18 November 2013
The total annual revenue of the 50 fastest growing technology companies has exceeded £600 million in the year 2012/13, according to the Deloitte Technology Fast 50.
This provided jobs for over 5,000 people and recorded an average five-year growth rate of 1,382%.
Of the CEOs surveyed, almost 9 out of 10 (88%), reported expectations of growing at a somewhat higher or significantly higher rate, when compared to the previous 12 months. Three years ago ‘managing or forecasting cash flows’ was the number one financial challenge, but, in 2013, only one in 10 companies reported the same concern.
The greatest financial challenge for companies in 2013 was ‘financing investment in growth or Research & Development (R&D)’ cited by a fifth of Fast 50 companies.
Of those CEOs raising capital, almost one in five are looking to fund geographic expansion. Nearly half of the UK Fast 50 winners identified North America (46%) as the foreign markets offering the best potential for growth; Western Europe (28%) came second. No other region was identified by more than 7% of companies.
London appeared to be leading the way with 40% of the Fast 50 companies based in the capital generating 47% of the combined revenues in 2012/13.
London was responsible for the majority of revenue generated by ‘softer’ technology companies with 64% of revenues from internet, software, media and entertainment winners based in the capital.
The 2013 UK Fast 50 comprises of the most regionally diverse group of technology companies, with only two of the top five winners being London-based; it is the first time a company from the North, Avecto, has finished in the top five since 2007.
‘Harder’ technologies were more strongly associated with regions outside of London. For example, 10% of combined winner revenues (£66 million) were generated by GreenTech companies from the Midlands, South East and Scotland. A fifth of combined winner revenues (£126 million) were generated by telecommunications companies – mostly based in the South East.
David Halstead, Deloitte partner leading the UK Fast 50, said: ‘Britain’s technology companies have faced a challenging five years, even though the winners have grown significantly faster than the economy over the past five years, but they cannot, and do not, operate in isolation. In line with the wider economy, the entrants reveal a challenging five-year period, but with a bright outlook. We have seen an increase in software companies from 13 to 16. Internet companies are second with 12 in this year’s ranking, compared to 13 in 2012.’