Deloitte today released their “UK Technology Fast50” Report.  It lists the fifty fastest growing technology companies in the UK.
“The 2008 Deloitte Fast 50 results bear testament to the vibrancy of the UK technology sector, even in challenging market conditions. Overall growth rates have in fact increased in the last 12 months – the average growth rate of the 2008 Fast 50 was 2161 per cent, up from (2318 per cent).

Last year’s winner would have been ranked third this year. The average revenue figures for the 2008 Deloitte Fast 50 are £17.3m.

David Halstead, Partner TMT practice and Fast 50 Chairman, Deloitte said: “The 2008 Deloitte Fast 50 provides a fascinating view of the evolving structure of the UK’s tech sector, with software and internet businesses making up the bulk of the fastest growing companies. While their products and services are at the extreme cutting edge of global technology, it is important to note that it is not just technology that makes these companies leaders in their sectors – it is about the quality of the people and their Intellectual Property that makes these businesses the success stories they are.”

To qualify for the Deloitte Technology Fast 50 award, companies must have met stringent criteria: to have been in business for over five years, be UK-owned, to have operating revenues of at least £34,000, to own proprietary technology or proprietary intellectual property that contributes to a significant portion of the company’s operating revenues; or to devote a significant proportion of revenues to the research and development of technology.”

Top of the list is Thunderhead Limited, a software vendor with a staggering growth of 28,558% in the last year.  Ubisense also experienced five figure growth, at 15324%.  What they do, to quote their website is “Ubisense precise real-time location solutions drive process improvement, delivering maximum ROI to our industrial customers by providing 15cm 3D accuracy, real-time sub-second response and proven robustness in challenging manufacturing environments across standard networks.”

What I find most interesting is the absences. Despite being a technology listing, open to any kind of technology manufacturer, there are no representatives from the renewable energy sector.
On a quick skim, there are only really five companies that actually ‘make’ anything physical (Ubisense, picoChip, CSR plc, Sensornet Ltd, Xtreme Business Solutions Ltd ).*  I wonder when the government will pass the legislation required for a renewable sector company to make this list, it can surely only be a matter of time.

Miliband has been making the right noises about feed in tariffs, and potentially reducing the obstructions to offshore wind-farms. Will 2009 be the year? To exclude software from making something physical is a little glib, I admit.

1Thunderhead LimitedSoftware vendor28558%26UK Digital Cameras LtdOnline retailer970%
2UbisenseReal-time location systems15324%27Dezrez Services LimitedSoftware965%
3picoChipSemiconductors4483%28UKFastInternet hosting894%
4OB10B2B invoicing network3488%29Sponge LtdMobile marketing agency854%
5Bigmouthmedia LtdDigital marketing agency3357%30Rocela LimitedSoftware844%
6TH_NK LtdDigital agency3137%31O-bitTelecom LimitedTelecommunications829%
7Broadbean TechnologyAdvertising distribution services2882%32MemsetInternet hosting823%
8Content and Code LtdSoftware2855%33Dynamic Change LtdSoftware817%
9Nexus Oncology LtdClinical research2614%34Wavex Technology LimitedIT services816%
10RapidSwitch LtdInternet hosting2437%35Widget UK LtdIT distributor800%
11Digital Window LtdOnline marketing solutions2319%36Bluhalo LtdDigital marketing agency779%
12Redtray Limitede-Learning solutions2056%37How Splendid LtdWeb design agency779%
13Coast Digital LimitedDigital marketing agency1948%38iMeta Technologies LtdSoftware734%
14GreenlightSearch marketing agency1749%39Chess plcTelecommunications723%
15Opti-cal Survey EquipmentOptical survey equipment1664%40StaffPlanSoftware704%
16AssimaTechnology solutions1615%41Switch Media PlcInternet services682%
17ByBox Holdings LtdLogistics1340%42YouGov plcOnline research667%
18Daisy CommunicationsCommunications1202%432ergoMobile marketing624%
19BloxxIT security1182%44Virtual IT LimitedIT services611%
20Excelian LimitedIT consultancy1175%45Mobile Commerce LtdMobile search590%
21Miniclip LimitedGaming1171%46ValueworksInternet software services589%
22Comtec EnterprisesICT solutions1052%47LaganSoftware560%
23CSR plcWireless devices1027%48Bluefin SolutionsSAP solutions549%
24Sensornet LtdFibre optic sensing solutions1000%49Griffin InternetIP products523%
25Xtreme Business Solutions LtdCabling and telecoms suppliers997%50Entanet International LtdVoice and data connectivity services514%