Ambitious Business Leaders
The LDC Top 50 for 2021
This year’s Top 50 is a tale of resilience, determination, strategic excellence and export success. These founders and chief executives have overcome extraordinary challenges in the past 18 months to keep growing their organisations. They will all have a vital part to play in the UK’s economic recovery.
Leaders of the Pack
Mid-Market goes for growth
These companies have experienced extraordinary growth over recent years, despite what has been a challenging 12 months for many. Between them, the Top 50 grew revenues by an average of 179 per cent across the past three years.
Export experts do a great deal
Some leaders have exporting baked into their DNA, and nowhere is this more apparent than among our Top 50. It isn’t always plain sailing, but these UK business leaders are growing revenues by boosting export operations and building brands abroad.
Waste not, want not firms go full circle
Trailblazing entrepreneurs are carving a space in the circular economy and addressing shortages in the skills of the future. Many of the Top 50 have the entrepreneurial grit that help solve the pressing challenges we face today.
Ahead of the Covid curve
The pandemic forced us to dramatically change how we do business, but The Top 50 Most Ambitious Business Leaders have tackled the Covid challenge with remarkable reserves of imagination and innovative verve.
Being named as the UK’s Most Ambitious Business Leader in 2021 was really uplifting, it was also amazing for Oddbox to receive the recognition it has had as a force for good.”
Emilie Vanpoperinghe Founder, Oddbox
The Most Ambitious Business Leader
Emilie founded Oddbox with her husband in 2016 to tackle global food waste and since then the company has grown to deliver more than three million boxes of surplus, unwanted or misshapen fruit and vegetables to customers across the UK. The judges commended Emilie for not only growing a business that is creating jobs and generating economic value, having grown 40-fold since 2018, but for rapidly building a brand that is committed to tackling food waste - one of the biggest contributors to climate change.Read more
The People First Award
CEO, eQuality Solutions
Andy wowed the judges with his unwavering commitment to helping students with disabilities and learning difficulties to have a fulfilling education at university. His firm uses technology to create personalised learning solutions. The judges praised his ambition to continue to remove barriers in education, employment and life.
The International Ambition Award
Chris launched Transmission’s first international office in in San Francisco in 2019. Just three years later, the global marketing agency has 12 offices around the world, helping clients such as Microsoft and HP to sell in complex markets, such as China and India.
The Digital Disruptor Award
Founder, Trinny London
Former TV presenter Trinny spotted an opportunity to create an inclusive make-up brand, Trinny London. The brand which has become a global e-commerce business in just four years. Trinny’s army of online advocates, “the Trinny Tribe”, have helped the brand to expand to 180 countries.
The Green Disruptor Award
Founder, Circular Computing
Rod is the founder of Circular Computing, which takes unwanted laptops and turns them into new ones that offer 97 per cent of the performance of the original for a fraction of the carbon footprint. He is creating a sustainable solution to the world’s growing e-waste problem and now has the capacity to make 10,000 laptops a month.
The Innovation Award
Praveen is a coder-turned-entrepreneur and his software consultancy has created a community of freelancers to learn from each other. He is hoping to employ 1,000 people within three years and has created a culture of continual improvement, which means his team always has the most relevant technical skills.
The Sustainable Impact Award
Mart and Rob Drake-Knight
Mart and Rob are creating a circular economy for T-shirts. Every item is returned at the end of its life and turned into a new top. Teemill’s factory also uses renewable energy and T-shirts are printed to order, meaning zero waste.
Highly Commended – Ones to Watch
Dr Eric is on a mission to improve the standard of cancer care by providing patients with more accurate, convenient and less expensive solutions for diagnosis and treatment. In just three years, Cambridge-based Endomag has tripled the number of patients it provides with more precise cancer care, from 40,000 to more than 130,000.
Meet The LDC Top 50
The LDC Top 50 Most Ambitious Leaders is dedicated to celebrating these entrepreneurial individuals, many of whom rarely get the plaudits they deserve. This year, they hail from across the UK, from Portsmouth to Dundee and Leeds to the Isle of Wight. Together, they employ 9,500 people and generate annual revenues of £1.2bn. Find out more about our 2021 programme and meet The LDC Top 50 and Ones to Watch.Watch the video
Highly Commended – Ones to Watch
CEO, Production Park
CEO & Founder, inurface Media
MD, Mixtio Labs
CEO, Commando Joe's
MD, Boiler Plan
Founder & CEO, EO Charging
CEO, Ensafe Consultants
MD, CCube Solutions
MD, Visual Method
Marcus Mollinga & Jack Morrison
Co-founders & Directors, YourZooki
MD, Baked In
CEO, Genba Digital
CEO & Founder, The Simple Series
Dr Megan Rossi & Jon Walsh
Co-founder & Product Director and Co-founder & CEO, Bio&Me
Director, So-Media Productions
Co-founder, Fantastic Services
CEO, Inovus Medical
CEO, DCSL GuideSmiths
Group MD, Thorpe Interior Group
CEO, Digital Ethos
CEO & Partner, Born Social
CEO, Mason Advisory
Founder & CTO, TransformologyXR