Host of region’s companies stake place in profit league table

Ten companies headquartered in the Midlands have won places on a league table ranking Britain’s private companies with the fastest-growing profits over their last three years – largely before Covid-19 struck.

The companies featuring in the Sunday Times BDO Profit Track 100, including eight new entrants, have grown their operating profits by an average of 64% a year over the last three years to a total of £93m, and together they employ more than 2,100 people.

Featuring for the first time this year is Nottingham’s Serif, which has developed a suite of software products for graphic design professionals. With international sales accounting for 90% of turnover, profits grew 66% to £10.6m in 2019. It has provided free trials and 50% discounts to help creative workers affected by the pandemic.

Solihull is home to fitness clothing retailer Gymshark – which topped the table last year and features for a fourth consecutive year. Its profits grew by 55% a year, reaching £30.5m in the year to July 2020, on sales of £260.7m. It was valued at more than £1bn in August when US private equity firm General Atlantic acquired a 21% stake.

The companies in the Midlands appear alongside well-known British brands based across the UK including Thatchers Cider, the Somerset cider-maker, and Brompton, the London-based bicycle manufacturer.

The Profit Track 100 league table is sponsored by BDO, Santander and UBS Wealth Management, and is compiled by Fast Track, the Oxford-based research and networking events firm.

Richard Rose, tax partner at BDO, said: “These ambitious, entrepreneurially-spirited businesses punch well above their weight and are vital for the UK economy; they invest and this investment also creates jobs.

“As the vaccine programme continues to be rolled out and lockdown restrictions are eased, high-growth businesses like these must have adequate support. We are pleased to see the range of business support measures in this year’s Budget. Developing and strengthening our innovation-focused economy is crucial and these businesses will play a key role in the UK’s wider economic recovery post-pandemic.”


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