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COVER STORY: Ralph “Ted” Phillips Synergy Development Partners, MBE of the Year

The first order of business for Synergy Development Partners founders was the company name. The founders wanted to put aside egos and pivot away from the traditional “namesake” companies; opting, instead, to create something that was fresh, new and organic. And since their own company formation was more about chemistry, teamwork and balance, and less about self-centered ambitions, ‘synergy’– the interaction or cooperation of two or more substances, or agents to produce a combined effect greater than the sum of their separate effects, says Ralph “Ted” Phillips, principal, EVP, struck the right chord. Name down, culture cultivated, Synergy began operations in Atlanta in 2003 with its goals set on developing and building mixed use multifamily housing along with fulfilling a need for quality commercial, tenant and retail build-outs. At their best, they are managing the design and construction process from start to finish with synergy as the grout and mortar.

The Sketch

During my junior and senior years at Georgia Institute of Technology, I took several construction management classes and obtained a certificate in Construction Management. It was at that point I realized that my passion leaned more towards building and constructing than designing. Since childhood I always had a knack for being creative, designing and constructing. I was unaware that there was such a thing as the “Construction Industry” and little did I know that my past childhood hobbies would play an integral role in my life long career decision. Once I began to focus more in construction than design, it became “second nature.” There is no greater feeling than seeing people engaging in buildings, developments or spaces that I played a role in creating.

The Process Through the years, our approach with clients has been different from most construction and development firms. We always like to say “we are more than just a construction company.” With my partners’ background (Real Estate, marketing and sales) and my background in design, construction and years of development, we have been able to engage with our clients from multiple perspectives. We’ve had projects where we added design services, brokered real estate transactions, provided design-build services, and provided construction consultant services such as construction and program management. Our “value add” has been providing services through one entity which has created repeat business and referrals from our previous clients/partners.

The Win

I was surprised and excited when we were first awarded a Federal Task-Order through our 8(A) Certification. We spent two years marketing to this new client (The Federal Government) and all of their agencies. We spent countless hours attending workshops and conferences throughout the Sun Belt Region. Today, we are proud to say that we are on the 4th year of our Federal Task-Order and we’ve been able to secure work through other government agencies because our past performance and professional staff.


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