The Thames Valley 250 – our multi-billion-pound listing of the top private companies in the region – is showing impressive growth – and is set fair to play a key role in the UK recovery
The top 250’s combined turnover has grown from £23 billion to £26b as companies pile on sales. That’s up from £18b just 24 months ago.
The 2014 listing is the fifth year of the TV250 – now established as the key ranking of privately-owned businesses that have their headquarters in the Thames Valley.
From companies with sales measured at over £1,000 million to firms with just under £10m turnover, the 250 lists the most successful businesses in the area. Together the companies employ some 153,000 people.
Based on accounts at Companies House, plus financial data sources such as Experian and FAME, the TV 250 is compiled by The Business Magazine.
It’s a listing of unquoted companies, ranked by turnover, and using, where possible, the last published accounts. Foreign-owned companies are excluded, as are businesses that simply have a registered office, rather than their trading office, in the Thames Valley.
The top seven in our list have not changed places since 2013. Expro International moves up a place to eighth, and Oxford University Press down to ninth, although both companies have increased their revenue.
A new entrant on the 250, at 10, is Beaconsfield-based Enrichment Technology, which also has offices in Germany, France, the Netherlands and the US. The company specialises in uranium enrichment, a key step in preparing uranium for use in nuclear power stations. Formed in 2003, and now a world leader, it is 30% owned by URENCO, which is itself a Thames Valley company, headquartered in Stoke Poges, and at number three in our 250.
At the top of the 250 is Oxford-based car parts manufacturer TI Automotive, which makes brake lines and fuel tanks for vehicles. The company is a global player, growing through acquisition and innovative product development, and it supplies all the world’s major auto manufacturers.
Among companies growing strongly in the top 20 are Westbury Street Holdings and Ridgeway Garages. WSH – whose best-known trading brand is BaxterStorey – has reported double-digit growth for 13 years running. In the past year, turnover rose by nearly 15% – growth attributed by the group to a “continuous drive to improve the quality of service” to customers.
Ridgeway continues to expand. The company is ranked in the top 20 largest motor retail groups in the UK, and is at 36 on the Sunday Times Top Track 250 league table. The Ridgeway story began in 1997 with Volkswagen and Audi showrooms in Newbury and Wantage; its most recent dealership opened this year for Maserati in Oxford.
At the launch event at Cliveden, the invited guests heard from Keith Warburton, CEO of Global Business Culture Group, an internationally recognised expert on the impact that global cultural differences can have on organisations which work cross-border. A full report will of the launch event will be posted soon.
There were also special presentations to award-winning companies which had performed exceptionally during the past year.