B2B International
B2B International

May 9, 2017

Two weeks ago the Financial Times ran an analysis of 1000 companies in Europe that have achieved the highest percentage growth in sales between 2012 and 2015. The minimum average growth rate required to be included in the ranking was 16%. They describe the methodology by which these companies were selected and give or take a few quirks, it seems reasonable enough.

What interests us are the industry sectors that are in the list and leading the growth. These are the ones that everyone in business to business marketing needs to keep an eye on. They are changing the character of our landscape.

It isn’t surprising that topping the list are IT consulting and services. It is a sector heavily populated with small companies. We can also see that retail and wholesale companies are ranked second and third in terms of number of fast growing companies. We need shells to live and work in and so the construction industry has a good number of high growth companies.

There are no smokestack industries, or at least very few. These tend to be large companies so it would be unlikely they would be listed in significant numbers. However, noteworthy by their absence are papermaking, steel, shipbuilding, and automotive assembly. The manufacture of engineering products slipped in at rank 9 and chemical/pharmaceuticals crept in towards the bottom of the list.

If you want to win a race, you need to back a fast horse and the list gives us an indication of the horses we need to select.

Sector analysis of fastest growing European companies (Source: Financial Times 26th April, 2017)

Rank
Sector
Number of companies
1
IT Consulting, Services & Software
108
2
Retail (including Mail Order & E-Commerce)
91
3
Wholesale
76
4
Construction, Engineering & Landscaping
69
5
Advertising, Marketing & Event Management
60
6
Consulting, Legal & Tax Counselling, Auditing
48
7
Transport & Logistics
45
8
Banking, Financial Services & Insurance
41
9
Mechanical Engineering & Plant Construction
38
10
Electronics, Electrical & Medical Engineering
36
11
Other manufacturing sectors (e.g. Metal or Furniture)
36
12
Gastronomy, Lodging, & Tourism
33
13
Energy & Utilities
31
14
Human Resources
29
15
Health & Social Affairs
23
16
Telecommunications
21
17
Automotive (Dealers, Manufacturers & Suppliers)
19
18
Food Production
19
19
E-Commerce Technology & Marketing
16
20
IT Hardware
16
21
FinTech
15
22
Packaging, Waste Management & Recycling
15
23
Real Estate
14
24
Education
12
25
Facility Installation, Services & Management
12
26
Media (Print, Digital, Broadcasting)
12
27
Security Technology & Services
12
28
Chemicals & Pharmaceuticals
11
29
Cloud Service Provider
11
30
Gaming, Betting & Entertainment
11
31
Big Data & Data Analytics
10
32
Manufacturer of Textiles, Shoes & Accessories
10
Grand total of companies in the list
1000