You are on page 1of 6


The journal for waste & resource management professionals

Meet The Industry’s 50

Fastest Growing Companies

INSIDE: Futuresource 2010 Conference Programme Revealed

The CIWM Journal

100 years February 2010
1910 - 2010

Waste’s Fast
Following on from their article
on the waste industry’s top 20
companies, Mark Wilson and
Robert Pearce of Catalyst
Corporate Finance turn their
attention to the 50 fastest growing
companies in the waste industry,
as introduced by Ben Wood

he phrase “in the current
economic climate” has become
a staple of our vocabulary in
the last 12 months, but I make
no apologies for using it again here
when I say that when I was offered
the opportunity to run an article on
the fastest 50 growing businesses in
the waste industry, my response was:
“Some positive stories on business
growth? In the current economic
climate? Yes please!”
Our colleagues at Catalyst Corporate recognised names – the aforementioned our second placed business starting
Finance, the company behind our Biffa, along with Grundon, Cory, Hills operation in only 2006! Organic
successful “Top 20” series of articles Waste Solutions and Bywaters – making growth has also been a prominent
carried out the research and have further strides forward, but it is some feature of the top 50 but, once again,
provided us with an impressive list of newer names that have burst into the our second placed business proves the
50 waste-based businesses that are top 10. exception to the rule having completed
beating the recession to return some Equipment suppliers and manufacturers three bolt-on acquisitions.
very impressive figures… as the table accounted for eight of the top 50, while “The waste industry’s Fast 50 makes
opposite shows. However, in the organics, plastics, aggregates, electricals, fascinating reading because there is
tradition of all good chart countdowns, paper, glass, clinical waste, landfill and so much movement in candidates that
you’ll have to turn the page to uncover mobile phones were all represented, qualify as private groups,” said Mark
those from 10 to two, with our winner showing that recyclers across the board Wilson. “We expect other new entrants
profiled on page 22. were capable of achieving growth. in next year’s review as larger players
What I can tell you now, without Catalyst also noted that more than dispose of their non-core subsidiaries
giving the game away, was that the 20 percent of the companies listed and they enter private or financial
company that tops the list really was a were backed by a private equity firm, ownership.”
run-away winner. A compound annual including our number one and two Verdant and Shore Recycling would
growth rate of more than 170 percent placed businesses. Outside of the top have both been included in the 50, had
saw it more than double that of even the 10, these also included Enviroco, AWS they not been acquired, according to
second-placed business. Eco Plastics, OSS Environmental, MRS Catalyst’s criteria (fully explained on
Of course, posting any positive Environmental, PHS All Clear, Agrivert, page 22), while Wilson added: “The
growth rate should be considered a Cory Environmental and Biffa. full effects of commodity price volatility
major success, and those businesses Catalyst also looked at the size of the and reduced commercial and industrial
such as Glasdon, Ramshorn and Biffa, businesses listed, noting that the majority waste levels have not yet been reflected
placed at 48, 49 and 50 in the list, have annual sales of less than £50m (84 in the reported figures, so we can
have themselves delivered a fantastic percent), with just eight of the top 50 expect the 2011 Waste Fast 50 to look a
performance, which brings us nicely achieving sales of more than £50m. little different.”
onto a breakdown of the primary sectors The majority of businesses listed have Congratulations to our top 10, and
of the Waste Fast 50. also been in existence for a number of especially to our outstanding winner,
Waste management businesses years – typically more than a decade. and we hope you find the data makes
accounted for 34 percent of the top Despite that statistic, the top two interesting reading… and here’s to
50, with some of the industry’s most businesses are both relatively young – further industry growth in 2011. CIWM

18 CIWM February 2010


Company Primary Business LFY CAGR Turnover Website

11 Enviroco Limited Hazardous / Oils 2008 38 28,197

12 AWS ECO Plastics Limited Plastic 2008 32 10,193

13 Futur Limited Equipment 2008 29 16,308

14 Stirling Fibre Limited Paper 2008 28 20,856

15 G.B.N. Services Limited Skips 2008 27 7,902

16 OSS Environmental Holdings Ltd Hazardous / Oils 2008 25 24,964

17 Ascot Environmental Limited 1 Equipment 2008 25 65,731

18 T J Transport Limited Aggregates 2008 25 14,393

19 ECO Sustainable Solutions Limited Organic 2008 24 5,634

20 Centrol Recycling Group Limited Regional WM 2008 23 19,537

21 Avondale Environmental Limited Landfill 2008 23 22,963

22 Roydon Holdings Limited Plastic 2008 19 17,875

23 Environmental Waste Controls Ltd Regional WM 2008 19 23,526

24 Blue Machinery (Spares) Limited Equipment 2009 18 6,083

25 WasteCare 2 Electrical 2008 17 18,449

26 Harpers Environmental Limited Organic 2009 16 8,448

27 MRS Environmental Services Limited Regional WM 2008 16 25,808

28 Grundon Waste Management Ltd Regional WM 2008 16 82,321

29 Cleansing Service Group Limited Regional WM 2008 15 44,367

30 O’Donovan (Waste Disposal) Limited Skips 2008 15 11,928

31 PHS All Clear Limited Regional WM 2009 14 52,936

32 Silent Valley Waste Services Limited Regional WM 2009 13 6,841

33 H. Sivyer Transport Limited Aggregates 2008 13 12,166

34 Cumbria Waste Management Ltd Regional WM 2009 12 13,488

35 Agrivert Limited Organic 2008 12 7,940

36 Cliniserve Limited Clinical 2009 12 12,081

37 Hills Waste Solutions Limited Regional WM 2008 11 53,916

38 Reuse Collections Limited Glass 2008 11 30,129

39 Premier Waste (UK) Holdings PLC Regional WM 2008 11 5,226

40 ACM Waste Management PLC Equipment 2009 10 9,986

41 Devon Waste Management Limited Regional WM 2009 9 16,652

42 Bywaters (Leyton) Limited Regional WM 2009 8 25,567

43 Taurus Waste Recycling (Holdings) Ltd Skips 2008 8 12,040

44 Whale Tankers Limited Equipment 2008 8 24,650

45 Castle Environmental Limited Hazardous / Oils 2008 8 11,392

46 Chambers Waste Management PLC Regional WM 2008 8 11,137

47 Cory Environmental Holdings Ltd National WM 2008 7 201,518

48 Biffa Limited National WM 2008 4 776,500

49 Ramshorn Limited Equipment 2008 4 17,640

50 Glasdon Group Limited Equipment 2008 3 32,274

Table 1: the Waste Fast 50 companies as ranked from 50 to 11

1 Ascot Environmental Limited is the primary trading entity within UK Capital Venture (Holdings) Limited
2 WasteCare is the trading name of Silver Lining (Holdings) Limited

LFY refers to the latest financial year for which data was available
CAGR refers to the company’s compound annual growth rate
Turnover is measured in thousands GBP for the last available year

February 2010 ciwm 19


Riverdale Paper PLC GSS Support Services Limited

Primary Business: Paper Primary Business: Regional WM
LFY: 2008 LFY: 2009
CAGR: 39% CAGR: 50%
Turnover: 7 281 Turnover: 7 442
Web: Web:

The Riverdale Paper Group started life as Riverdale GSS, as its name suggests, is a multi-service support
Recycling, offering services for the recovery and recycling organisation, providing a range of specialist services in
of all types of paper and board. The organisation has areas that are non-core activities for its clients, including
grown through the addition of other business services waste management, recycling and cleaning services,
and now consists of three separate, specialist divisions of hence its inclusion in the Waste Fast 50.
security shredding, paper recycling and waste recovery. With access to UK, European and worldwide recycling
Riverdale Security Shredding now provides a markets, GSS’ waste management services include
comprehensive data destruction service, encompassing fully managing its clients’ waste streams and generating
the secure disposal of all types of digital media and revenues, while it has also developed an expertise in
equipment, whilst the Group’s recycling services have managing WEEE, but its primary goal remains waste
broadened to include all types of waste recovery and minimization. It strives, where possible, to return recycled
disposal with the establishment of Riverdale Waste. materials to its clients to make a truly closed loop system.

Celtic Recycling Limited Enpure Holdings Limited

Primary Business: Electrical Primary Business: Equipment
LFY: 2008 LFY: 2009
CAGR: 39% CAGR: 51%
Turnover: 7 838 Turnover: 81 417
Web: Web:

Celtic Recycling describes itself as a specialist in the Enpure is a process engineering business offering services
recovery and recycling of end of life heavy electrical from design through to construction for the environmental
equipment, as well as hazardous waste treatment and and industrial sectors. Operating in the UK and overseas,
disposal, and it has used the skills developed in response the company turned its attention to the solid waste market
to the electricity industry demands to grow its business early in 2000 and is one of three businesses in the top 10
in other sectors with plant or equipment disposal needs, to be backed by a private equity firm – Spirit & Maven.
such as rail network operators and major power users. It is a design-led business supported by effective project
Based in Bridgend since 1993, the company has made delivery. It offers services from concept and feasibility
notable strides, with 2010 seeing it set to look at making studies, through design and build, to operational support
innovative use of bar code technology to track movements services. Enpure offers both its own key technologies
of hazardous and non-hazardous waste consignments for and those of others, including autoclaving, aerobic and
enhanced auditing and monitoring purposes. anaerobic MBT, materials recover and fuel preparation.

Choice Waste Management Limited J&A Young (Holdings) Limited

Primary Business: Exporter Primary Business: Plastic
LFY: 2008 LFY: 2008
CAGR: 39% CAGR: 56%
Turnover: 16 329 Turnover: 43 525
Web: Web:

Choice Waste Management recycles plastic, paper Established in 1975, J&A Young leads the
and cardboard waste. The company was established plastics specialists in the Waste Fast 50 – a strong
by Rizwan Iqbal in 1997 after identifying opportunities category with three companies in the top 25.
throughout the world in waste recycling, and started by Its five sites, covering Birmingham, Loughborough,
exporting plastic packaging waste. Derby and Manchester employ the latest technologies
From its small origins the company has since grown and the company currently collects and recycles
into an organisation that is now an accredited exporter post-consumer waste from several major retailers, which
of packaging waste (being able to issue PERNs), a is used in the production of refuse sacks and builders
registered waste carrier and also registered as an film, to name just a couple of the recycled products on
exporter of waste materials to China with the General offer. Its sorting plant in Derby is the only plastic sorting
Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection & facility in the UK capable of separating all polymers
Quarantine of the P.R. of China (AQSIQ). within a plastic bottle grade, by both type and colour.

20 CIWM February 2010


HW Martin Waste Limited Reconomy (Holdings) Limited

Primary Business: Regional WM Primary Business: Regional WM
LFY: 2009 LFY: 2008
CAGR: 62% CAGR: 84%
Turnover: 26 704 Turnover: 74 527
Web: Web:

The Martin Group of companies has delivered

public and private works contracts for over 30 years.
The Group’s key areas of activity are waste recycling
and management; traffic management systems;
commercial fencing and vegetation management;
permanent and temporary road safety barriers; and
plant and vehicle provision and maintenance.
The waste recycling and management division,
HW Martin Waste Ltd, collects, separates, bales and
provides re-processors with glass, plastics, paper, card,
metals, concrete & rubble, wood and garden waste.
Recycled materials go back into the manufacturing
process to make new products including bottles,
paper and aggregates. The green waste is composted
and used in agriculture, horticulture and domestic
gardens. The companies waste management services
also include operating household waste recycling
centre’s, Materials Recycling Facilities and managing
transfer stations and collection contracts.
HW Martin has a rolling programme of research into Of all the companies in the Fast 50 Reconomy was
new outlets for recyclable materials. The company one of only a few to be formed less than 10 years
diverts over 300 000 tonnes of recyclable material ago and is one of only 20 percent of businesses to be
each year and it says “none of it goes to landfill”. PE backed. It was also recognised for adopting the
“buy and build” strategy whereby a company initially
invests in a business platform and then acquires smaller
business to bolt on.
Community Waste Ltd
Primary Business: Regional WM Reconomy Holdings Ltd was formed in July 2006
LFY: 2009 to develop a business in the UK recycling and
CAGR: 68% waste management sector. To date, is has made 12
Turnover: 14 519 acquisitions and the business has annualised turnover of
Web: approximately £80m.
The largest part of the group is currently Reconomy
At a time when many businesses are diversifying in Solutions, the leading national outsourced waste
order to grow, it is refreshing to read almost immediately services provider, which operates nationwide recycling
on Community Waste’s website that it considers itself a focused waste management and compliance services.
“recycling company” not a “waste management business”. In addition, Reconomy has to date acquired a total of
Among the services it offers, however, is not only the seven businesses, operating in the East Midlands and
handling of recyclable waste, but the design, construction East Anglia regions, providing a broad range of recycling
and operation of materials recovery facilities (MRFs), the and waste management services to customers in the
marketing of recyclable materials and a full audit trail. commercial and industrial sector. These businesses
Working with paper, glass, plastics and metals, have been re-branded as Reconomy Oakley, Reconomy
Community Waste currently handles 200 000 tonnes of Alibone and Anglia Recycling. These brands are being
recyclables per annum and it has its own environmental developed through further investment in sorting and
objective to achieve 100 percent diversion from landfill by processing facilities in order to minimise the amount of
finding new markets for all other materials that are part of waste going to landfill.
its own dedicated Materials Expansion Research Program. Reconomy completed the acquisition of Nutrafeed, a
The company has four MRFs, in West Oxfordshire, company specialising in recycling packaged food wastes,
Doncaster, Sheffield and Milton Keynes (MK), with the based in Wrexham.
93 000 tonne per annum MK site standing as an example of Mark Wilson, Catalyst Corporate Finance, said:
Community Waste’s expertise in design, construction and “Reconomy is a well known example of a private
operation. In December 2009 it signed a 15-year, £150m equity backed waste business pursuing a rapid
contract to continue sorting dry recyclables on behalf of buy-and-build strategy. I know that it is well known
Milton Keynes Council – the sort of development that to many regional operators and there is a lot of
has helped propel the company into the top three fastest interest throughout the industry as to how successful
growing waste businesses in the UK. its growth model will ultimately turn out to be.”

February 2010 ciwm 21


Eazyfone Limited
Primary Business: Mobile Phones
LFY: 2009
CAGR: 172%
Turnover: 36 246

Described by the authors of this research as “by far

the fastest growing waste recycling business”, Eazyfone
registered a compound annual growth rate of 172
percent, more than double that of even the second
placed Reconomy – a truly outstanding performance and
made all the more impressive by the fact that the mobile
phone recycling sector was not the best represented in
the top 50. In fact, its only representative in the top 50
was Eazyfone!
Eazyfone is also one of the youngest companies in the
top 50, being formed in the last decade (in 2001), but
growing rapidly over the last three years in particular.
Unlike many of the companies listed here, whose
customers are local authorities and corporate clients,
Eazyfone’s customer base is purely private consumers,
and Catalyst expects to see even further growth from the
Reproduced with kind permission of CIWM and IWM Business Services

business as it exports its business model to Europe and

expands its service to other, associated products, such
as MP3 players, digital cameras, laptops and satellite
navigation systems in the near future. But what exactly
does it do?
Eazyfone Limited is comprised of five brands: FoneAid,
Envirostudents, Fones4Schools, Envirocharities and its most
prominent brand, Envirofone is a mobile
phone recycling operation that collects and refurbished old organisations, and Envirofone has paid out more than £30m
handsets and either remarkets or recycles them, and is the to its customers to date. As part of its commitment to the
most recognised and high profile of the Eazyfone stable/ environment it has provided funds to help save endangered
The Envirofone brand was added to the Eazyfone range rainforests, and under the Envirocharirities brand you
in 2005 and remains committed to supporting a greener will find such organisations as Barnados, Age Concern,
environment… and this is how. Caudwell Children’s Recycles and Rainforest Concern.
The company strives to re-use every phone it receives Managing director, Nick Brown (pictured atop a pile
and grades them all accordingly, paying the sender an of mobile phone handsets), has been with the business
appropriate fee depending on the model and its quality. since June 2008 and he told CIWM: “Eazyfone – trading
Those that can be used or easily refurbished go into as Envirofone – has enjoyed an exceptional year’s growth.
stock for re-sale, while those that cannot be re-used are The hard work and dedication of our team has really paid
reprocessed, valuable components recovered and the off, and our strategic business plan is reaping impressive
remainder smelted for energy recovery. dividends. We’re thrilled to be listed in CIWM’s Waste Fast
The handsets are recovered from individuals and charity 50 and look forward to continued success in 2010.”

Waste Fast 50 Methodology

The Catalyst Corporate Finance Waste Fast 50 2010 ranks the fastest growing private waste services businesses in the UK by sales.
Criteria for inclusion: the Waste Fast 50 assesses waste services businesses which are registered in the UK as private, independent and
unquoted companies. This category includes private companies that are backed by private equity houses.
All companies considered for inclusion in the Waste Fast 50 achieved a level of annual sales of £5m or above in at least one of the three
financial years assessed.

Exclusions: companies which have filed abbreviated accounts at Companies House without disclosing sales levels are excluded. Unaudited
management accounts are not accepted due to the absence of any third party validation. Companies that have any shares or other financial
instruments listed on a stock exchange, or where any of their shares are held by any UK or overseas quoted company, do not qualify for
inclusion. Metal recyclers have been deliberately excluded as this represents a very distinct niche within the recycling industry.

Data-collection methods: companies have been identified through several research methods including the analysis of information from
Companies House, financial databases, press coverage and other research.

Any firm which believes that it may not automatically be included in the 2011 Fast 50 due to the unavailability of public statutory accounts
information but which believes it has a verifiable case for inclusion, is invited to contact Robert Pearce of Catalyst Corporate Finance at

22 CIWM February 2010