Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 17 April 2014

Ups and downs of business in 2012 mirrored in list

The list of the Top 100, from one year to another, is never static. On average, every year, about six businesses leave and enter the list. Departures happen for a variety of reasons: sometimes a business has downsized and falls outside the criteria for inclusion; sometimes a business merges or is taken over and, unhappily, sometimes there are closures.

This year there have been four departures from the list. Two of the four might be described as hit hard by the recession. Two others were classified as falling below the new threshold for inclusion. Four new names have taken their places.

Over the last decade, the composition of the Top 100 companies has changed dramatically. In total over 50% of the names in this 2013 list were not included (in this form) in 2000.

During 2012, the economic environment was deteriorating. Fears of recurring recession were prominent. Perhaps surprisingly, only two businesses have left the list because of closure or a dramatic collapse of activity: Patton and Rotary. This year, the number of names disappearing and being replaced is slightly lower than the normal long-term average: four names have been replaced.

In 2011, the pain of recession was growing although the businesses which entered the list in 2010 were still trading. The new arrivals in 2012 are also still in place. Now, in early 2013, there are four more new entries.