House builder Chartway Group has been named as the fastest-growing private company in Kent in the annual MegaGrowth 50 list, published by the KM Group.
The Maidstone-based construction company topped the table in its first year of eligability, having been founded at the height of the recession in May 2009.
Its turnover grew by an astonishing 1,302.9% in four years, making it the first individual company to record four-figure expansion since the list began 13 years ago.
Its success was revealed at an exclusive gathering at Turkey Mill, Maidstone, attended by more than 100 company bosses from the county on Wednesday.
Director Philip Cunningham said: "It's a fantastic achievement for the business.
"We weren't particularly going for growth when we set up five years ago but growth has come to us and helped deliver the houses people are living in now."
Despite it being a tough time for the construction sector, Chartway Group managed to grow by winning valuable contracts with housing associations, delivering projects on time and at the expected price.
Managing director Ian Savage said: “The housing associations still had money to spend during the recession and as long as you bought the land right and kept your costs very tight you could still make a profit in the private market as well.
“Although it was challenging it was healthy. Starting from scratch and having no huge overheads meant there was still a margin to be made.
“The banks were sceptical but we were able to prove we were able to do what we said we were going to do.”
This year’s runner up was Childrensalon, the luxury children’s clothes retailer based in Tunbridge Wells.
Its turnover grew by 338.5%, thanks mainly to its expanding online operation, which counts the Arabic world as its second largest market.
“The banks were sceptical but we were able to prove we were able to do what we said we were going to do...” - Chartway Group's Ian Savage
MegaGrowth 50 measures growth in turnover over the last four years, based on accounts filed to Companies House and submitted to our Kent Business supplement.
For the second year, it also measured companies by expanding export sales.
Detling-based crash-barrier and road-safety kit supplier Highway Care Limited took the top spot with growth of 4,303.3%.
Its development of portable crash barriers has gained attention in Europe.
(blob) Read about all the companies in the MegaGrowth 50 list in a free 12-page pullout inside this week’s Kent Business supplement.