Virgin Media Business Disruptors to Watch 10

Virgin Media Business and Fast Track have sought to identify 10 of the most disruptive private British companies. The 10 companies, drawn from over 200 identified initially, were selected from a shortlist of 14 following three pitching workshops in November by judges from Virgin Media Business, Fast Track and founders of last year’s inaugural ‘Disruptor 10’ companies. The 10 companies are recognised for having a business model, product or service on the cusp of creating a new market, or transforming existing markets.

The inaugural Virgin Media Business Disruptor 10 companies featured in the 2016 Fast Track 100 supplement in The Sunday Times.

Their directors were invited to the national awards dinner in May 2017 where each company received a certificate.

The 2016 winner was Blockchain, the bitcoin wallet provider.  Its co-founder, Nicolas Cary, was presented with an award by Peter Kelly, Managing Director of Virgin Media Business.

Virgin Media Business Disruptors to Watch 10

Company Disruptive activities
AlphaSightsBusiness information services Connects experienced experts with companies that require their specialist knowledge, challenging the business models of established consultancies and changing top-level corporate decision-making
BlockchainBitcoin wallet provider Says its platform hosts 10m “Bitcoin wallets” and services 50% of the digital currency’s global transactions. Secured $31m (£25m) in 2014, which, at the time, was the largest first-round digital currency fundraising
BrewDogBrewery Sells its craft beer in more than 60 countries. About 6,000 of its beer-loving investors attended the company’s annual meeting in Aberdeen in April and it has raised £30m from 53,000 “equity punks”
CrowdcubeCrowdfunding platform More than 10% of the UK’s public equity fundraisings were completed via this crowdsourcing platform in the first half of this year, including challenger bank Monzo, which raised £1m from 1,800 investors in 96 seconds
EcotricityGreen energy supplier Says it was the world’s first green energy company and that its “electric highway” of 300 charging points at UK service stations is Europe’s largest. It is now pioneering carbon neutral gas production
LendInvestOnline property finance lender Its online finance platform is reinventing the £1.3 trillion mortgage market by cutting completion time to as little as seven days. Has taken a 10% share of the short-term mortgage market
Made.comOnline furniture retailer Raised £50m to develop its pioneering ecommerce model for designer furniture and, with almost 40% of its customers in Europe, it is now expanding its profitable UK business overseas
Notonthehighstreet.comOnline retail marketplace Has raised £33m to develop its ground-breaking online marketplace, which was launched in 2006 and is now used by more than 5,000 creative small businesses to sell their wares
PureGymGym operator With more than 800,000 contract-free members, it has taken a 37% share of the value gym sector in just eight years, with its innovative low-cost model and 24/7 gyms
TransferWiseCurrency transfer platform Says its faster, more transparent currency exchange system handles more than £800m each month and saves customers £1m in fees every day. Valued at more than $1bn after raising $117m

Past stars

Fast Track Ones to Watch 10

The Fast Track Ones to Watch 10 represents the best of the rest of the companies whose sales growth falls just short of the main league table, but who are set to grow rapidly in the future. All shortlisted companies are visited by the Fast Track research team and assessed for inclusion.

The top ten companies are featured in the supplement in The Sunday Times and are invited to the national awards dinner.

They receive a certificate, and one national winner, selected by a judging panel, is announced on the night and presented with an award.

This year’s winner was Olivia Burton, the watch and jewellery maker.

Company HQ location Year end Sales £000s Staff Founded Comment
CornerstoneShaving subscription service Central London Dec 16 *4,039 15 2014 Launched in 2014 by a 25-year-old serial entrepreneur, this shaving subscription service has raised £8m. Sales rose sixfold to £4m in 2016 and are forecast to double in 2017
Filmore & UnionHealth food restaurant chain West Yorkshire Mar 17 *3,989 195 2012 Serves healthy food at 14 eateries in the north of England. A £3.5m investment from BGF will finance new store openings in northern England and the Midlands next year
Green Sheep GroupBaby products manufacturer Stratford-upon-Avon Sep 17 *5,177 25 2006 Sells its high-end baby products online and in retailers such as John Lewis, and has tripled sales in three years to £5.2m in 2017. It plans to launch new products and expand exports
In The StyleOnline fashion retailer Salford Mar 17 *9,218 80 2013 Set up in 2013 from the founder’s bedroom, this online retailer had sales of £9.2m in 2017. It raised private equity funding from Livingbridge in April to expand at home and abroad
ISO SpacesModular buildings designer Truro Sep 17 *2,500 23 2013 Converts shipping containers into pop-up bars and portable stages for clients such as Tesco and Nissan. Demand for social housing is expected to increase production by 400% in 2018
One Retail GroupConsumer products supplier Northwest London Dec 16 †*5,915 4 2013 Set up in 2013 by a 24-year-old, this firm owns six consumer brands, sold in seven countries. It forecasts £15m sales in 2017, and plans to expand into high-street stores and China
Pip + NutNut butter brand Central London Dec 16 *3,100 6 2015 Sells natural nut butters and milks online and in 4,000 stores, including Sainsbury’s. Is expanding overseas and launched in 900 supermarkets in Holland in September
Pizza PilgrimsPizzeria operator Central London Jun 17 *5,985 200 2012 Inspired by their Italian travels, two brothers set up this pizza business in 2012 and have gone from a market stall to eight restaurants, with sales forecast to hit £9m in 2018
Tile MountainOnline tile retailer Stoke-on-Trent Dec 16 *8,800 31 2013 Set up in 2013 by former Topps Tiles executives, this online retailer doubled sales in two years to £8.8m in 2016. It opened a £10m facility in May and this year forecasts £11m sales
WattbikeStatic bike manufacturer Nottingham Sep 17 *11,500 46 2000 Its hi-tech indoor bikes are used by elite athletes such as Jessica Ennis-Hill and the England rugby team. It exports to 50 countries and recently launched a bike for home gyms

* supplied by company   † annualised figure

Past stars