The 100 fastest-growing tech firms in the North were honoured in the prestigious Northern Tech Awards ceremony in Edinburgh last night.

The list featured high-growth achievers from across the North of England and Scotland.

The prize for the fastest-growing company went to Manchester-based In Touch Networks, which has transformed the way businesses recruit, followed in second place by Harrogate firm Chameleon Technology.

Evolution Funding was the fastest-growing large company i.e. those with revenues over £10m.

Performance Horizon was awarded the ‘Overall Judges’ Award, recognising the business’ key role in driving innovation both in the Northern region and on a global scale. Founded in Newcastle in 2010, it now operates across four different continents.

It was a golden night for three Manchester tech entrepreneurs as Connex One MD Nicholas Mealey, Music Magpie CEO Steve Oliver and Purple CEO Gavin Wheeldon were honoured.

The Northern Tech Awards are now in their fifth year and Hugh Campbell, managing partner of GP Bullhound, struck an upbeat note about the health of the UK’s tech sector in 2017.

He said: “The UK technology sector continued to demonstrate its prominence across Europe, securing over $5.4 billion in VC funding – more than twice its nearest rivals in Germany and France.”

Data compiled by the technology advisory and investment firm showed that the 100 companies generated £4.5bn in 2017, more than double the 2016 figure of £1.9bn.

The speaker was Rob Jones, co-founder of tech unicorn FanDuel and co- founder of start-up Flick.

The award winners were selected by a panel of high-profile judges. Sherry Coutu CBE, Chair of Founders4Schools, Jacqui Ferguson, director of Wood Group, and Melinda Matthews, chief executive of the Edinburgh-based digital skills academy CodeClan, were part of this year’s new additions, sitting on the panel alongside longstanding judges such as David Rowan, founding editor of Wired UK.

Three of the five fastest-growing technology companies in the North were eCommerce specialists, while companies delivering IT services made up almost one third of the top 100 list. There were 22 enterprise software companies in the rankings, an increase from 19 companies last year. Of the top 100, 29 were based in Manchester, with Leeds boasting the next biggest number of top 100 businesses with 13.

2018 Northern Tech Awards Winners:

    • The Region’s Top Northern Star from the competition run by Tech North: BigChange, Leeds
    • Fastest Growing Company of the Year (with revenues under £10m): In Touch Networks, Manchester
    • Fastest Growing Larger Company of the Year (with revenues over £10m): Evolution Funding, Chesterfield
    • Judges’ Innovation Award: Peak AI, Manchester
    • Judges’ Award for International Success: Purple, Manchester 
    • Judges’ Leadership Award: Sykes Cottages, Chester
    • Tech4Good Award: Virtual College, Ilkley
    • Judges’ Young Entrepreneur Award: Nicholas Mealey, Connex One, Manchester
    • Judges’ Entrepreneur Award: Steve Oliver, MusicMagpie, Manchester 
    • Overall Judges’ Award: Performance Horizon, Newcastle

The fast-growth 100:

  • In Touch Networks, Manchester
  • Chameleon Technology, Harrogate
  • The Car Buying Group, Wakefield
  • Fruugo.com, Ulverston
  • The Lead Agency, Liverpool
  • Social Chain, Manchester
  • Origin Broadband, Rotherham
  • Giacom, Hessle
  • Hedgehog Lab, Newcastle
  • Matillion, Altrincham
  • BigChange, Leeds
  • Outplay Entertainment, Dundee
  • Hyperdrive Innovation, Sunderland
  • Castlight Financial, Glasgow
  • AccessPay, Manchester
  • TVSquared, Edinburgh
  • Resulting, Manchester
  • Redu Group, County Durham
  • LADBible, Manchester
  • Looking4.com, Leeds
  • CurrentBody.com
  • Cloud Technology
  • Peak
  • ZeroLight
  • Evolution Funding
  • Cubic Motion
  • IDHL Group
  • Performance Horizon
  • Godel Technologies
  • Shield Safety Group
  • Ecometrica
  • ProofID
  • Converge Technology
  • Trak Global Group
  • Quint Group
  • Planixs GRP
  • InVentry
  • The Hut Group
  • Volcanic
  • Sky Betting & Gaming
  • M24Seven
  • Uinsure
  • rradar
  • Opencast Software
  • Purple WiFi
  • Evoke Creative
  • Bede Gaming
  • E-days Absence
  • Connex One
  • Sykes Cottages
  • Mobysoft
  • ContractHireAnd
  • Azzure IT
  • The Floow
  • r2c Online
  • MTech IT Solutions
  • Better2Know
  • Aspire Technology
  • Preasto Consulting
  • Music Magpie
  • Parcel2Go
  • ProVu Communications
  • Virtual College
  • Ripe Thinking
  • Digital Next
  • Airangel
  • Sonocent
  • Mando
  • Lead Tech
  • Wax Digital
  • Uniform
  • Waterstons
  • Mobica
  • Fire sh Software
  • Visualsoft
  • Vaioni Group
  • Parallax
  • Caboodle Technology
  • Elementary Technology
  • ANS
  • OpenCRM
  • UKFast
  • Zuto
  • NGC Network Services
  • Intechnica
  • Blue Logic
  • Hiring Hub
  • Apadmi
  • The Webinar Vet
  • Radius Payment
  • TribePad
  • Nexus Vehicle Rental
  • Maginus
  • TPP
  • SITS Group
  • Elite Group
  • eBECS
  • Everything Different
  • CascadeGo
  • Degree 53