Data center infrastructure provider DVL Group, an employee-owned company based north of Philadelphia in Bristol Township, Bucks County, says it has expanded nationally with the acquisition of a similar company in Salt Lake City, Utah, Technical Building Systems Company II Inc.

DVL, founded in 1985, is a local representative for Vertiv, a data center computing systems provider that sells Liebert-brand products to area firms and government offices which have become reliant on compact, secure data storage and access, including from remote and cloud locations.

Last year, DVL, which has a satellite office in Harrisburg, added AC Systems, Denver, and its affiliate AC New Mexico. The acquisitions together boosted employment to 110, from 85, and expanded DVL’s clients from the mid-Atlantic to the mountain West, including Utah’s booming software industry, said DVL CEO Gary Hill said in a statement. Terms for the two deals were not disclosed.

The company began an employee stock-ownership program (ESOP) in 2006, as then-CEO Mike Murphy prepared to retire and transferred his ownership to the people he had hired. "An ESOP provides a great vehicle for financial growth of all our hard working associates, one that will continue to generate benefits long into the future,” Murphy said at the time. Staff vest in the program and become owners after three years with the company, said Jill Holland, assistant marketing manager.

Philadelphia is a longtime center of the worker-ownership movement. Area firms with at least partial ESOP ownership include multibillion-dollar (sales) companies such as Wawa, Wegmans, and W.L. Gore & Co., professional firms such as Pennoni Associates, Urban Engineers and William A. Graham Co., and manufacturers such as Modern Group, Omni Cable, and New Age Industries.

DVL is active in promoting worker ownership and its incentive and tax benefits through the ESOP Association.