The Daily Telegraph newspaper in London has been running a series on the “Britain’s biggest private companies” over the last week or so – covering the top 10 retailers, property, manufacturers, food and drink, transport and leisure, business services, financial services, utilities, and resources companies in Britain.

As quoted from the Telegraph website:

Many of Britain’s biggest companies are now in private hands, and The Daily Telegraph is profiling 100 of the most successful in a two-week series.

In today’s paper, they listed the top 10 Britain media companies – and the list makes interesting reading (note the Daily Telegraph group has been excluded from the list).

1 Guardian Media Group: Profit £306m
2 D. C. Thomson & Co: Profit £65m
3 RCD1 Ltd: Profit £57.4m
4 Symbian: Profit £50.9m
5 The Economist Newspaper: Profit £49m
6 Northgate Information Solutions: Profit £31.9m
7 Global Radio: Profit £19m (estimated)
8 Archant Ltd: Profit £16m
9 BBH Holdings: Profit £7.9m
10 Haymarket Group: Profit £8m

The interesting ones for me are Symbian (not bad from humble beginnings as Psion), and Bartle Bogle Hegarty (BBH).  BBH is one of the world’s larger advertising agencies who represent giants such as British Airways, Vodafone (I love their “make the most of now” campaign) and Audi. They also feature highly in the mobile space, having recently been named “Agency of the Year” at the recent mobile marketing awards.

Good signs that British Private companies can make it on the world stage.