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The Business Magazine - B2B Business News - Site Logo
The Business Magazine - B2B Business News - Site Logo
The Business Magazine July 2024
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Solent SME Growth 100

The Business Magazine’s Solent SME Growth 100 celebrates privately-owned small-to-medium-sized enterprises based within the Solent region.

To qualify for the ranking companies must be based in the region and have no more than a £25 million turnover.

The ranking is compiled by The Business Magazine and sponsored by SME Capital, Evelyn Partners, Cobweb Solutions and the Chilworth Partnership.

Championing local business, the Solent SME Growth 100 encompasses companies of all kinds, from commercial vehicle bodyshops and marquee manufacturers to superyachts and retailers.

A networking dinner and awards ceremony took place on 28th February 2024 at The Halo Lounge, Southampton, celebrating the best of business growth in the region.

For more information about the ranking or awards dinner please contact [email protected]

Throughout the Solent SME Growth 100 programme interviews take place with the judging panel for a number of awards.

Ranking

Published: 28 June 2023
2023 Company Town Description Turnover (£'M) Growth % Year-end
1 Pure Cremation Funeral Planning Andover Funeral services 18.7 290.2 31/12/2021
2 FJB Hotels Poole Hotel group 13.6 141.4 31/03/2022
3 Dolphin Motor Homes Southampton Motorhome dealer 20.9 100.4 31/12/2021
4 Mar-Key Marquees Dorset Temporary and semi-permanent structures 8.4 94.9 31/12/2021
5 Specialist Sports Southampton Performance sports distribution and brand marketing agency 15.8 84.0 31/03/2022
6 Powells Group Andover Fit out specialists 21.0 81.6 31/12/2021
7 Spetisbury Construction Dorset Constuction contractor 10.1 67.3 31/12/2021
8 J.B.Corrie and Company Petersfield Specialist fencing installations and supplies 14.3 61.5 31/12/2021
9 Horton Commercials Wimborne Commercial vehicle bodyshop 13.8 55.5 31/12/2021
10 SHMS Contracting Fareham CIS solutions 13.7 55.1 31/03/2022
11 Arlington Fleet Group Eastleigh Railway engineering 16.3 52.9 31/03/2022
12 Saltus Partners Fareham Wealth management 19.5 51.1 31/03/2022
13 Tailor Made Technologies Fareham Specialist IT and telecommunications service provider 16.4 48.9 31/12/2021
14 Salon Supplies Southampton Stockists for the salon industry 10.8 46.3 31/03/2022
15 Storage On Site (SOS) Southampton Transportation, logistics and storage 24.1 44.3 30/06/2022
16 Smarter Technologies Group Ringwood IoT solutions provider 13.1 42.2 31/12/2021
17 Habitech Basingstoke Audio visual solutions 21.5 41.7 30/09/2021
18 N J S Group Chichester Brickwork, scaffolding and roofing 19.6 38.5 30/09/2021
19 D.Stewart & Son Dorset Garden Centre & Horticulture 15.5 36.1 31/01/2022
20 3 Line Electrical Wholesale Poole Independent Electrical Wholesaler  20.5 35.2 30/04/2022
21 Fence Stores Christchurch Fencing supplies 20.0 34.6 31/10/2021
22 W&S Waste Management Poole Recycling & waste management 18.0 34.0 31/03/2022
23 Boatfolk Southampton Marina management 22.0 33.2 31/03/2022
24 Custom Covers Southampton Marquee manufacturer 6.8 32.8 30/11/2021
25 Maidmans Moving and Storage Eastleigh Removals, storage & shredding 1.2 32.6 31/01/2022
26 Northover Energy Sturminster Newton Fuels supplier 18.3 31.8 31/10/2021
27 C H G South West Bridport Plumbing & electrial services 3.1 30.7 31/01/2022
28 Paragon Education & Skills Bournemouth Aprenticeship training provider 12.8 30.6 31/01/2022
29 BP Rolls Andover Motor vehicle Service & Repair 18.8 29.8 31/10/2022
30 Wessex Group Shaftesbury Fire, security, electricals and property care 16.9 29.4 28/02/2022
31 Spinlock Isle of Wight Marine Products 8.7 29.2 31/12/2021
32 NMSB New Milton Construction supplier 21.8 29.1 30/09/2021
33 Comserv Havant Property services 17.6 27.3 31/12/2021
34 Aceliftaway Romsey Complete waste disposal service 9.6 27.1 31/10/2021
35 Wyvern Cargo Poole Local haulage, distribution and warehousing specialists 17.3 25.5 31/03/2022
36 A.J. Wells & Sons lsle of wight Wood & multi-fuel stoves manufacture 19.2 24.9 30/06/2022
37 William Hughes Group Stalbridge Spring & Wire manufacturer 12.2 24.9 31/12/2021
38 Specialised Welding Products Alton Specialised welding products 16.6 24.4 31/03/2022
39 KA Watts Plumbing & Heating Eastleigh Plumbing & heating supplies 16.9 24.3 31/12/2021
40 Charters Peugeot Aldershot Automotive 24.8 24.2 31/12/2021
41 Store Property Investments Chichester Specialists in investment development and refurbishment 16.2 24.1 24/03/2022
42 Caspian ONE Bournemouth Fintech and Broadcast Hiring Specialist 23.7 24.0 31/03/2022
43 Custom Interconnect Andover Appliances, electrical, and electronics manufacturing 18.4 23.9 30/06/2022
44 KSR Lighting Bognor Regis Lighting solutions 15.5 23.2 31/03/2022
45 HS Butyl  Lymington Global supplier of high quality, proven butyl tapes 18.4 22.5 31/03/2022
46 Hampshire Sport & Leisure Southampton Sports ground 18.6 21.8 31/12/2021
47 The Redshank Group Portsmouth IT supplier 3.6 20.5 31/08/2022
48 Caribbean Trading Eastleigh Caribbean retailers and wholesalers 17.6 19.5 30/04/2022
49 Crescent Motorcycle Company Dorset Motorcycle & scooter dealer 12.9 19.1 31/12/2021
50 RiskSTOP Group Dorchester Insurance 10.2 18.6 31/12/2021

Awards Categories

Leadership Team of the Year

This award celebrates and showcases leadership teams who champion their contribution to the community, prioritise the development and leadership capability of their people, and strive for excellence in products or services to build a business with a strong inclusive culture and strategic direction.

SPONSORED BY

International Business of the Year

This award looks to recognise businesses from the Ranking that have exhibited exceptional international performance in the last 12 months either through: growing export sales by entering new regions or significantly increasing revenue in existing markets; establishing operations in new territories; and/or taking an interesting, proactive or pragmatic approach to its business activities in the face of the challenges or opportunities presented from the changes in global economic and geo-political landscape.

SPONSORED BY

Owner-Managed Business of the Year

For a business that: has demonstrated solid growth and strong financial performance; understands its customers; has an engaged workforce with effective leadership; is continually innovating to support future growth. Please also consider entering this award if your business has taken extraordinary steps to overcome challenges or support others over the past 12 months.

SPONSORED BY

Most Outstanding Finance Team of the Year

Awarded in recognition of the outstanding achievements of a finance team in growing the business; be that growth by strategic acquisition, market-leading innovation, product diversification or exploring new markets. We look to recognise businesses within the Ranking that have made the most of the opportunities presented to them, adapting to achieve their maximum potential within their respective sector and in turn grow market share.

SPONSORED BY

Fast Riser Award

Awarded to a privately-owned business that has grown considerably year-on-year with a compelling story to tell; that has shown stellar growth and can demonstrate it is well set up to continue this growth trajectory over the next financial year, thereby having a hugely positive impact on the Solent community.

SPONSORED BY

Private Dinner

INVITATION ONLY
Wednesday 28 February 2024
6pm - 10:30pm
The Halo Lounge, St Mary's Stadium, Southampton
Saint Halo Lounge

Contact us

Meet the Winners

Leadership Team of the Year

This award celebrates and showcases leadership teams who champion their contribution to the community, prioritise the development and leadership capability of their people, and strive for excellence in products or services to build a business with a strong inclusive culture and strategic direction.

Winner: NMSB

“During the Covid-19 pandemic, we took one of our main products – sand – and created a specialised product for the sports market, such as football pitches and golf clubs. This enabled us to diversify and be more recession-proof. Ours is a male-dominated industry, although more women are coming into it, and we have focused on men’s mental health issues. We’ve done a lot of training on this, have mental health first aiders and we partner with a charity focused on the construction industry and men’s mental health. Our leadership team has also gone through mental health training. Another initiative is our employee engagement programme that sees staff putting forward ideas that we aim to deliver on.” Suzanne Wright, Marketing Strategy Director, NMSB

Judges’ comments: “Our winner has shown true diversification through their flexibility during Covid-19, investing in other horticultural industries and markets. With an epidemic on men's mental health at the moment, and with the winner having a high volume of men in their workforce, we felt they humbly took the initiative to understand this problem and strive in the right direction to focus on this issue in their company culture. Away from the business, they support many local charities and communities, such as the IOW and Hampshire Trust.

SPONSORED BY
FINALISTS
  • Caspian ONE
  • NMSB
  • Paragon Education & Skills
  • Paris Smith
  • Spinlock

International Business of the Year

This award looks to recognise businesses from the Ranking that have exhibited exceptional international performance in the last 12 months either through: growing export sales by entering new regions or significantly increasing revenue in existing markets; establishing operations in new territories; and/or taking an interesting, proactive or pragmatic approach to its business activities in the face of the challenges or opportunities presented from the changes in global economic and geo-political landscape.

Winner: Spinlock

“From the outset, the company was set up for international business in safety-critical and other accessories for the sailing market. There are sailors around the world and about 88% of our revenue comes from overseas, with the US our largest market at 25% of revenue. We started in the leisure marine sector and in recent years have been growing in commercial marine, for example, wind farms. We have expanded production at our assembly facility in Cowes to meet demand and our team has grown to 60 people. We were delighted to win a King's Award for Innovation as the award is well regarded around the world.” Caroline Senior, Operations Director, Chris Hill, CEO, Spinlock

Judges’ comments: “This is a business with an impressive global presence, generating the majority of their revenue outside of the UK. They have invested heavily in their production facility to enable continued strong growth in both existing and new markets and they also won the King’s Award for Innovation in 2023.”

SPONSORED BY
FINALISTS
  • A.J Wells & Sons
  • Mar-Key Group
  • Pascoe International
  • Spinlock
  • Vikoma International

Owner-Managed Business of the Year

For a business that: has demonstrated solid growth and strong financial performance; understands its customers; has an engaged workforce with effective leadership; is continually innovating to support future growth. Please also consider entering this award if your business has taken extraordinary steps to overcome challenges or support others over the past 12 months.

Winner: AJ Wells & Sons

“Our company culture and ethos are based around the family. We are Christians and this plays a big part in what we do, how we treat people and how we run our business. We are now in the second and third generations and feel that if the next generation were to come in and take the business on that's fine but we know everyone will have their own paths to tread. As children, we got involved and helped out, which was part of our growing up. We are innovating by developing clean burning technology to improve the efficiency of and reduce the emissions from our wood-burning stoves. We are also developing new products, like our outdoor kitchens and building cladding. We're always open to people's ideas in the company and always willing to give things a try - that's what gives us a buzz.” Guy Wells, Operations Director, A.J Wells & Son

Judges’ comments: “Founded in 1972 and still proudly family-owned, this business really impressed us with the value it places on its company culture, and the way it transforms lives and delights customers, making it an excellent place to work and leave a legacy beyond any one generation of ownership. They have a focus on innovation in both of the key markets which they serve, and are at the forefront of sustainability developments.”

SPONSORED BY
FINALISTS
  • AJ Wells & Sons
  • Caspian ONE
  • Fence Stores
  • Spinlock
  • Tailor Made Technologies

Most Outstanding Finance Team of the Year

Awarded in recognition of the outstanding achievements of a finance team in growing the business; be that growth by strategic acquisition, market-leading innovation, product diversification or exploring new markets. We look to recognise businesses within the Ranking that have made the most of the opportunities presented to them, adapting to achieve their maximum potential within their respective sector and in turn grow market share.

Winner: Boatfolk

“Finance teams are integral to every business and for an SME they are especially important. What makes it so enjoyable to work here is that you aren't doing the same thing every day and each day is different. That helps us to attract and retain people. We try to involve as many people as we can in as many projects as possible to make their work more varied. We use automation and digitalisation for process improvements and have made huge steps forward here. Contrary to a lot of businesses, our finance team is office-based five days a week. This fosters a really good team spirit and stronger relationships. Having an office overlooking Southampton marina also helps.” Jack Callaghan, Head of Finance, boatfolk

Judges’ comments: “The Finance team has made great strides over recent years and now boasts low staff turnover with a good mix of experience and qualification levels. There are clear development opportunities within the team. Investment in technology and embracing automation and digitisation techniques has allowed the team to adapt with the continued growth of the business.’

SPONSORED BY
FINALISTS
  • Boatfolk
  • SMS (Southampton Marine Services)
  • HIPPO (Waste Management Services)
  • Langmead Herbs
  • Saltus Partners

Fast Riser Award

Awarded to a privately-owned business that has grown considerably year-on-year with a compelling story to tell; that has shown stellar growth and can demonstrate it is well set up to continue this growth trajectory over the next financial year, thereby having a hugely positive impact on the Solent community.

Winner: Mar-Key Group

“Our 95% growth in the last two years has come from diversifying our business model – previously we focused mainly on events and now we do a lot of commercial work – and driving our international business. Moving to new premises has greatly increased our capacity. We are looking to grow sustainably at around 20% per year. We are also benefiting from private equity fundraising. We’re growing but also maintaining a fun, 'family business' ethos which is us all over, so this award is for our whole team who we’re really proud of.” Hannah Field, Group Brand and Marketing Manager, Jade Carpenter, Chief Commercial Officer, Mar-Key Group

Judges’ comments: “Our chosen winner is well deserving, and their financial growth speaks for itself, with 95% growth over the last two years. They have a 5% market share in the UK, with an ambitious growth plan for international expansions. Following a recent fund raise, and a strong management team, we got a clear sense they will deliver on their growth plans. Fun with a family business ethos, focus on culture and quality.”

SPONSORED BY
FINALISTS
  • Boatfolk
  • Dolphin Motor Homes
  • Fence Stores
  • Mar-Key Group
  • Saltus Partners

Contact us

The Business Magazine CEO Richard Thompson

Solent SME Growth 100 award winners revealed

Solent-SME-badge

Finalists Announced for the Solent SME Growth 100 Ranking

Solent-SME-badge

Launch of the Solent SME Growth 100 Ranking

Group Titles

Dorset BIZ NewsHampshire BIZ News
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