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Buckinghamshire businesses are accelerating growth, says new report

The Buckinghamshire Limited study, conducted by business advisers Grant Thornton, provides an in-depth financial analysis of the county’s 100 largest privately owned companies.

The findings of the 2015 report, unveiled to businesses leaders by Grant Thornton during a breakfast event at the DoubleTree by Hilton at stadiummk, showed that the total turnover for the county’s top 100 companies grew by 17% to £4.37 billion.

The strong performance was matched by an impressive 25.3% increase in profits to £487 million. Nearly three quarters (72%) of companies saw a rise in profits compared with just 61% last year.

Small and medium-sized enterprises, with turnover of under £50 million, grew profit considerably more than their larger counterparts.

The report also highlighted a 12.1% rise in employment, increasing to 30,829. However, average salaries fell by 1.7% to £27,756 and, with no evidence of wholesale wage inflation, this has clearly contributed to the significant profit growth.

Based on the latest company accounts, the Buckinghamshire Limited report covers the period where economic recovery was first recognised as being in full flow and the impact of changes in commodity prices such as oil were being recognised for the first time.

The report breaks the findings down into eight different sectors, all of which saw an increase in turnover with Property & Construction, Technology and Healthcare & Education leading the way with growth of 41.8%, 23.3% and 10.9% respectively.

Similarly, all eight sectors delivered a growth in profit with the most impressive rise seen in the Property & Construction sector at 45%.

Mike Hughes pictured, advisory director at Grant Thornton, said: “This year’s Buckinghamshire Limited report builds and accelerates on the positive trend we have seen over the past two years with the county’s top 100 companies performing strongly.

“The strength in depth of the top 100 is evidenced by the fact that more than three quarters grew turnover over the period and more than 70% were able to increase profits and employment. We are truly part of a vibrant local economy."

Fellow director Giles Mullins said: “Confidence is high and while there is some political and economic uncertainty with a more polarised political landscape and the upcoming EU referendum, plus the slowing Chinese economy, business leaders in the county remain determined.

“Our report confirms Buckinghamshire companies are now, more than ever, able to cope with complex challenges and maximise growth opportunities.

“There is much narrative about the ‘Northern Powerhouse’ but, with another strong performance this year from our county’s businesses, Buckinghamshire is certainly one to watch going forward.” 

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