Sunday Times Hiscox Tech Track 100: North East firms make prestigious table

Three North East companies have made it on to a prestigious league table that ranks the sales growth of Britain’s private technology, media and telecoms firms

Subsea luminaries such as SMD have prospered through high-value engineering
Subsea luminaries such as SMD have prospered through high-value engineering

Three high-flying North East companies have made it on to a prestigious league table that ranks the sales growth of Britain’s private technology, media and telecoms firms.

The 13th annual Sunday Times Hiscox Tech Track 100, to be published this weekend, includes Wallsend-based subsea engineering specialist SMD, Stockton-on-Tees firm Visualsoft, which develops and hosts ecommerce websites, and Newcastle’s transport communications provider Nomad Digital.

Nomad, which employs 116 people, placed 52nd on the list, which looks at annual sales growth over the last three years.

The company, which is used by the likes of Heathrow Express, Eurostar and Virgin Trains, reported sales of nearly £24.4m in its most recent annual accounts, representing a 67% rise over the three year period.

SMD, which employs 495 people, meanwhile, placed 87th, with a 44% growth in sales to over £128.7m. Around 60% of those sales were international, predominately in Japan, China and Brazil.

In 72nd place, then, was Visualsoft, which has offices in Newcastle and London, as well as its Stockton headquarters.

The company grew sales by 51% during the three year period, reporting a draft figure of around £5.37m in June of this year.

It employs 135 people, has almost 1,000 customers and plans to double sales by growing its headcount even further.

Tim Johnson, a director at the company, said: “We have done well out of the recession, to be honest.

“With a struggling high street, it has been natural for retailers to look at other avenues, of which the internet is one.

“We already had an e-commerce platform when retailers really needed to be there and they would find us on the first page when they did Google search.”

The Tech Track 100 league table and awards programme is sponsored by specialist insurance and reinsurance firm Hiscox, as well as Barclays bank.

It is compiled by Fast Track, an Oxford-based research and networking events company.

Steve Langan, managing director of Hiscox UK and Ireland, said: “The passion, determination and resilience that this year’s Tech Track 100 businesses have demonstrated is no mean feat given the economic context and continued challenging trading conditions.”

Journalists

David Whetstone
Culture Editor
Graeme Whitfield
Business Editor
Mark Douglas
Newcastle United Editor
Stuart Rayner
Sports Writer