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Tuesday 30th April 2019

The Leeds Digital Festival Awards take place TODAY!

The LDF Awards celebrate the success of the digital and tech industry in Leeds and the wider city region over the last year. The thriving scene is not only home to start-ups and SMEs, but also much larger businesses where tech is at the heart of everything they do.

The awards will celebrate the organisations and individuals who are driving the vibrant industry and making Leeds a fantastic hub of digital innovation. 

With a matter of hours to go until the big night, we thought we'd take the opportunity to get to know our fantastic shortlisted individuals and organisations.

In this blog we find out more about the 'Growth Company of the Year' shortlist, including reasons why they were nominated and some of their thoughts on being shortlisted...

Journey Further

Here is a little bit about some of the reasons Journey Further was shortlisted...

Journey Further is a rapidly growing performance marketing agency, which has grown from a team of 13 to 35 people over the past 12 months - a 169% increase in headcount.

- Journey Further turned over £4.2m in 2017 (up 125% from the previous year) with fee revenue up 183% to £1.8m.

- Journey Further won 18 new clients in 2018, doubling the size of its roster, with notable wins including Sky, Principal Hotel Company and multi-million pound startup, Airtasker.

- The agency launched its SEO and PR offering in August 2018, which has already grown from 3 to 8 people, won 9 accounts and turned over £200,000 in the past three months.

- Journey Further currently has a 100% staff retention rate; we have hired and retained the best talent by placing culture at the heart of the agency, and as a result, ranked no. 16 in Campaign’s Best Places To Work 2019, the definitive ranking of workplaces in the marketing and advertising industry.

- The agency also won Search Agency of The Year at The Northern Digital Awards in January 2019.

- The Journey Further Book Club, a community designed for time-pressured marketers has grown from 60 to 387 (534% increase) over the past 12 months, and hosted events with Sam Conniff (author of Be More Pirate) and Bruce Daisley (VP EMEA at Twitter and author of The Joy of Work)."


Here is a little bit about some of the reasons Netpremacy was shortlisted...

"- Experienced an increase in turnover from £6.23 million (2017) to £11.4 million (2018) with projected £20 million turnover in 2019. 

- 45% increase in headcount through 2018 

- 24 New Logos in 2018 (Morrisons, JD Sports, All Saints, GSK) and 4 new customers in the FTSE 100 

- Average size on new customer is 23,000 users 

- Achieved 477% of Google Premier Partner target

- Opened new offices in Alton and Bristol to support our growing customer base."

Here is what Netpremacy had to say about being shortlisted...

Vintage Cash Cow

Here is a little bit about some of the reasons Vintage Cash Cow was shortlisted...

"- Turnover// 2017 £1,157,000, 2018 £2,702,000 (135% growth)

- Growing the business cost effectively with a focus on operational efficiencies. We had a spell of hiring Q1 2018 (Up to FTE 45) but were then able to cut back by Q3. Jan 2018 headcount FTE 27, Jan 2019 32.

- The first 10 weeks of 2019 has seen staggering growth with 15,000 new customer registrations, compared to 6,500 in the last 10 weeks of 2018 (A 130% increase)

- Netherlands launched in March 2019

- Fundraising brand launched March 2019.

- Vintage Cash Cow has continued to grow in its 3rd year, improving its business model as it now expands into Europe and also the third sector.

- Vintage Cash Cow are now used in 380 Age UK stores as an easy way for shop managers to convert donated items into much needed funds. A further 180 other charities and hospice shops are also using the service.

- Using our “Vintech” approach for acquiring vintage goods there’s a real juxtaposition of once loved antiques and collectibles being acquired and sold using the in-house built appraising and selling platform.

- The growth has attracted the attention of Amsterdam based VC Airbridge and other fund managers who backed a bridging round in 2018, with commitments to join the Series A in Q2/Q3 2019."

Here is what Vintage Cash Cow had to say about being shortlisted...


Here is a little bit about some of the reasons rradar was shortlisted...

"- Turnover increase from £5 million 2017 to £7 million 2018

- Headcount increase from 92 at year end 2017 to 111 at year end 2018  

- Started in Hull in 2013, added Leeds and Glasgow (2016) and opening 2019 in Birmingham

- Built a suite of risk management digital tools produced by in-house developers delivered to clients to minimise business risks – launching new digital tool rradarreport in 2019 following the success and take up of other digital tools

The digital tools that deliver our legal knowledge to clients: 

An online portal giving clients 24/7 access to resources to use in the day-to-day running of their business, backed up by a team of legal advisers, solicitors and regulatory experts. It covers major topics including employment law, health and safety regulations, tax, commercial contracts and corporate governance. 

Our intelligent legal assistant is linked to our rradarstation. Using predictive text and voice recognition, her answers to questions regarding organisations’ legal queries can be delivered to a smartphone or other device.

rradarreport - soon to be launched 
A digital platform for the recording of safety incidents in the workplace, designed specifically to help businesses easily document, manage and respond to health and safety risks.
In addition, rradar offers clients risk management business tools; general and bespoke solutions to unlock value and meet their business needs and priorities, designed by our in-house experts."

The Data Shed

Here is a little bit about some of the reasons The Data Shed was shortlisted...

- The Data Shed is a consultancy based in Leeds specialising in data integration and analytical projects. Working with a wide range of clients (including TATE, Hermes, Friends of the Earth, GAMSTOP), their focus is always on driving value and insight from any data project. 

- Grew revenue by 147% in 2017 and 54% in 2018; predicted growth on 2019 is 30% after a focus on internal investment in a new product. We’re targeting a 60% growth in revenue to 2020.

- Staff numbers have grown from 10 in 2016 to 33 in March 2019, to a predicted 41 at the end of 2019.

- 3 number of new clients have been on-boarded in the last 12 months with a number of new projects in the pipeline for 19/20.

- A large project with Gamstop, the online gambling self-exclusion scheme was completed on target and on budget. 

- The Data Shed has been entirely self-funded by the two co-founders, CEO Anna Sutton and CTO Ed Thewlis, which is unusual for a tech company showing such fast and consistent growth.

- Growth has meant that the company has taken another floor of Mabgate Mills, allowing further expansion this year.

- Has increased partnerships with the tech community: the Leeds Digital Festival; Leeds Beckett University’s Women in Business programme; panelist at a number of events, including Tech Nation on Tour.

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