michael’s wife Leila Bryan and UGA Alumni President Lee Zell. (Photo by Decisive Moment Photography)

“It is our privilege to recognize this year’s honorees, who truly embody the spirit of innovation and entrepreneurship that is found in every Bulldog,” said Lee Zell, president of the UGA Alumni Association. “Welcoming these Bulldogs back to campus was an honor, and we look forward to continuing to celebrate their impact on their communities and industries.”

The Bulldog 100 companies were ranked solely based on their three-year compounded annual growth rates. The Atlanta office of Warren Averett CPAs and Advisors—a Bulldog 100 partner since the program began in 2009—verifies the information submitted by each company and determines the ranked list. On average, companies in the 2024 Bulldog 100 grew by 67 percent each year from 2020-2022, the highest growth rate in the 15-year history of the program.

This year, businesses are headquartered in seven states, with 88 of the businesses located in Georgia. In total, 139 alumni representing over a dozen industries, including health care, financial services, agriculture and real estate, are being recognized.

The fifth annual Michael J. Bryan Award was presented during the Feb. 9 event. The award, named for the co-founder and managing partner of Vino Venue and Atlanta Wine School who passed away in 2017 from cancer, recognizes a returning Bulldog 100 honoree who demonstrates the entrepreneurial spirit and commitment to UGA that was Bryan’s hallmark. This year’s recipients are Jim Chasteen, Charlie Thompson, Kelly Chasteen, Justin Manglitz and Chad Ralston, the team behind ASW Distillery.

To view the complete list of 2024 Bulldog 100 businesses, visit

Nominations for the 2025 Bulldog 100 will open in late spring 2024.