THE revenue generated by Basingstoke’s top companies really does merit the description ‘telephone numbers.’ That was the verdict of Larry Dillner, who revealed how businesses with bases in the borough are faring in terms of sales, pre-tax profits, employment and research and development investment.

The publisher of DECISION magazine was commissioned by Basingstoke law firm Lamb Brooks, to collate information based on figures filed at Companies House.

He and members of the Lamb Brooks team presented the information to more than 60 guests, including the senior management of some of the largest organisations in the town at Central 40, on MEPC Chineham Business Park.

Julie Latcham, marketing director at Lamb Brooks, declared that the collective turnover of the top 100 companies in Basingstoke was £11.4billion.

“That’s an increase of 7.5 per cent over the year,” said Julie. “Pre-tax profits were £1.2billion, creating a profit margin of 10.6 per cent.”

Mr Dillner’s report showed the company with the largest turnover in the borough is Computer 2000, which earlier this year relocated to Chineham Park. Owned by American Tech Data Group, it saw its sales increase by 15.2 per cent to £1.4bn.

The largest percentage increase by a public company was by De La Rue, with sales up 14 per cent to £528m.

Mention was also made of world-leading prosthetic and orthotic products Chas A Blatchford and Sons.

“Under the stewardship of chief executive Steven Blatchford, the fourth generation of the family-owned business, the company increased turnover by 15 per cent to £45m,” said Julie.

“One of the most familiar names in the commercial lexicon of Basingstoke is Centerprise International, and it is still the largest independent company in Basingstoke by sales.”

The company has seen profits rise by five per cent to £2.1million.

The company with the biggest pre-tax profits and whose UK headquarters are still in Basingstoke, is pharmaceutical giant Eli Lilly, filing £340m, while the best performance by a public company came from Genus plc – the world leader in bovine genetics.

The company, headquartered at Belvedere House, on Basing View posted a 33 per cent increase to £54.4m.

Balvinder Jaj, from Lamb Brooks, spoke about employment, noting that Basingstoke is the most self-contained location in Hampshire for jobs.

“It provides jobs within the borough boundaries for 67 per cent of Basingstoke people eligible for work,” he explained.

“The largest independent company in terms of staff numbers is Chas A Blatchford with 561 staff – an increase of 13.6 per cent.”

Mr Dillner spoke about charity donations, often termed CSR – corporate social responsibility.

He said: “Charitable and community donations, be it money, time or product, by the top 100 companies in Basingstoke totalled £1.2m – an impressive increase 178 per cent.”

Citing Holtzbrinck Publishers Holdings, which owns Macmillan Publishers, as the biggest donor, Mr Dillner said: “They increased their donations from £22,000 to £500,000.”

Impressed with the figures, Rupert Batho, managing director of Chineham Park, said: “The report revealed that Basingstoke companies are performing at a world-class level, with significant increases in profitability as well outstanding investment levels in research and development.”