Indian companies are playing an increasingly important role in the British economy, contributing to positive GDP and employment growth, according to Grant Thornton UK LLP's India Tracker 2014 report, developed in collaboration with the Confederation of Indian Industry.
The report, which monitors UK registered businesses with ultimate Indian parent companies to identify the fastest-growing corporates by turnover and employment size, finds that there are currently over 700 Indian-owned small to large sized businesses in the UK, collectively employing over 100,000* individuals.
Of these, Grant Thornton identified 41 organisations experiencing year-on-year growth rates of more than 10%**, with more than half (26 corporates) demonstrating particularly strong growth in excess of 20%.
These 'Top 41'***, the report suggests, generated some £19 billion in combined revenues. Despite outliers, such as Tata Motors (accounting for more than 80% of the Top 41 group's total turnover), the group represents a broad range of large corporates (5), mid-sized corporates (17) and SMEs (19) across the UK.
Anuj Chande, Partner and Head of the South Asia Group at Grant Thornton UK LLP, commented: "The appetite and opportunities for successful UK investment by Indian companies remains as strong as ever. In light of sluggish growth potential in India, investors are increasingly eager to enter, or scale up their UK operations as the British economy re-enters a growth phase. The UK and India's cultural history also plays a large part in many Indian executives decision to set up a base here, giving them direct UK market access and a springboard into the recovering European market."
His Excellency Ranjan Mathai, High Commissioner of India to the United Kingdom, launched the report earlier this week at an exclusive dinner attended by some of the fastest growing and largest Indian employers. He said: "I am very pleased that this research has been conducted to show the strength of Indian investment and the range of business in which they have invested in the UK. This complements the UKTI statistics of India being the 5th largest investor in the UK last year."
The pharmaceutical / chemical and technology / telecoms sectors represent over half of the organisations in the Top 41 (22% and 32%, respectively); although the automotive, transport and engineering and manufacturing sectors are also strongly represented.
Geographically, the Top 41 had operations spread across the UK, with 29% based in London, 32% based in the South, 29% in the North and 10% based in the Midlands.
Chande continued: "The entrepreneurial spirit of Indian companies is evident in the fact that many have entered quite specialist and high-value sectors, such as pharmaceuticals and technology. Moreover, they've located their businesses in regions where the local job market acts in their favour – either through specific acquisitions of businesses in those regions, or the attractiveness of investment opportunities marketed by business councils and local authorities in these areas."
The report also identifies 12 Indian corporates which each employ more than 1,000 people in the UK.