Britain’s biggest private companies recognised

20th November 2020

Senior directors from 40 of Britain’s biggest private companies took part in the second of our two Sunday Times HSBC Top Track 100 virtual networking interactive events, co-hosted by our sponsors, HSBC and Linklaters. Hostage negotiator Suzanne Williams was guest speaker.

The annual Sunday Times HSBC Top Track 100 networking events bring together senior directors from the UK’s 100 biggest private companies by sales, and league table alumni. Pre-Covid-19, companies on the 2020 league table grew their sales by 8% to a combined £237bn, with ebitda profits up 7% to £28.2bn.


Guests and sponsor welcome

54 guests from 40 companies, with combined sales of £120bn, profits of £13bn, and employing 450,000 people, attended. They included senior directors from Ineos, Neptune Energy, Specsavers, THG and Wates.

The event was co-hosted by senior representatives from our Top Track 100 title sponsor HSBC, and main sponsor Linklaters.

Jonathan Graham, Head of Large Corporates at HSBC UK, welcomed guests and shared his thoughts on the economic recovery:

Corporate Britain is starting to breathe again. What we are now seeing is customers like you being able to plan ahead as the economies you operate in start to open up.”

Sarah Wiggins, senior corporate partner at Linklaters, highlighted how Britain’s biggest private companies have adapted to what she described as the tsunami of the pandemic.

You really do show what can be achieved in Britain by entrepreneurs and British businesses who remain agile, innovative, bold and resilient, in what has turned out to be a really challenging year,” she said.

Keynote speech

Guests heard from Suzanne Williams, who spent three decades as a police officer at Scotland Yard, latterly becoming the first woman to lead its hostage crisis unit. She outlined her approach to high-pressure negotiations:

Often good communication is actually about saying nothing at all – you need to listen first, I mean truly listen. I always joke there’s a reason God gave us two ears and one mouth. It’s proactive listening, it can be learned, and it’s definitely a skill.”

League table award certificate

All companies on this year’s Top Track 100 received a league table award certificate to recognise their success.

These were shipped with a goodie box, with gifts from our sponsors and Top Track 100 stalwart Harrods, which kindly provided champagne and wine.

Our sponsors

Recognising the achievements of all these companies is made possible by support from our sponsors HSBC, our title sponsor for a seventh year, and Linklaters, our main sponsor, also in its seventh year of sponsorship.

More information on the league table

The 2021 Sunday Times Top Track 100 league table supplement will be published with The Sunday Times on 4 July, with directors’ networking events in October and November.

For opportunities to meet and build relationships with the senior directors of Britain’s biggest private companies, see sponsorship opportunities for Top Track 100.

For more information about the league table and events programme, see:

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