In this article we are going to list the 15 Fastest Growing UK Companies. Click to skip ahead and jump to the 5 Fastest Growing UK Companies. The United Kingdom is one of the most advanced nations not just in Europe, but the world as well, and has a truly globalized economy to its name. In terms of total GDP, the UK has the 5th biggest economy in the world, with the 2020 GDP being worth $2.64 trillion, which in itself is a massive decline of 10% from 2019 after achieving slight growths in the past few years.
The above stats don’t mean to indicate that the UK has only become a major power recently; if anything, its power has declined over the past century as countries that formed part of the British Empire started to gain independence, reducing the influence and authority of the empire. After all, remember that even India, the biggest democracy in the world and the second biggest country in the world, was also part of the British Empire not too long ago, only gaining independence in 1947. In fact, just to emphasize more on how vast and influential the British Empire was, in 1870, it accounted for nearly 10% of the global GDP, primarily due to it being the first country in the world to have industrialized.
While it may not be the superpower it once was, the UK’s bustling economy and power can still be seen today in the 21st, albeit somewhat diminished from the past. London is a major global business hub and has seen the presence of many top Fortune 500 companies, and at least 77 companies from the nation made it to the Forbes Global 2000 list in 2020, which includes some of the biggest names in various industries such as GlaxoSmithKline plc (NYSE:GSK) which is one of the biggest biotech companies in the world, HSBC Holdings (NYSE:HSBC), which is one of the biggest banks in the world and the biggest in Europe, British American Tobacco (NYSE:BTI) which is one of the biggest FMCG companies in the world, Rio Tinto plc (NYSE:RIO) one of the biggest mining companies in the world and Barclays PLC (NYSE:BCS), one of the most powerful banks in the world. These are just a few of the companies which represent the United Kingdom globally and are each among the leaders of the industry that they operate in.
The United Kingdom has a very diverse economy, and hence, as can be seen from the examples above, has a major presence in various global industries. It is also the fifth biggest exporter in the world, while simultaneously being the fifth largest importer in the world too. In terms of foreign direct investment, it has the third largest inwards foreign direct investment, as well as the fifth largest outwards foreign direct investment. Nearly half of the UK’s imports and exports have to do with countries in the European Union, and with its exit from the EU finally being completed recently, the impact of the exit is yet to be properly ascertained and could affect these numbers quite significantly.
While the services sector accounts for nearly 80% of the GDP in the UK, it is important to note that the UK has a major finance industry, and London is the second biggest finance center in the entire world, while its aerospace industry is also the second largest in the world. Some of the biggest banks, such as aforementioned HSBC Holdings plc (NYSE:HSBC) and Barclays plc (NYSE:BCS) are headquartered in the UK. And while the country has been a net importer of oil for the last 15 years, it does have major reserves which help to bolster the economy.
The potential of UK economy has not been overlooked by US hedge funds, many of whom are heavily invested in many UK-based companies, including the aforementioned HSBC Holdings plc (NYSE:HSBC), Barclays plc (NYSE:BCS), British American Tobacco (NYSE:BTI), GlaxoSmithKline plc (NYSE:GSK), and Rio Tinto plc (NYSE:RIO).
Insider Monkey data that looks at hedge funds’ investments in US-listed companies shows that 25 funds own shares of GlaxoSmithKline plc (NYSE:GSK), including names like Ken Fisher’s Fisher Asset Management with a $600 million position and Jim Simons’ Renaissance Technologies with $312 million worth of stock. Renaissance is also invested in HSBC Holdings (NYSE:HSBC), alongside Ken Griffin’s Citadel Investment Group, LMR Partners, and Israel Englander’s Millennium Management, among others. British American Tobacco (NYSE:BTI) counts among its shareholders David Shaw’s D. E. Shaw and Paul Marshall and Ian Wace’s Marshall Wace LLP, while in Rio Tinto plc (NYSE:RIO), hedge funds tracked by Insider Monkey own around $1.60 billion worth of stock, with the largest stake of $971 million was disclosed by Fisher Asset Management.
However, even an economy as stable and powerful as the United Kingdom was susceptible to the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic. While the Covid-19 virus struck initially in China, it quickly made its way to Italy, and from there to other European countries with the continent becoming the epicenter of the pandemic for several months. The UK has been roundly criticized for its poor handling of the virus from the start, with Prime Minister Boris Johnson initially not taking the virus seriously which is partially the reason why the UK has more than 4.3 million cases and more than 127,000 deaths from the virus.
While late, strict lockdowns have been implemented over the past year, which led to the nation entering a recession and even by May 2020, 23% of the entire British workforce had been furloughed, which means that the government was subsidizing the wages of the workforce. In the first half of 2020, the GDP of the country shrank by around 22.6%, which is the worst recession in the history of the company and worse than any other European country. The overall downturn of 9.9% in 2020 was the first in over 300 years since the Great Frost in 1709.
It should be noted though that the United Kingdom has done well to recover from its initial blunders, and is one of the global leaders in implementing vaccines to its citizens, even as other major European countries have struggled majorly to acquire the required supply and inoculate its citizens against the Covid-19 virus. Just a few days ago, the third lockdown was finally eased in most places across the UK with people finally being able to go out in restricted numbers, with further easing of rules expected around the mid of May, as cases eased in the nation as did deaths and hospitalizations. Whether this will remain in the same stead, we will see even as most countries are now facing a major resurgence of cases and deaths.
While many businesses have crumbled and had to file for bankruptcy, most of the major companies have enough reserves and influence to emerge unscathed. However, while these are major companies, their growth rates are often steady, and certainly not exponential. Hence, we took a different direction to determine the fastest growing UK companies, rather than the biggest. We have used a report by the Syndicate Room to determine the fastest growing companies in the nation by taking a look at their increase in valuation between 2016 to 2019. While the pandemic may have dented these numbers in 2020, and we will know once figures are released later on in this year, it is unlikely that any of these companies will have dropped majorly.
So without further ado, let’s take a look at the fastest growing UK Compaies, starting with number 15:
Multiple increase in valuations from 2016 to 2019: 27.7
Enigma is a fast growing digital agency which builds data infrastructure, developer friendly APIs as well as intelligent tools for its customers.
14. The Ink Factory
Multiple increase in valuations from 2016 to 2019: 27.7
The Ink Factory is an independent studio, which is responsible for several productions including The Night Manager, The Little Drummer Girl and Fighting with my family among others.
13. Digital Shadows
Multiple increase in valuations from 2016 to 2019: 30.8
Digital Shadows provides software that protects you from digital risks, and provides its services to various companies and customers.
12. Push Doctor
Multiple increase in valuations from 2016 to 2019: 34.8
Push Doctor was founded in 2013, and was the first company in the UK to offer video consultations with patients through smartphones. It currently has 5.4 million people, and is the perfect solution in a pandemic, which may see the company’s ranking being boosted higher next year.
Multiple increase in valuations from 2016 to 2019: 39.1
Paddle is a revenue delivery platform, and in 2018, was the fastest growing software company in the UK, and earns a well deserved spot in our list of fastest growing UK companies.
Multiple increase in valuations from 2016 to 2019: 42.8
Privitar is a company which engages in privacy engineering, with its goal being to ensure that privacy and technology can work and exist together.
Multiple increase in valuations from 2016 to 2019: 44.6
Next in line in our list of 15 fastest growing UK Companies is FACEIT. The company was established in London in 2012 and is an e-sports platform, boasting more than 15 million users and establishes leagues with major payoffs for winners.
Multiple increase in valuations from 2016 to 2019: 54.2
Pollen is a marketplace for travel and events, with many events being exclusively organized by the company. However, the company hasn’t fared very well during the pandemic despite securing $60 million in funding in October 2019, and had to axe 31% of its staff, or nearly 70 people, in May 2020.
7. Black Sheep Coffee
Multiple increase in valuations from 2016 to 2019: 64.1
The 64.1 multiple increase in valuation puts Black Sheep Coffee on the seventh spot in our list of fastest growing UK Companies. The Black Sheep Coffee is a specialist independent coffee chain, using high quality ingredients to provide an unmatched taste. The company was founded in 2013 and has uniquely refused to go down the VC route, in order to maintain its independence.
Multiple increase in valuation from 2016 to 2019: 65.5
Elvie aims to improve the the tech lives of women, with its mission being to ‘ improve women’s lives through smarter technology’. The company was founded in 2013 ‘ to create a global hub of connected health and lifestyle products for women’. Registering a multiple increase in valuation of 65.5, Elvie ranks sixth among fastest growing UK Companies.
Follow this link to see which businesses made it to the top 5 fastest growing UK companies.
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Disclosure: None. 15 fastest growing UK companies is originally published at Insider Monkey.