This company’s managing director keeps a model of Del Boy’s yellow Reliant Robin van, from the TV series Only Fools and Horses on his desk to remind him of the humble origins of his retail empire. In 1980, Chris Dawson started selling watches and perfume at outdoor markets in Plymouth. Nine years later, he opened the first CDS superstore, branded The Range Home & Leisure. Today there are 41 stores across Britain, employing more than 2,500 staff and selling 65,000 products. Sales in 2009 reached £174.7m.

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Company details
Year2009
Rank212
CompanyThe Range
ActivityDiscount retailer
LocationPlymouth
Sales £m174.7
Operating profit £m10.9
Main shareholdersChris Dawson and family (85%), John Smyly (15%)
Staff2,291
Founded1989
Websitewww.therange.co.uk

If applicable:

* supplied by Company   † annualised figure   ‡  profit = ebitda