Wilton Engineering Services wins Ward Hadaway Fastest 50 2010 | 13 October 10

WILTON Engineering Services scored a notable hat-trick at the 2010 Ward Hadaway Fastest 50 Awards.

Fastest 50 2010 winner Wilton Engineering Services

Double victory – Bill Scott of Wilton Engineering Services (third from left) with the awards for fastest growing large business and overall fastest growing business alongside (left to right) Colin Hewitt from Ward Hadaway, Business Secretary Vince Cable MP and Journal editor Brian Aitken.

For not only did the Middlesbrough-based offshore and petrochemical industry specialist win the awards for fastest growing North-East company for 2010 and the region’s fastest growing large company for 2010, its specialist sector was name-checked by the event’s special guest, Business Secretary Vince Cable MP, as one of the key areas to lead the region’s economic revival.

The awards, organised and sponsored by law firm Ward Hadaway, cap a memorable year for Wilton Engineering Services, which provides bespoke fabrications and associated services to the subsea, marine, offshore and renewable energy industries.

In June this year, the company, part of the Wilton Group, secured a £16m investment from Barclays Private Equity for a significant minority stake in the business.

It is planning to use the investment to acquire other companies as well as grow organically by expanding market share in the UK and overseas.

Bill Scott, chief executive officer, said: “We didn’t expect to win these awards, but they just show that the effort everyone has put in over the years has really paid off and being recognised as the fastest growing company in the North-East is fantastic.

“I think this success is due to the strategic planning and hard work from everyone and the acquisitions we have made over the last three years have also helped.

“We have had a recent step change having taken on Barclays Private Equity as an equity partner and that is with the full intention of some significant further growth over the next three to five years.”

Other winners at the Ward Hadaway Fastest 50 Awards were Durham-based UK Independent Medical, which provides independent medical evidence to the insurance and legal industries in England and Wales and won the fastest growing medium business award, and cable installation specialist ICS Integrated Cable Systems, which has helped to fit out landmark buildings across the UK and was named fastest growing small business of 2010.

The winning companies were revealed before an audience of 150 business leaders at the Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art in Gateshead.

Business Secretary Vince Cable MP

Dr Vince Cable MP, Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills (above), was the keynote speaker at the prestigious event.

Dr Cable spoke of his delight at addressing what he described as “a very positive occasion” and said that companies such as those in the Ward Hadaway Fastest 50 were crucial to the success of the North East economy.

He said: “What will determine whether the region succeeds or fails economically are these people here.

“The successful growth of private businesses is what is going to create the wealth of the future.

“We need you as we have to grow out of this economic mess.”

Dr Cable said there was a “big role” for sectors such as high value manufacturing, the offshore industry, microelectronics, automotive and renewables to play in the region’s economic growth.

He said the North-East was already performing well in a range of different industries and added: “I want to add my thanks and congratulations to those who are part of that success story.”

Journal Editor Brian Aitken

Brian Aitken, editor of The Journal (above), introduced the awards, which reward profit-making privately-owned companies and organisations in the region which have shown the strongest sales growth over recent years.

He said: “Those of you who are here today because your company has made the list should feel especially proud – because you are working so successfully that you are prospering when others are finding the going so tough.”

The Fastest 50 is organised and sponsored by Ward Hadaway and supported by The Journal.

Colin Hewitt of Ward Hadaway

Colin Hewitt (above), head of commercial law at Ward Hadaway, said: “All the award winners and indeed every business in this year’s Fastest 50 deserve special plaudits for their achievements over what has been a really tough year.

“All those on the list have performed fantastically well in a challenging economic climate and we salute their achievements.

“They are shining examples of success which show that we in the North-East can compete not just on a national level but a global one too as we look to the private sector to rebalance the economy.

“It was clear from Dr Cable’s speech that this is something which is recognised in the highest Government circles – and so it should be.”

Fastest 50 2010 Award winners

Fastest growing small business: ICS Integrated Cable Systems Ltd, Billingham

Fastest growing medium business: UK Independent Medical Ltd, Durham

Fastest growing large business and overall winner: Wilton Engineering Services Ltd, Middlesbrough