Rank Company Location Year end Sales £m % annual growth Profit £m Staff Main shareholders
1 John Lewis PartnershipFood and general retailer Central London Jan 04 *4,500 *202 59,600 Employees (100%)
2 Coral EurobetBetting shop operator Essex Sep 03 3,794 104 5,841 Charterhouse Development Capital (84%), management (16%)
3 Palmer and HarveyWholesale distributor East Sussex Apr 03 3,547 18 3,849 Management and employees (75%), previous shareholders (25%)
4 Hogg RobinsonBusiness services provider Hampshire Mar 03 2,121 28 5,740 Permira (61%)
5 Caudwell HoldingsMobile phone retailer Stoke-on-Trent Dec 02 2,036 31 6,018 John and Brian Caudwell (95%)
6 SwireConglomerate Central London Dec 02 *1,948 *353 131,000 Swire family (66%)
7 Shop DirectInternet and catalogue retailer Liverpool Apr 03 1,845 60 15,055 Sir David and Sir Frederick Barclay (95%), Bank of Scotland (5%)
8 ArcadiaFashion retailer Central London Aug 03 1,823 228 18,134 Philip Green and family (89%)
9 DebenhamsDepartment store operator Central London Aug 03 1,810 176 23,560 CVC Capital, Texas Pacific and Merrill Lynch PE (100%)
10 INEOSChemicals manufacturer UK/Switzerland Dec 03 *1,782 *156 2,459 Staff and management (100%)
11 MG RoverCar maker Birmingham Dec 02 1,741 -95 6,600 Management (50%), staff (25%), dealers (25%)
12 Rigby GroupIT infrastructure integrator Stratford-upon-Avon Mar 03 *1,740 *31 4,461 Sir Peter Rigby and family (100%)
13 RHMFood producer Marlow May 03 *1,723 *62 20,216 Doughty Hanson, management
14 Focus DIYDIY retailer Crewe Oct 03 *1,664 *116 16,024 Duke Street Capital, Apax Partners, management
15 TI AutomotiveCar parts maker Oxford/USA Dec 03 *1,572 *74 21,875 Smiths Group (19.99%), management (25%)
16 Brakes GroupFood distributor Kent Dec 03 *1,546 *14 8,961 Clayton, Dubilier & Rice (100%)
17 StemcorSteel trader Central London Dec 03 *1,535 *15 322 Ralph Oppenheimer and family (81%)
18 Virgin AtlanticAirline and tour operator Crawley Feb 04 †1,503 n/a 7,519 Virgin Investments (51%) and Singapore Airlines (49%)
19 Grampian Country Food GroupFood producer Livingston May 03 1,470 34 19,032 Alfred Duncan (71%), HBOS (15%), management (14%)
20 Arnold Clark AutomobilesCar dealer Glasgow Dec 03 *1,450 *56 6,410 Arnold Clark and family (100%)
21 United BiscuitsBranded snack manufacturer West London Jan 04 * †1,307 * †13 10,000 Cinven (30%), PAI Partners (30%), Nabisco (25%), MidOcean Partners (15%)
22 Laing O’RourkeEngineering and construction group Dartford Mar 03 1,258 44 8,778 Raymond O'Rourke (55%), Hugh O'Rourke (29%)
23 LINPACPackaging maker West Yorkshire Dec 02 1,213 66 12,203 Montagu Private Equity, Cornish family
24 Camden Motor GroupCar dealer Northampton Dec 03 *1,102 *11 1,446 Management (100%)
25 Unipart GroupManufacturing, logistics and consultancy Oxford Jun 03 1,058 10 7,626 Employees and management (55%), institutions including 3i (45%)
26 Memec GroupElectronics distributor Oxfordshire Dec 03 *1,050 *-5 2,400 Permira and other investors (80%), management (20%)
27 WilkoValue retailer Nottinghamshire Jan 04 *1,045 *57 16,699 Wilkinson family (99.7%)
28 CoatsThread manufacturer West London Dec 03 1,004 29 32,234 Guinness Peat Group (100%)
29 ClarksShoe retailer and wholesaler Somerset Jan 04 *943 *63 13,966 Clark family (81%)
30 First Quench RetailingOff-licence operator Hertfordshire Mar 03 926 4 14,167 Terra Firma (100%)
31 Vetco InternationalOilfield services provider Central London Dec 03 *919 *84 7,900 Candover, 3i, JP Morgan Partners, NIB Capital, management
32 European Metal RecyclingMetal recycler Warrington Dec 03 *907 *48 1,364 Sheppard family (96%)
33 Premier FoodsFood producer St Albans Dec 03 *890 *69 4,650 Hicks Muse Tate & Furst (93.6%)
34 BhsDepartment store operator Central London Mar 03 882 132 13,756 Philip Green (94%), Tom Hunter (5%)
35 JCBConstruction equipment manufacturer Staffordshire Dec 02 817 18 4,146 Bamford family (100%)
36 Sir Robert McAlpineConstruction contractor Hertfordshire Oct 02 794 -4 2,573 McAlpine family (100%)
37 bmiAirline operator Derby Dec 03 *772 *-10 4,503 Bishop, Balmforth & Wolfe (50%), Lufthansa (30%), SAS (20%)
38 EnergisTelecoms and internet provider Central London Mar 04 *745 *125 1,600 Consortium of 16 financial institutions, management
39 The Miller GroupHousebuilder & construction services Edinburgh Dec 03 *743 *57 1,400 Miller family (94%), employees (6%)
40 Bestway HoldingsCash & carry wholesaler West London Jun 03 *719 *26 1,626 Pervez family (61%), management (39%)
41 Baxi GroupHeating systems manufacturer Derby Dec 03 *705 *70 5,638 BC Partners (82%), Electra (10%), management (8%)
42 New LookFashion retailer Central London Mar 04 *696 *87 12,166 Permira, Apax Partners, Tom Singh, management, Quillian Investments
43 Lucite InternationalPlastics maker Southampton Dec 03 *694 *69 1,995 Charterhouse Capital Partners (78%)
44 General Healthcare GroupPrivate healthcare provider Central London Dec 03 *666 *111 10,501 BC Partners (90%), management (10%)
45 L BatleyFood wholesaler Huddersfield May 03 †650 †6 2,369 Batley family (100%)
46 Martin McCollConvenience store operator Essex Nov 03 *635 *19 10,401 Institutions including Electra, HSBC, L&G Ventures
47 Bourne LeisureCaravan park operator Hertfordshire Dec 02 624 74 10,926 Peter Harris (17.8%)
48 Shepherd GroupBuilder, manufacturer and developer York Jun 03 605 14 3,727 Shepherd family (100%)
49 Le Meridien Hotels & ResortsHotel operator Central London Jun 03 *591 *72 10,333 Terra Firma
50 Bristol Street GroupCar dealer Worcestershire Dec 03 *586 *7 1,834 Directors (84%), other management (16%)
51 WatesConstruction contractor Surrey Dec 03 *581 *13 1,601 Wates family (100%)
52 Ryland GroupCar dealer West Midlands Dec 02 568 7 1,680 Peter Whale and family (60%), ITC (40%)
53 Virgin Rail GroupTrain operator Central London Mar 03 556 -12 4,372 Virgin Investments (51%) and Stagecoach (49%)
54 Welcome BreakMotorway services operator Milton Keynes Sep 02 548 3 4,802 Investcorp (100%)
55 AF Blakemore & SonFood distributor West Midlands Apr 03 542 8 4,415 Peter Blakemore and family (70%)
56 Harrods GroupDepartment store operator Central London Feb 03 541 14 4,657 Mohamed al-Fayed (100%)
57 EWS RailwayRail freight operator Central London Mar 03 527 63 6,191 Canadian National (42%), Goldman Sachs, Fay Richwhite, Berkshire Group
58 ASCOOil and gas services provider Aberdeen Mar 03 524 2 1,621 3i (62%), Wood Group (31%) and management (7%)
59 CPL IndustriesSolid fuels supplier Chesterfield Dec 02 506 8 1,620 Legal & General Ventures, management
60 Food Brokers
61 Marshall GroupConglomerate Cambridge Dec 02 490 0n/a 3,352 Michael Marshall and family trusts (51%)
62 Spirit GroupPub operator Burton on Trent Dec 02 †489 †104 16,447 Texas Pacific, Blackstone Group, CVC, Merrill Lynch PE, management
63 PolestarContract printer Dunstable Aug 03 489 23 5,430 Investcorp (95%), institutions (5%)
64 Bowmer & KirklandConstruction contractor Derbyshire Sep 03 487 19 1,379 Kirkland family and family trusts (100%)
65 River IslandFashion retailer West London Aug 03 477 58 9,396 Bernard Lewis and family
66 Mott MacDonaldManagement and engineering consultancy Croydon Dec 02 469 12 6,858 Employees (50%), trust (45%), Connell Wagner (5%)
67 TrailfindersTravel organiser West London Dec 03 *468 *7 1,025 Mike Gooley and family (100%)
68 TravelexForeign exchange operator Central London Feb 04 466 6 5,112 Lloyd Dorfman (63%), 3i (32.6%)
69 Gala GroupBingo and casino operator Nottingham Dec 03 *462 *105 9,748 Candover (41%), Cinven (41%), management (15%)
70 Virgin MobileMobile telecoms provider West London Sep 03 458 67 1,294 Virgin Group (100%)
71 Dunlop Standard Aerospace GroupAerospace equipment maker Coventry Dec 03 *457 *58 3,962 Doughty Hanson (90%)
72 SelfridgesDepartment store operator Central London Dec 03 445 41 2,260 Wittington Investments (100%)
73 Southern WaterWater services provider West Sussex Feb 03 437 181 2,015 Royal Bank of Scotland, Veolia and others
74 OCS GroupFacilities services provider Gatwick Mar 03 436 15 42,302 Goodliffe family (100%)
75 Seton House GroupSpecialist engineer Surrey Mar 03 *432 *5 4,043 Royal Bank Equity Finance (85%), management (15%)
76 Formula OneMotor racing administrator Central London Dec 03 428 179 469 SLEC Holdings (100%)
77 JCT600Car dealer Bradford Dec 02 *415 *13 1,053 Tordoff family and family trusts (100%)
78 DewhirstClothing manufacturer East Yorkshire Dec 03 407 23 19,603 Management
79 NG BaileyMechanical, electrical contractor West Yorkshire Jan 03 407 5 4,153 Bailey family (100%)
80 Greenhous GroupCar dealer Shrewsbury Feb 03 *406 *5 617 Management
81 BOCM PAULS (Agricola Group)Animal feed manufacturer Ipswich Dec 03 405 8 1,143 Management and staff (89%), Electra (8%)
82 FosecoSteel industry consultancy Tamworth Dec 02 *404 *30 3,109 Cinven, management
83 Bloor InvestmentsBuilder and motorcycle maker Derbyshire Dec 03 403 50 1,689 John Bloor (100%)
84 Reed ExecutiveRecruitment, HR consultancy Central London Jun 03 402 8 2,635 Reed family (99%)
85 Bernard Matthews FarmsFood producer Norwich Dec 02 401 44 6,800 Bernard Matthews and family (100%)
86 Sports World InternationalSports goods retailer Bedfordshire Apr 02 398 46 5,049 Mike Ashley (100%)
87 ArupDesign and engineering consultancy Central London Mar 03 395 8 6,326 Arup employees through three employee trusts
88 Laurel PubsManaged pub operator Luton Mar 03 394 73 9,750 Morgan Grenfell (82%)
89 BetfredBookmaker Warrington Mar 03 387 2 1,027 Fred and Peter Done and family (100%)
90 CostcutterConvenience store operator York Apr 03 383 4 733 Colin Graves and family (100%)
91 Perkins FoodsFood producer Dartford Dec 03 *382 *23 2,978 Investors led by ABN Amro (82%)
92 Pentland GroupBrand manager and retailer Central London Dec 02 380 2 1,931 Stephen Rubin and family (100%)
93 Ineos ChlorChlorine chemicals maker Cheshire Dec 03 *373 *10 1,765 Management (85%), ICI (15%)
94 Northern & Shell Media GroupPublisher & broadcaster Central London Dec 03 *371 n/a 1,114 Richard Desmond (100%)
95 TravelodgeBudget hotel operator Oxfordshire Sep 02 *368 *105 7,823 Permira (100%)
96 Findus GroupFood producer Central London Dec 03 365 15 3,272 CapVest and management
97 Guardian Media GroupMultimedia publisher Central London Mar 03 356 -2 3,170 Scott Trust (100%)
98 WeetabixBreakfast cereal maker Northamptonshire Aug 02 †355 †39 2,813 Hicks Muse Tate & Furst (100%)
99 ZavviEntertainment retailer West London Feb 03 353 -8 3,104 Virgin Group (100%)
100 Kwik-Fit GBGarage services provider Edinburgh Dec 02 353 19 4,303 CVC Capital Partners (81%), Ford (19%)

* supplied by company   † annualised figure