Two local firms in 
Virgin Fast Track 100

Andrew Malcher, co-founder of Harrogate-based High Street TV. (S)
Andrew Malcher, co-founder of Harrogate-based High Street TV. (S)

Two local firms are celebrating after being included in the prestigious 19th annual Sunday Times Virgin Fast Track 100.

The league table, now published for the 19th year, ranks Britain’s private companies with the fastest-growing sales over three years.

There are eight companies headquartered in Yorkshire, including five new entrants to the league table and they have all made a strong contribution to the local economy. Together they employ more than 1,400 staff and have achieved combined sales of £360m.

The top-ranked Yorkshire company in the listing is Heck! Food, based at Kirklington, north of Ripon, which is a new entrant at number 4. The gourmet sausage producer supplies its products to retailers including Tesco, Asda and Morrisons, and sales have grown 159 per cent a year to £5.7m this year.

The company, which is run by husband-and-wife team Andrew and Debbie Keeble alongside their three children, is among around a fifth of league table companies that are thriving under family leadership.

The other local company in the Fast Track 100 is Harrogate-based High Street TV, promotes products, such as Nutribullet blenders, on its own television channel and sells them online, through call centres, and via retailers such as Tesco and Boots. Sales reached £46.4m last year.

The company was founded in 2008 by entrepreneurs Andrew Malcher and Jim Coleman, who previously set up and sold two businesses.

The league table and awards programme is sponsored by Virgin, Barclays, BDO and BGF, and is compiled by Fast Track.

Sir Richard Branson of Virgin, the title sponsor for all 19 years, said: “This year’s Fast Track 100 is packed full of entrepreneurs and family businesses tackling many different challenges head-on and thriving thanks to their team spirit and togetherness.

“Entrepreneurship and family values are at the heart of everything we do at Virgin. Like many on the Fast Track 100, we’ve turned a family business into a business family. Working with family works.”