Midlands' leading businesses recognised for sales growth in league table

By James Pugh | Wolverhampton | Business | Published:

Businesses from the region have been named among Britain's biggest private companies.

JCB telescopic handlers on the production line at the JCB world headquarters in Rocester

They include car and van dealer Greenhous Group, JCB, food producer 2 Sisters Food Group and retail, wholesale and distribution group AF Blakemore & Son.

Published this weekend, the 19th annual Sunday Times HSBC Top Track 100 league table ranks Britain’s 100 private companies with the biggest sales, and before Covid-19 struck.

Although some are planning to make substantial job cuts as a result of coronavirus, the table highlights their continuing contribution to the economy at this difficult time. It also gives examples of how they have stepped up to support their communities and the NHS.

The region’s top-ranked company is JCB, ranked 10th, which has distributed more than 35,000 free meals to vulnerable people across Staffordshire and helped produce medical-grade visors for the NHS using 3D printers. Its 2018 sales were a record £4.1 billion, but it recently announced job losses as a result of the coronavirus crisis.

Birmingham-headquartered 2 Sisters Food Group, which has chicken processing factories in West Bromwich and Wolverhampton, is ranked 22nd and recorded sales of £2.7 billion for the year ending July 2019.

Shropshire-based Greenhous Group, ranked 57th, recorded sales of £1.1 billion for the year ending December 2019.

The Greenhous dealership in Old Potts Way, Shrewsbury

AF Blakemore & Son, which is based in Willenhall, is ranked 60th and recorded sales of £1.1 billion to the year ending April 2019.


The 13 companies headquartered in the Midlands that have made the list have together achieved sales of £23.8 billion and profits of £1.8 billion in their latest financial year, and collectively employ more than 85,300 people.

The companies in the Midlands appear alongside well-known British names, including Dyson, Iceland, John Lewis Partnership, Nando’s and Specsavers.

This year, the 100 companies reached a record £237 billion in total sales, up eight per cent on the prior year, with total profits of £28 billion, up by seven per cent. Three in four companies increased sales in their latest financial year.

The league table programme is sponsored by HSBC and Linklaters, and compiled by Fast Track, the Oxford-based research and networking events firm.

Amanda Murphy, head of commercial banking at HSBC UK, said: “Uncertainty and volatility remain watchwords in the current climate but we at HSBC UK are confident that Britain’s business leaders, such as those at the helm of the companies in the Midlands on this year’s Top Track 100, will rise to the challenge.

"The country has found new reserves of energy in the face of adversity and the businesses that can harness that energy and pace of change will thrive in the ‘new normal’."

James Pugh

By James Pugh

Shropshire Star Business and Farming Editor.

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