Energy companies dominate Insider’s Top 500 Scottish companies

Scotland’s economy is at a critical juncture as it transitions to a greener future. The changing face of Insider’s Top500 suggests we’re on track to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2045, but we’ve lost critical companies headquartered in Scotland.

The latter is of course not a new problem, but the domino effect is that it hurts the professional supply chain of lawyers, accountants, IT professionals and support service companies who revolve around big business and trading cycles.

While Scotland remains a land of smaller, privately owned family businesses, it is essential that Top500 companies are innovative and sustainable market winners, allowing other businesses to thrive in their wake.

This ranking is a list of companies that have a registered presence in Scotland. While some are headquartered north of the border, many are subsidiaries of larger organizations and companies in the UK and the rest of the world.

The full list can be viewed here, but here are the top 25:

Insider Top500 2022 – one to 25

Rank Company Name Location Activity Turnover (£m) Profit (£m) Employees Profit per employee Year
To finish
22 Gift Previous Gift Previous Gift % Change Gift % Change
1 SSE Perth Energy £6,826.40 £6,800.60 £2,516.40 £367.60 12,513 7% 201 103 540% March 21st
2 Scottish power Glasgow Electricity production £5,164.00 £5,124.50 £802.70 £629.00 5,600 0% 143,339 28% December 20
3 Bank of Scotland Edinburgh Bank £5,147.00 £6,033.00 £883.00 £1,278.00 27,258 -7% 32,394 -26% December 20
4 Aviva Insurance Perth Assurance £5,383.00 £6,276.00 £264.00 £221.00 3,000 0% 88,000 19% December 20
5 Royal Bank of Scotland Edinburgh Bank £1,932.00 £2,379.00 £368.00 £1.00 2,100 -30% 175 238 52577% December 20
6 blank silver Glasgow Bank £1,570.00 £1,539.00 £416.00 (£173.00) 7,415 -ten% 56 102 -368% Sep 21
7 Diageo Scotland Edinburgh Drinks £1,424.00 £1,719.00 £328.00 £669.00 3,137 -1% 104,558 -50% Jun-20
8 Arnold Clark Auto Glasgow Car dealerships £3,798.20 £4,463.10 £156.50 £117.00 12,515 0% 12,505 34% December 20
9 Weir Group Glasgow Engineering £1,964.70 £2,661.90 £184.30 (£371.80) 11,130 -22% 16,559 -164% December 20
ten Chivas Brothers Dumbarton Whiskey £949.18 €1,139.48 £252.72 £539.33 1,649 -6% 153 256 -50% Jun-20
11 First group Aberdeen Transport £4,641.80 £7,754.60 £75.20 (£299.60) 89,053 -14% 844 -129% March 21st
12 Scottish widows Edinburgh Assurance £560.27 £510.74 £464.42 £407.17 2411 0% 192,627 14% December 20
13 Edrington Group Glasgow Drinks £625.60 £792.20 £178.40 £227.00 2,384 -6% 74,832 -17% March 21st
14 Gxo Logistics United Kingdom Edinburgh Contract logistics €1,197.69 £1,087.46 £46.60 £44.81 18,551 5% 2,512 -1% December 20
15 Miller Houses Edinburgh Home builder £655.60 £816.00 £98.40 £154.50 1,007 0% 97,716 -36% December 20
16 Abrdn Aberdeen Investment £564.90 £485.50 £112.60 £20.20 799 16% 140,926 381% December 20
17 The Company of 1887 Glasgow Drinks £514.30 £668.10 £139.20 £217.50 877 -6% 158,723 -32% March 21st
18 Cirrus Logic International (UK) Edinburgh Semiconductors £981.67 €1,018.40 £29.48 £22.50 112 -ten% 263 212 45% March 21st
19 farm food Glasgow Supermarkets £892.50 £661.75 £26.24 £22.15 4,509 17% 5,819 2% Jan-21
20 Scottish gas networks new bridge Energy £384.00 £357.00 £119.00 £116.00 275 -6% 432,727 ten% March 21st
21 Walter Scott & Associates Edinburgh Investment £295.79 £255.77 €196.03 £250.89 162 5% 1,210,043 -25% Dec-20
22 Stagecoach group Perth Transport £928.20 £1,417.60 £24.70 £40.60 23,762 -5% 1,039 -36% May 21
23 Beatrice Offshore Wind Farm Perth Energy at sea £343.70 £372.50 £102.50 £108.30 100 0% 1,025,000 -5% March 21st
24 John Deere Edinburgh Manufacturing £496.93 £606.52 £31.55 £4.61 89 -7% 354 449 639% Nov-20
25 Alliance Trust Dundee Investment £263.37 £60.81 £229.92 £552.89 6 0% 38,319,835 -58% December 20

SSE, which was at the forefront of sponsorship at COP26 in Glasgow, is once again Scotland’s highest ranked company and continues to make headlines, while ScottishPower, part of Spanish group Iberdrola , placed second.

Not so long ago, Royal Bank of Scotland and Bank of Scotland topped the Top500 lists, alongside Clydesdale Bank, Standard Life and Scottish Widows.

Although they have all since lost their minds, they play an important role in Scotland’s green business agenda and support environmental, social and governance (ESG) investing.

Clydesdale disappeared into Virgin Money, while nearly five years after Standard Life merged with Aberdeen Asset Management, the company’s value fell from a peak of £11.3billion.

The Scottish company has strayed somewhat and Standard Life Aberdeen has been “disavowed” at abrdn in 2020. Its first half 2021 result admitted that the company “still struggles to generate growth in a challenging competitive environment. intense from passive asset management giants as well”. than the continuing difficulties resulting from the 2017 merger”.

Meanwhile, Aviva Insurance remains a strong force in Perth. In 2021 it became the first major UK financial services company to aim for net zero by 2040 and pledged to invest responsibly, with one of the central pillars of its investment process now being taking into account ESG factors.

Dominating energy companies and building green infrastructure is a major theme for 2022.

SSE Renewables, along with Japanese conglomerate Marubeni Corporation and Danish fund management firm Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners, have secured the rights in the ScotWind leasing round to develop what will become one of the world’s largest floating offshore wind farms in the off the east coast of Scotland.

ScottishPower has also secured seabed rights to develop three offshore wind farms off the coast of Scotland, including two floating wind farms developed in conjunction with Shell.

Companies in the Scotch whiskey industry, which contribute around £5 billion to the economy each year, remain mainstays of the Top500, including Diageo, Chivas Brothers, The Edrington Group, Whyte & Mackay, William Grant & Son and Ian Macleod Distillers.

Ivan Menezes, Managing Director of Diageo, speaking at his company’s capital market day, said: “We continued to invest in our brands, we focused on accelerating growth and quickly responded to changes in consumer behavior.

Like other Scottish distillers, he challenges the sector to become more efficient and sustainable. “We launched a 10-year sustainability action plan, building on our strong track record of doing business the right way, from grain to glass.”

Across all sectors, companies are increasingly looking to take the right steps for a renewable future. The biggest challenge remains the construction sector in Scotland, particularly in the refurbishment of millions of homes which once relied on coal burning fireplaces and electric heaters.

As Scotland learns to live in a post-Covid state, one of the challenges for years to come will be how escalating energy prices in Scotland can come down to levels that do not fuel a high inflation for citizens and do not increase energy and transport costs for businesses.

It looks like Insider Top500 companies in 2022 will have to work even smarter to stay strong and profitable in the turmoil ahead.

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