AUSTIN (KXAN) — An Austin-based tech startup is growing at a rapid rate.

Recently, CharterUP was named the 2nd fastest-growing private company in America according to Inc. Magazine’s top 5000 list.

This is quite the accomplishment for founder Armir Harris, who moved his company’s headquarters to Austin earlier this year.

“Austin has great energy around entrepreneurship, a great entrepreneurial mindset and a great entrepreneurial spirit,” he said.

Just two decades ago, Harris arrived in America as a political refugee after fleeing war-torn Albania.

“We came to the U.S. with $3,000 in our pockets,” he said. “At the age of 15, before I would go to school, I would clean vans and clean limousines.”

This eventually inspired Harris to create CharterUP.

“We worked very closely with bus companies,” he explained. “I realized that in order to put the customer first, we needed real-time data and availability, there was simply no solution like this out there.”

The online charter bus booking platform aims to connect customers with available shuttles in under 60 seconds.

Similar to Expedia or Priceline — for booking group transportation — CharterUP is a one-stop-shop connecting riders and corporations with on-demand booking, ratings and real-time tracking.

Over the past year, it’s provided a big boost to Mark Thronson’s shuttle bus business.

His company — Elite Transportation of Texas — used to only run routes in San Antonio.

Until Thronson was introduced to CharterUP.

“I’m a small business owner,” he said. “Armir came down to San Antonio, looked at what we had to offer and he said we’d be a great partner.”

Nowadays, Thronson has over 10 shuttles running in the Austin area.

“Our business has grown well over 25%, I would say probably scratching 40% right now,” he said.

From 2019 to 2022, CharterUP experienced an unimaginable 111,130% growth rate.

This year, the company has continued to speed ahead, working with over 600 bus operators and more than 4,000 vehicles nationwide.

“Our goal is to have a CharterUP bus in every major intersection across the United States and then the world,” Harris concluded.

To book a shuttle bus or register to become an operator, you can visit CharterUP’s website.