Fast Growth 50 launches search for fastest growing companies in the UK


Small and mid-sized businesses with combined annual turnover of £4 billion and responsible for 20,000 new jobs expected to make series of national and regional Fast Growth 50 league tables  


1 March 2023, London – The Fast Growth 50 index, an extensively researched league table of the fastest growing companies, is now open to applications for growing businesses across the UK.

Created in Wales 25 years ago by Professor Dylan Jones-Evans OBE, the Fast Growth 50 will, for the first time, identify the top-performing fast-growth firms, celebrating their achievements as regional champions and helping them to continue making a difference to the UK economy.

In partnership with UBS, the world’s leading global wealth manager, Fast Growth 50 will rank the companies based on turnover growth in eight nations and regions across the UK. Those named in their regional index will be celebrated at the Fast Growth 50 awards event to be held in Belfast, Birmingham, Bristol, Cambridge, Cardiff, Edinburgh, London and Manchester later this year.

To be considered for the 2023 Fast Growth 50 indices, a business must have had sales of at least £250,000 in 2020 and £1 million in 2022, be an independent or privately held business (not a branch plant or wholly owned subsidiary) and be based in the region that they are applying for. The index is then ranked on the highest percentage growth of turnover between 2020 and 2022.

Professor Dylan Jones-Evans OBE, founder of Fast Growth 50, said: “Since we published our first list, we have seen the massive impact that the fastest growing firms in Wales have had on the economy In 2023, we are proud to be taking this important programme national as we believe it is important to highlight the impact that the best-performing businesses have on every nation and region in the UK. The goal of the awards has always been to promote those small and mid-sized companies that are the innovators that lead their towns and cities, no matter what the economy throws at them.”

According to the latest report from the Scaleup Institute, fast-growth firms, which are normally defined as achieving 20% growth per annum, make up less than 0.6% of the UK business population but represent 50% of total SME turnover output. Research has also shown that this elite group of companies are more productive, innovative, and export-oriented than other businesses. Despite an impending recession, nine of 10 plan to grow further in 2023.

It is estimated that the 400 high-growth firms identified by Fast Growth 50 in 2023 will have increased their sales by £4 billion per annum and generated 20,000 new jobs every year. 

Mark Goddard, Head of UK Regions at UBS Global Wealth Management said: We’re proud to see UBS become the lead sponsor of the Fast Growth 50 index, as it expands to shine a spotlight on the fastest-growing small businesses across the UK. Business owners and entrepreneurs are the engine of our economy, and UBS has a long history advising and connecting them on each stage of their wealth journey, helping them to unlock their potential. We look forward to joining the Fast Growth 50 team on this journey and can’t wait to see what ideas, innovation, and talent we uncover during the process”.

To enter your business for the 2023 Fast Growth 50 index and to receive more information about the initiative, visit:

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Editor’s Notes:

The Fast Growth 50 index recognises the top 50 fastest-growing businesses in eight UK nations and regions through extensive research. To celebrate being named in the index, the Fast Growth 50 will host an annual awards ceremony, celebrating the 50 businesses in each region in recognition of their successes and to provide networking opportunities. 

Being part of the Fast Growth 50 index is more than just being awarded for business success. It is a community of entrepreneurs, visionaries and high-growth businesses.

Recent data from the Scale Up Institute shows that scale-up companies or high-growth firms are:

  • Represented across all sectors of the UK economy
  • Generate 18% of all employment and more than 50% of SME turnover despite making up only 0.6% of the UK SME population
  • More productive than other firms with an average turnover of £338,000 per employee
  • More innovative with three out of four introducing or improving a product or service in the last three years
  • Export-oriented with 60% involved in international trade
  • Creating high quality with more satisfied employees
  • More diverse with four in 10 having at least one female director
  • Providing higher levels of apprenticeships to support young people into employment
  • Planning to grow again in 2023 despite the challenges of Covid-19, Europe, inflation and climate change