Businesspeople gathered at York St John University to hear of who are some of the most successful firms in York and North Yorkshire.

The Top 100 from the York Press, York St John University, and Make it York has now been extended to include North Yorkshire, to account for the new combined authority covering the region.

LocaliQ sales director Steve Lowe praised York St John University as “fantastic allies” of the York Press for crunching the numbers to calculate who should be in the Top 100, as well as being headline sponsor of the 2024 York Press Local iQ Business Awards.

After a short video featuring Chris Pegg of City Cruises, Prof Karen Bryan, the university vice-chancellor, described the Top 100 as a celebration of the best businesses in the region.


York St John and its business school has a role in supporting business growth and development, as well as fostering the next generation of business leaders.

The university offers everything from short courses to business degree apprenticeships. Its Enterprise Centre also offers office space and support for micro-businesses, she added.

Dr Brendan Paddison, interim dean of York Business School, said the Top 100 aims to stimulate debate and become a much-anticipated feature in the business sector.

The rankings were judged on turnover, profit, growth rate and staff headcount, using filed information from companies headquartered in York and North Yorkshire.

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Steve Lowe spoke of the categories of the Top 100, such as Top SMEs, or Professional Services, which is read by hundreds of thousands of people.

A fast-growing business that was judged ‘the one to watch’ was Skipton Business Finance Ltd.

Part of the Skipton Building Society, the division reported record profits in 2022 of £9.6million, up 32% on the previous year.

The one with the highest growth was Authentix of York Ltd.

The provider of authentication solutions reported turnover growth of 71% to £29.7million.

And the Number One was renewable energy company Drax Group PLC.

The Top 100 notes the Selby-based giant saw turnover grew 53% in 2022 to £7,775million.

The Top Manufacturer was Pocklington fertiliser manufacturer Yara UK.

In the Professional, Financial, Scientific and Technical Services sector, the winner was flood consultancy company JBA of Broughton Hall, near Skipton.

York-based Pavers Ltd was winner of the Retail, Accommodation and Food Services category.

Top SME went to Glandia Performance Nutrition of Harrogate.

After the awards were presented, Cheri Federico of Aesthetica spoke of how she created the magazine over 20 years ago, which grew to also offer a film festival and an arts prize.

The New York-born businesswoman also spoke of the Reignite campaign to boost media arts in recognition of York’s UNESCO media arts status.

Cherie also spoke of the importance of reinvention and shared her business tips for success.

She concluded: “Anything is possible, if you say ‘yes.’”