Two companies headquartered in Scotland (compared to three last year) have made it onto the 21st annual Sunday Times Virgin Fast Track 100 league table ranks Britain’s private companies with the fastest-growing sales.
The country’s top-ranked company is BrewDog, which ranks 62 nationally and features on the league table for a record sixth time after sales rose to £71.9m in 2016.
Scotland’s largest independent brewery was valued at £1bn in April when it sold a 22% stake to US private-equity firm TSG Consumer Partners for £213m. It exports to more than 60 countries and has opened nearly 50 bars as far afield as Brazil and Japan.
Signature Pubs is a new entrant on the list. Its 14 pubs, hotels and restaurants across central Scotland include Edinburgh’s Rutland Hotel and the Badger & Co bar. Sales grew to £13.5m last year, when it acquired nine venues, including its biggest deal yet, buying five pubs in Glasgow from Tennents.
Their sales have grown by an average of 53% a year over three years to a total of £85m, and together they employ almost 1,000 people.
The companies in Scotland appear with businesses from around Britain, including restaurant chains Five Guys and Leon, and fashion retailer Missguided. Past stars include mixer drinks maker Fever-Tree, which floated in 2014 and is now worth £2.3bn, and innocent drinks, which sold a majority stake to Coca-Cola in 2013, valuing the company at £440m.
The Fast Track 100 is sponsored by Virgin, Barclays, BDO, BGF and Virgin Media Business, and is compiled by Fast Track, the Oxford-based research and networking events firm.
Sir Richard Branson of Virgin, the title sponsor for all 21 years, commented:
“Entrepreneurs are the lifeblood of the economy; driving innovation, creating jobs and challenging industry norms. The achievements of the companies on this year’s Fast Track 100 list are fantastic. It’s clear over the coming years UK business will have to adapt to different conditions and we must do all we can to support our entrepreneurs – who will be the engines of growth for Britain.”