Lancashire businesses have punched back from recession with significant growth in turnover, profits and jobs.
Lancashire Business View magazine’s annual Hot 100 feature researches the county’s most profitable SMEs (small and medium sized enterprises). The Hot 100 is a unique ranking that showcases the performance of SMEs and their contributions to the Lancashire economy.
An overview of the 2015 list, which is compiled by Haworths Chartered Accountants, Accrington, reveals total sales, profits and employment figures are significantly higher than a year ago.
• Aggregated Hot 100 pre-tax profit: £157m – up 16% (2014: £135m)
• Aggregated Hot 100 turnover: £1,52bn – up 9% (2014: £1.39bn)
• Aggregated Hot 100 employment: 9,655 – up 5% (2014: 9,047)
In other words, sales are up nine per cent, profit is up 16 per cent and employees are up five per cent in the last 12 months alone.
Richard Slater, publisher of Lancashire Business View, said: “The Hot 100 is populated by the businesses that are the backbone to the nation’s economic success – the small and medium size sector.
“Each summer, we list the county’s best performing SMEs and rank them on the measure that most value highest: the sanity index of profit, and they have achieved great things in the past year.
“The results are nothing short of magnificent and the data is the clearest evidence to date that the county has punched back after the recession.”
Mark Schofield, immediate past president of the North West Society of Chartered Accountants, and head of Haworth’s Chartered Accountants, Accrington said: “The results not only reflect the national recovery, but also the regional recovery taking place in Lancashire which is amongst the best in the entire country.
“Lancashire is truly in a good place right now. We are fortunate to be in business in the county at such a time, so, let’s go out and make the most of it!”
Clair McMeeking, area director of business banking in Lancashire and Cumbria for HSBC, said: “Business in Lancashire are vibrant with a strong desire to grow.”
John Whittingslow, CEO of Napthens Solicitors, Lancashire, said: “This year’s Hot 100 list clearly shows that the Lancashire economy is well on its way to recovery.
“What is really striking is the diversity of businesses represented, with activities in the top ten including retail, energy, sign-making and furnishings to name a few.”
Simon Jordan, director of Themis at Burnley College, said: “The SME sector is a key part of the UK economy, with more than 4.5 million businesses across the country.
“Those in the Hot 100 are continuing to develop ground-breaking products and practices, driving the efforts to put the region on the national map.”
Total pre-tax profit
Increase 2015 over 2014
The Hot 100 feature is part of the July / August issue of Lancashire Business View. Buy now by clicking here.
How the Hot 100 was compiled:
Haworths Chartered Accountants compiled a league table of the top 100 small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in Lancashire, ranked by pre-tax profit. Figures were compiled using the latest data publicly available from Tracker, with additional research based on accounts filed at Companies House.
The criteria used for identifying an SME were based on the Companies Act 2006. To qualify as an SME, the company must satisfy two or more of the following: turnover of not more than £25.9m, balance sheet total of no more than £12.9m and not more than 250 employees.
To be included, companies had to be based in the administrative county of Lancashire plus Blackburn with Darwen and Blackpool. Companies had to show two years’ turnover and profit before tax. Where the ultimate parent and subsidiary company were shortlisted, the ultimate parent was included and the subsidiary company excluded
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