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The London List – London startups exceeding $10m in annual revenues

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Saul Klein is a partner at European VC firm Index Ventures, previously worked for Skype, co-founded Video Island and is founder of Seedcamp. In this guest post he responds to recent posts by TechCrunch US writer Paul Carr regarding the position of London as a startup hub.

I’m singing in the rain
Just singing in the rain
What a glorious feelin’
I’m happy again
I’m laughing at clouds
So dark up above
The sun’s in my heart
And I’m ready for love
– Lyrics Arthur Freed, music Nacio Herb Brown (dance moves Gene Kelly)

It seems that it remains fashionable to knock the London startup community – especially if you’re a former resident. There is no question that London (and Europe) has a long way to go.

But we really believe London has a lot to offer as world-class design & marketing, access to global markets and siginificant capital become more and more of a competitive advantage for ambitious companies.

Our experience investing in London over the last 10 years, is that this is a city that attracts great entrepreneurs and has consistently produced very significant technology start ups. So while we love investing in other established and emerging technology hotbeds like Palo Alto, San Francisco, LA, New York, Berlin, Stockholm, Moscow and Tel Aviv – we love London.

So while the sun may not shine and the rain often dulls the spirit, we humbly submit a first cut at The London List.

Below are over 50 London companies, who we know well that have either exceeded $10m in annual revenues (in many cases $100m) or have established and are leading their markets globally (as per the requirements of our esteemed colleagues across the pond).

These companies show that there’s a lot more to London’s future than Wimbledon, the Royal Family and the 2012 Olympics.

Next time you’re in town rather than get depressed, why not spend a couple of hours with each of these companies. If you were working Valley hours and keeping to this list, it will only take you 5-6 days. So, still lots of time for visiting the Tate Modern, going to the theatre, a gig at the Round House, the beautiful game at the Emirates or whatever takes your fancy.

No need to even bother with the very significant bases Google, Facebook, LinkedIn, Amazon, Yahoo, AOL, eBay and apparently Twitter are planning in London to see why they find London so compelling. In fact, let’s hope the London List doesn’t get too much beyond 50 otherwise you’d be staying for at least a month each time.

Looking forward to your comments on the list below, any additions or corrections – and most of all, looking forward to helping the next generation of world-beaters to get their start from London.

A good place to start might be Seedcamp London – you can still apply.

So….

In the last 10 years:

ASOS
Betfair
King.com
Lastminute
Lovefilm
Messagelabs
Miniclip
Moneybookers
Moneysupermarket
Net-a-Porter
Ocado
Photobox
Rightmove
Shazam
Skype

In the last 5 years:
Alfresco
Canonical
Huddle
Just Eat
Mimecast
Moo
Moshi Monsters
Not on the High Street
OpenX
Playfish
Scansafe
Seatwave
Spotify
Viagogo
Wonga
Zoopla

On the way:

Alertme
Astley Clarke
Fizzback
Glasses Direct
People per Hour
Badoo
Shazam
Wonga
Mendeley
Smarkets

And Some Emerging Leaders:
Amee
Groupspaces
Seedcamp
Songkick
Tweetdeck
PeerIndex
Datasift
RjDj
Timetric
Mixcloud
LiveBookings
We7
Moonfruit
Skimlinks

  • http://www.badoo.com Lloyd Price

    Great article ! Would like to add Badoo.com to the list, we are London based, born and bred, 4 years old and have an annual revenue run rate of over $100m, 95 million users, 9th largest Facebook App in the world, are the 2nd largest social network for over 18’s in the world after Orkut etc…

    • http://qwerly.com Max Niederhofer

      “2nd largest social network for over 18′s in the world”

      I thought that was AdultFriendFinder? Oh well, same market.

  • http://www.geocast.com Colin Bruce

    Suggested addition: http://www.simplybusiness.co.uk

    t/o amply >£10m & a 50%+ y-o-y growth rate.

    Focused on business insurance 6 years ago and the team are doing a brilliant job.

  • http://www.addpiks.com Iqbal Gandham

    Saul,

    Great post, about time we stopped this London bashing with some real stats…

    Iqbal

  • http://jetlib.com/news/2011/01/10/hold-everything-%e2%80%93-you-want-london-startups-exceeding-10m-in-revenues-ok/ Hold Everything – You Want London Startups Exceeding $10m In Revenues? OK | JetLib News

    […] Read the rest of this entry » […]

  • http://www.springboard.com Amir Chaudhry

    Folks should also check out springboard.com, based in Cambridge. Applications are open there too!

  • http://www.livebookings.net Andris Berzins

    Add to the emerging category leaders Livebookings. We provide over 8,000 restaurants with reservations and marketing services. Last year we delivered over 7 million guests to restaurants across Europe and the USA. In Europe we are far and away the market leader and growing rapidly. Revenues are not public but above $10m.

    Andris Berzins – Chief Marketing Officer, Livebookings

  • Saul Klein

    Thx guys – will add to the list when I post on our blog.

    • http://www.facebook.com/rmuirhead Richard Muirhead

      Tideway Systems – First year of trading 2003, $20m in 2007, sold to BMC Software 2009.

  • http://topsy.com/eu.techcrunch.com/2011/01/10/the-london-list-london-startups-exceeding-10m-in-annual-revenues/?utm_source=pingback&utm_campaign=L2 Tweets that mention The London List – London startups exceeding $10m in annual revenues -- Topsy.com

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by TechCrunch, Mike Butcher, John Lewis, viar, Rocky Rodriguez and others. Rocky Rodriguez said: RT @TechCrunch: Hold Everything – You Want London Startups Exceeding $10m In Revenues? OK http://tcrn.ch/flOzhR […]

  • Paul

    Also Quidco – well above $10m and based London/Sheffield :)

  • http://www.competitionhunter.com Iain

    Weird when I see Miniclip attached to figures like that. To look at it you’d never think would you?

  • http://www.ayojak.com Santosh Panda

    Wow, lot of time I used to hear ‘other side/not to successful side’ of London, this article settles the score that there is green on other side :)
    Thanks Saul.

  • http://twitter.com/mikebutcher Mike Butcher

    We’re adding to the list too, keep’em coming

  • http://www.askpeopleyouknow.com David Gilbey

    Great list; interesting subject. (Worth also noting the global mobile players moving their global HQs to London for clear operational benefits).

    Another emerging leader is AskPeopleYouKnow. Answers and recommendations from people’s known, trusted networks built on inventive technology. Plus enterprise biz creating knowledge networks for organisations.

    David Gilbey. Co-founder, AskPeopleYouKnow

  • Nir

    No offense but this list is equivalent to a single building in Tel-Aviv High tech zone.

    • Saul Klein

      @nir – love to see that list now that i’m living in herzilya.

      but as far as i know the list of current israeli web companies doing more than $10m is probably not much longer than: conduit, wix, myheritage, babylon, sweetim, incredimail, kenshoo – would love to hear the list. in past you could include: icq

  • Blake chandlee

    Nice list Saul and totally agree that more needs to be done to increase visibility for entrepreneurs outside of silicon valley..both London and Tel Aviv are producing tremendous innovation…

  • Craig

    Would it have been so difficult to link to each website in the list?

  • http://www.askvisory.com Sadiq Quasim

    Another start up coming out of London is http://www.askvisory.com. just launched in December 2010.

    Creating a marketplace for professionals to provide paid phone consultations.

  • http://mixcloud.com Nico Perez

    @Saul

    Thanks for including Mixcloud in the list of emerging leaders, and for continuing to support the London scene.

    Nico Perez (Mixcloud)

  • http://www.geocast.com Colin Bruce

    @Mike

    Why is Simply Business not retrospectively added to the list but Livebookings is? Insurance not interesting? B2B not interesting?

    Livebookings looks to be founded in Sweden but that makes it.

  • pierce

    Skimlinks.com ? An affliate advertising company that specializes in converting links in websites into cash….

  • Matt

    Gumtree.com would be a good addition – founded in London 2000, sold to eBay 2005

  • Steve

    Hang on, hang on. Has everyone abandoned their critical faculties? Sure, Lastminute et al have exceeded $10m – but they have had ten years to do so, which makes it vastly less surprising. Sure, they were startups once – but they’re not any more, and their presence on this list distorts the argument. Meanwhile, what’s Skype doing on this list? It was founded by a Dane and a Swede, was built on Estonian technology and is based in Luxembourg.

    Most worrying, though, is that sneaky disclaimer: “or have established and are leading their markets globally”. I’m sure that companies like PeerIndex and DataSift may one day have burgeoning revenue streams, but right now both services are still testing their business offerings – and thus not charging for them. Are they leading their markets globally? I’d say that right now, they fail to meet the criteria for this list on both counts.

    • Saul Klein

      @Steve – you’re right, many in the 10 year list are doing more than $100m in revenues by now and some closer to $500m+.

      Skype is HQed in Luxemburg but London is and always has been the main commercial hub.

      One of the beauties of London (like the Valley) is the diversity of founders – Danes, Swedes. French, German, South African, even English :)

      re PeerIndex & Datasift – arguable, but they are both contenders in meaningful spaces.

  • http://www.giftsproject.com Ron

    Great post Saul.

  • http://the-accelerator.blogspot.com/ robin klein

    Great post, Saul!
    Lets have more FACTS and fewer assertions.
    I too, get pretty tired of the Silicon Valley vs Europe debate – which is largely irrelevant because we are all trying to build global businesses. This debate leads to insularity and an inward looking approach. Lets take the best from all corners of the globe.
    BTW, TAG has backed 13 companies in the list.

    • Arturo

      TAG has backed 13 of these companies? Go figure. That must be why they’re getting a nice free plug in the somewhat partial and meaningless “On The Way” and “Emerging Leaders” sections.

      Interesting the number of massive companies you’ve never heard of being listed in the comments, while TC slavishly reports every time a member of the Klein family cracks a fart.

  • http://www.globalpersonals.co.uk Ross Williams

    It’s worth adding Global Personals Limited to the list – we’re currently doing annualised revenues of around US$40million (based in Windsor, but in the grand scheme of things probably close enough to London!)

    As mentioned on Quora, there is an issue that commercially interesting (profitable!) companies may not garner as much press attention as technically interesting companies but that’s probably a discussion for another time.

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