19 Jun 2015 11:16am

AIM celebrates 20 years

The huge contribution that AIM has made to the UK economy is being recognised today as the market for growth companies celebrates its 20th birthday

Since June 1995, more than 3,500 UK and international companies – including household names like ASOS, Dominos, Majestic Wines, M&C Saatchi, Mulberry and YouGov – have joined AIM, raising in total £92bn through new and further issues.

Research from Grant Thornton puts the overall economic impact of AIM companies as equivalent to £25bn a year and says that AIM’s existence has led to the creation of 731,000 jobs in the UK since it was launched.

“AIM is a great British success story and today it is the most successful market for ambitious growth companies in the world,” said Xavier Rolet, chief executive of the London Stock Exchange group.

“Two decades after it was established, the diverse community that supports these businesses, have helped to make the market a vibrant and thriving one.

“Recent research overwhelmingly supports the value of AIM to our society and we are looking forward to continuing to work with the global AIM community on the market’s development in the years to come.”

Twenty years ago, the market was launched with just 10 companies with an aggregate value of £82m. Today, it is home to 1,074 businesses with a combined market cap of £75bn. Average market capitalisation per company has gone up from £8.2m to £70m in that time.

AIM companies come from across all the sectors. They include 65 consumer goods companies with an aggregate market cap of £5.305bn, 119 technology companies with an aggregate market cap of £10.074bn and 188 industrial companies with an aggregate market cap of £10.235bn.

The AIM company with the largest market capitalisation is online clothes retailer ASOS which is valued at £3.1bn.

BDO, which audits more AIM companies (152) than any other firm, says that being on AIM means “greater public exposure, considerable scrutiny over the way a business operates and a very strict regulatory regime, all of which adds to the credibility and profile of the business”.

BDO corporate finance director Neil McGill says, “With the economy continuing to grow, many firms will have ambitious growth strategies and be seeking to expand in the coming year.

“There is a substantial amount of cash available for the right firm: listing on AIM should at least be considered by any ambitious business.”

Julia Irvine


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