Northern Ireland's Top 100 businesses see profits surge by 46 per cent

Ulster Business editor John Mulgrew (centre) with Peter Stafford, partner at A&L Goodbody, and Justin Coleman, director at Moy Park

THE north's biggest companies have seen profits soaring by almost 50 per cent year-on-year, according to findings for a business publication.

The Ulster Business Top 100 list for 2022 shows combined pre-tax profits among the region's biggest firms, rose by 46 per cent to £1.367 billion - up from £936.8 million based on previous accounts.

And combined sales among the Top 100 rose by just 2.6 per cent during the same period, from £26.1bn to £27.7bn. That is down from the 10.4 per cent growth recorded a year previous.

The list has showcased the performance of the biggest firms from right across Northern Ireland, ranked by turnover, for more than 30 years.

It uses data from Dun & Bradstreet and the latest accounts filed to Companies House in the UK, with data including more recent filings for many firms covering the period since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Of the 100 companies making the list, just eight declared losses for their last financial year.

Moy Park has topped the list once again, posting turnover of £1.46bn and pre-tax profits of £82.7m for its latest filed accounts, followed by W&R Barnett with turnover of £1.27bn and pre-tax profits of £51.3m.

There are also a host of new companies making this year's list, with around a dozen businesses joining in 2022.

That includes the likes of T.W. Scott & Sons (Fuels) Ltd and Budget Energy Ltd, which have made their way up from the magazine's Next 200 list, which follows on from the Top 100 and charts the success of leading SMEs.

And other firms making the list this year include Fourds Ltd, the Magherafelt-based business which counts Bloc Blinds among some of its arms.

Ulster Business has partnered with corporate law firm A&L Goodbody for the last seven years with the Top 100.

“While the last two years have been some of the trickiest periods for business and wider society in a generation, the performance of many of our biggest businesses is testament to the hard work which goes in to running a Top 100 company,” said John Mulgrew, editor of Ulster Business.

“Although the next 12 months will present yet another set of challenges for companies amid double-digit inflation and energy costs, this year's Top 100 is a clear indication of the resilience and buoyancy of our largest firms.”

Michael Neill, head of Belfast office at A&L Goodbody (ALG), said: “Many businesses are aware of the persisting challenges posed by Covid-19, Brexit and an uncertain domestic and global economy.

“The Top 100 continue to take every measure to mitigate against those. Our heightened focus at ALG is on the future and on supporting our clients in realising every opportunity for sustainable recovery and growth, alongside navigating continued market challenges.”