Smaller firms help complete bigger picture

Melett managing director, Ian Warhurst
Melett managing director, Ian Warhurst
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The vital contribution that small and medium sized companies play in the Sheffield City Region’s economy is clearer than ever from the results of the annual Star Business/Barber Harrison & Platt Top 100 SMEs rankings.

This year, for the first time, the analysis by loading independent accountants and business advisers Barber Harrison & Platt goes beyond the historic boundaries of South Yorkshire and Chesterfield.

The expansion to include parts of North Derbyshire and North Nottinghamshire reflects the whole of the area covered by the Local Enterprise Partnership.

It adds some historic names to the mix including Matlock textiles businesses John Smedley and Bowmer Bond, founded in 1784 and 1795 respectively.

Overall, the Top 100 SMEs achieved total pre-tax profits of £155 million on sales of around £1.6 billion, up from profits of £128 million on sales of £1.4 billion in 2012.

Employment rose slightly from just over 8,230 to just under 8,310.

One thing is unchanged from last year. Barnsley company Melett continues to be the region’s top SME, after boosting profits and turnover by around a fifth and jobs by a third. The Zenith Park company, which was founded in 1995 is a double Queen’s Award winner.

Melett exports components to turbocharger reconditioners in more than 100 countries and has opened offices in Chile and Poland this year.

Half of the region’s top profit makers are new to the Top 100 this year and the same is true of the Top 10.

Newcomers include second placed Lazarus Properties and third-placed Bolsover Cruise Club.

Lazarus started out focusing on retail and leisure property in Doncaster 16 years ago and is now the town’s biggest landlord, in addition to owning prestigious properties in Sheffield and London.

Bolsover Cruise Club, meanwhile, is reckoned to be the UK’s top company for cruise ship holidays.