Danske Bank gets top spot in Belfast Telegraph's Top 100 Companies
Danske Bank has been named the number one company in Northern Ireland in the Belfast Telegraph Top 100 Companies in association with Arthur Cox, free with the newspaper today.
The Belfast Telegraph also relaunches its Business Telegraph today, with a bigger, better read full of insights into business and business people.
The eagerly-awaited Top 100 Companies ranks businesses in order of pre-tax profits for the first time - with the result that Dankse tops the pile, with its £117.8m pre-tax profits haul.
Chief executive Gerry Mallon said the business was delighted, and attributed its success to an improving economy and housing market, which led to a dramatic reduction in its bad debts. Mr Mallon said: "We are of course delighted to be named number one in the listing of this year's Belfast Telegraph Top 100 companies."
The list covers Northern Ireland registered companies which are in international ownership - as well as home-grown success stories which have remained independent. An array of successful family-run companies are high-up in the list, with Moy Park at No 6, Belfast Harbour at No 9 and medical devices business Eakin Holdings at No 10.
The biggest profit increases were in the results of family-run oil company Nicholl Oils in Greysteel, Co Londonderry, and in retailer Chain Reaction Cycles in Ballyclare, Co Antrim.
Nicholl Oils pre-tax profits grew from £6.8m in the year to May 2013 to £30.8m this year. Profits at Chain Reaction Cycles, run by the Watson family, grew from £861,000 to £4.83m.
Writing in the Top 100, Adrian Doran, head of corporate banking at Barclays Northern Ireland, said ranking companies by pre-tax profits was informative - previously companies were ranked in order of employment numbers.
"In my opinion it's an important and symbolic change, because without profits there are no resources for continued investment in research and development, plant and machinery or, most importantly, people," he said.
Top 100 Companies is available with today's Belfast Telegraph