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2019 Greater Manchester Fastest 50 winners named by Ward Hadaway

Candour Logistics took home a double win at the Ward Hadaway Greater Manchester Fastest 50 Awards 2019.

The Warrington-based company won the awards for Fastest Growing Large Business and Overall Fastest Growing Business at the event, which recognises and celebrates the fastest growing privately-owned companies across Greater Manchester.

Candour Logistics is a company that offers logistics and freight-forwarding services worldwide for customers ranging from SMEs to PLCs. Established in 2014 by a group of logistics experts, it rose to the top of this year’s list of fast-growing businesses with an average turnover growth of 146%.

John Keary, Managing Director of Candour Logistics, said: “I’m stunned and completely over the moon to have won this award. This is a big accolade. The company is only four years old and it’s been a great journey with many sacrifices along the way, but things like this make it worthwhile.

“Our team are our biggest asset as we’re in the service industry and without them working hard and pulling together we wouldn’t be here today.

“To manage the growth we’ve had from zero to when our year four numbers are published, it’ll be plus £50 million. It’s been huge growth in a short period and to say that we’re now only at 25 staff and we reached up to £30 million with less than 10 staff, it’s amazing.

“I’m flying to Canada this Sunday to look at some international developments so hopefully our footprint will extend further outside the UK. That’s the next big thing on the horizon along with some developments in tech which will be more important going forward.”

Candour Logistics won the Fastest Growing Large Business Award – for companies with an annual turnover of more than £30m – ahead of Altrincham-based Inrix Holdings UK Ltd in second place and Manchester’s Neuven Solutions in third.

Candour Logistics was not the only winner at the awards, organised by Top 100 UK law firm Ward Hadaway and supported by the University of Salford Business School and Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce.

Godel Technologies won the award for the Fastest Growing Medium-Sized Business, for companies with an annual turnover of between £10m and £30m.

The software development company, which is based in Manchester, made it a hat-trick of appearances in the Fastest 50 list after finishing 19th in 2017 and 10th last year. Employing over 800 people at its offices in Manchester, London and Belarus, it has worked with companies including, Experian and The Trainline.

Anastassia Davidzenka, VP Professional Services at Godel Technologies, said: “It’s been absolutely amazing. It’s a great thing for us to be recognised as one of the fastest-growing businesses and just knowing how much we have contributed to the overall growth of the region is very impressive and it’s great to be part of it.

“It’s our people’s hard work that counts and I’m sure they will be very excited and proud with the news of the Fastest 50 win like we are. Being based in the North West is very important for us. We pride ourselves on being open and honest and those things are true of this region as well. There is a core of technology companies here and there is a large pool of talent for us to recruit from, so being here has been key to our growth.”

Second place went to Knutsford-based cosmetics company Amelia Knight and third to one of last year’s winners, Chrystal Consulting.

Stockport-based Antala Ltd, are a chemical solutions provider and technical partner for world leading brands. With over 20 years of experience they have worked with manufacturers in Automotive, Transportation and Renewable Energy to deliver results.

The company was established in 1999, with Antala Ltd being founded in 2012. Antala Ltd was named the Fastest Growing Small Business in Greater Manchester for companies with an annual turnover of between £1m and £10m.

Darren Farthing, Operations Manager at Antala Ltd, said: “This win was very unexpected I have to say. It’s a very good company that we work for and I’ve worked for some unique companies in the past, but this one is a family business, that is family-run with family values which is a big difference for me and I think it’s well worth the award. Our people are absolutely over the moon – they are so happy with this award win.

“We’ve got a move in the pipeline so we’re planning for more growth this year, next year and the year after with bigger premises.”

Second place in the Fastest Growing Small Business category went to CTS, a private cloud service tailored for law firms, while Manchester’s Castlefield took third. They both appear in the Greater Manchester Fastest 50 list for the third year in a row.

The winning companies and runners-up were revealed before an audience of more than 200 people, including Fastest 50 company representatives and Greater Manchester business leaders, at the Royal Exchange Theatre on Friday, May 10th.

Mohamed Isap, CEO of IN4.0 Group was the special guest at the event and gave the keynote speech.

In his speech, Mo spoke about the challenge of running a business and how success can sometimes end in failure if you stop innovating.

He said: “Success can lead us to stop inviting challenge and get ahead of the crisis, we fall into the trap of continuing to exploit what has worked and stop innovating to future-proof our business.

He expressed how much the city has changed and how far it has come in recent years.

He acknowledged the hard work and determination of companies in this year’s Greater Manchester Fastest 50 list, before moving on to talk about keeping the pioneering and entrepreneurial mindset and retaining the passion that has brought you the success.

He said he was delighted to have been asked to give this year’s keynote speech at the event.

On IN4.0 Group, Mo talked about some of the businesses he has helped grow and also what that means for Greater Manchester business community as a whole.

He said: “We are in the business of helping our clients upskill their talent and adopt technology that will ensure continued success. Greater Manchester has created on the world’s best eco systems for businesses to start and scale.”

Mo ended his speech by inviting businesses in the room to talk to him after his speech.

Paul Johnson, Executive Partner of Ward Hadaway’s Manchester office introduced the awards, which reward profit-making privately owned companies and organisations in the region which have shown the strongest growth over recent years.

Chris Fletcher from Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce then talked about their involvement in the awards for the first time. He also recognised the talent in the room and how it signifies that in these uncertain times when everyone’s a bit doom and gloom, it’s still great to celebrate and reward growth.

He said: “We have been thrilled and delighted to have been involved as a partner in this year’s awards. Being the largest Chamber of Commerce in the UK, we come across a huge number of businesses that day-in day-out are performing at the very peak of what they are capable of doing, keeping people employed, creating opportunities for local people  and making the money that can be used to invest in the future. Quite often, the vast majority go unnoticed – just focussed on what they do best. What they see simply as the “day job” can sometimes be seen as extraordinary in other people’s eyes.

“That’s why the Fastest 50 awards are so important and matter so much and it’s a perfect way to celebrate, promote and reward the fantastic business community we are all part of.”

Janice Allan from the University of Salford’s Business School spoke about what lessons could be learnt by business from the list.

She said: “We’re delighted to join with Ward Hadaway and the Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce to recognise and celebrate the Fastest 50 of 2019. In line with our institutional commitment to work hand-in-hand with industry, especially in our region, we will now attempt to identify the trends that link these successful businesses and see what we can learn from their growth.

“This is just one of the ways in which we want to bring together our research expertise and your business expertise to co-create new knowledge and understanding to benefit our region.”


Please note that this briefing is designed to be informative, not advisory and represents our understanding of English law and practice as at the date indicated. We would always recommend that you should seek specific guidance on any particular legal issue.

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