Profiles of Scotland's leaders - both in business and in the public sector
LEADERS OF THE YEAR
1= (69=) Afzal Khushi (57), director, Jacobs & Turner Ltd
1= (69=) Akmal Khushi (56), director, Trespass (Jacobs & Turner Ltd)
The brothers defied current retail market conditions with a solid performance from their outdoor clothing manufacturing and retail company. During the year they opened thirty-four new Trespass stores across the UK and reported a 27 per cent rise in profits to s3.05m on the back of a 16 per cent jump in turnover to s61.8m. They were frustrated in their efforts to buy rival Blacks Leisure when it hit financial problems by JD Sports, which acquired 300 Blacks and Millets stores in a s20m deal.
We predict: More store openings not only in the UK but also across Europe.
First job (Akmal): "I have only ever had one job. I left university and began working in the family business which now employs over 1100 people."
2= (7) Sir Ian Wood (70), chairman, John Wood Group Plc
2= (1) Allister Langlands (54), chief executive, John Wood Group Plc
2= (6) Bob Keiller (48), chief executive designate, John Wood Group Plc
The end of an era looms at Wood Group but it is very much a planned succession for the Aberdeen oil services firm. When Sir Ian Wood steps down from the board on November 1, it will end a remarkable 45-year career with the company his father founded.
He leaves the business in good shape after chief executive Langlands oversaw another strong year for the group, which reaped the benefit of oil and gas firms upping investment in North Sea production. Shares in the company reached a record high as the synergies from the acquisition of PSN, which significantly increased its exposure to the UK Continental Shelf, began to gain traction.
Langlands step up to the chairman's role has opened the way for Keiller to continue his meteoric rise up the corporate ladder. Less than three years ago Keiller was running smaller rival Production Services Network (PSN). His achievements in successfully integrating a team of 9000 PSN staff with 14,000 from Wood Group confirmed his credentials for the top job.
We predict: No radical change of tack is expected under Langlands and Keiller and Sir Ian will have more time to try and salvage something from the dashed plans for Aberdeen's Union Terrace Gardens.
First job (Keiller): "Aged 12 I started a Sunday morning paper round, then grew it, bought others from rivals and ended up with a strong market position. I learned loads in the process profit is not the same as cash, purchasing power helps, good staff are essential business can be great fun but its always hard work."
3 (21) Keith Cochrane (47), chief executive, The Weir Group Plc
Another busy year of M&A activity for Cochrane and his team at Weir. The s430m purchase of US-based Seaboard represented the biggest deal ever completed by the Glasgow engineering group. But Cochrane demonstrated he isn't pursuing growth at any cost when he chose to walk away from a takeover battle for Australian peer Ludowici.
Despite posting record results for the first half of the year, a warning of a slowdown in orders from North Americas fracking industry has continued to weigh on Weir Groups share price.
We predict: In a global sector seeing significant consolidation activity, Cochrane is no doubt running the rule over a number of potential acquisitions. But with its shares well off their highs, speculation that Weir is itself in the sights of the likes of Siemens or GE is likely to persist.
4 (3) Ian Marchant (51), chief executive, SSE Plc
Marchant sparked something of a war of words with the UK Government recently over the factors behind SSE announcing it was raising its energy prices by nine per cent. The head of the Perth utility, formerly known as Scottish & Southern Energy, is seen as one of the more outspoken leaders in an industry facing unprecedented change from both government and regulators.
The huge investment made by SSE in onshore wind generation in recent years was highlighted when capacity passed the 1GW mark more than that of all its conventional hydro-electric stations.
Marchant also struck a s390m deal to buy a portfolio of power stations in Ireland from Endesa.
We predict: This October marks Marchant's decade at the helm of SSE during which he has delivered unbroken dividend growth for shareholders. More of the same expected in the year ahead.
5 (2) Jim McColl (60), chairman and CEO, Clyde Blowers Capital
McColl's reputation as a man with the Midas touch was strengthened further this year when his latest investment fund raised s420m and was almost twice oversubscribed. The new CBC Fund III, which will focus on Clyde Blowers specialist area of investing in industrial manufacturing businesses, didn't waste any time after closing. Finnish wind turbine parts manufacturer Moventas was acquired in a 100m deal within days.
Away from work, McColl continued to make progress towards his vision of opening Newlands Junior College, a vocational college for 14 to 16-year-olds in Glasgow.
We predict: With a bulging war chest and discussions with several potential targets already under way, we expect McColl to complete at least three significant deals in the year ahead.
First job: "Delivering fresh rolls around the houses in my local village early in the morning before going to school at age 12. In the freezing cold dark mornings, I thought, there must be easier ways to make money!"
6 (16) Martin Gilbert (57), chief executive, Aberdeen Asset Management Plc
It's been a landmark year for Gilbert, with Aberdeen Asset Management entering the FTSE 100 Index for the first time.
Assets under management fell s2bn to s182.7bn in the latest quarter, but this was robust given the choppy economic waters, with gross new business totalling s8.8bn.
Gilbert sold s2.5m shares one sixth of his stake in the business for tax planning and diversification purposes, following a 20 per cent rise in the stock over the year.
Shedding some excess pounds was his biggest non-work related achievement during the past 12 months, with more exercise and lowering his golf handicap among his targets for next year.
We predict: Little time for golf as AAM continues to grow organically while delivering for its clients and maintaining a strong balance sheet.
First job: "In my early twenties, I was a tobacco picker in America, earning the equivalent to s100 a week. I learnt I didn't want to spend the rest of my life picking tobacco."
7 (5) Rupert Soames OBE (53), chief executive, Aggreko Plc
Not only did the London Olympics generate an estimated s55m for Aggreko, but its ever-ebullient CEO also got the chance to run with the Olympic torch. After its success as the official temporary power provider to the London Games, Soames is already working on putting together a proposal for the 2016 event in Brazil, which will also be hosting the World Cup in 2014 another potential money-spinner.
While Soames says he has never worked for a business which has so much runway ahead of it, he also launched a five-year strategic review to ensure its focus is in the right places.
We predict: A slowdown in sales growth in North America in recent months has raised some eyebrows but the breadth of its global reach means Aggreko is forecast to deliver another year of solid growth.
8 (10) Sir Brian Souter (58), chief executive, Stagecoach Group Plc
With a family fortune estimated at s400m, few will blame Sir Brian for finally deciding to step down from the driving seat of the company he co-founded over 30 years ago.
The diversified nature of Stagecoach's business has enabled it to continue to meet City expectations during the year. The delay to the signing of the West Coast Mainline franchise contract with rival FirstGroup also raised the possibility that Stagecoach's joint venture with Virgin could hang on to the route.
Souter's private investment vehicle has had another active year, launching an inter-city express coach service in Poland.
We predict: While his move back to the chairman's office will see him give up much of the day-to-day responsibility at Stagecoach, Sir Brian wont be far from the front-line at the company.
First job: "Berrypicking I learned the harder you work the more you earn."
9 (11) Tim O Toole (57), chief executive, FirstGroup Plc
The news that the UK Government had put on hold the signing of a deal with FirstGroup for the West Coast Mainline franchise will have been very frustrating for the American who heads the Aberdeen transport group.
The decision to award FirstGroup the contract currently held by Sir Richard Bransons Virgin Rail operation had been seen as a major coup for OToole and a welcome boost for the company after margins were hit by a weak performance at its UK bus division.
OToole, who rose to prominence in the UK for the improvements he delivered at London Underground, turned down a bonus of more than s350,000 last year while he looks to improve the fortunes of the bus business, which is facing particularly tough trading conditions in Scotland and the north of England.
We predict: OToole's focus will be on ensuring the West Coast deal doesn't slip from FirstGroup's grasp as well as delivering rapid improvements at its UK bus division.
10 (12) David Nish (52), chief executive, Standard Life
With better-than expected profits so far this year and sector-leading shareholder returns, Nish is on something of a roll. As one analyst put it, Standard Life was shooting the lights out with its first-half results with a particularly strong performance from its UK arm, where profits jumped 62 per cent.
It has also been a good year for Nish on the personal front with both of his children graduating with first-class degrees in the same week. With his total remuneration edging past s2m last year, he wont have minded splashing out for a celebratory family meal.
We predict: While some of its rivals are struggling, Nishs stewardship of Standard Life continues to impress the City. With the company likely to be one of the main beneficiaries of the introduction of auto-enrolment for corporate pensions, another year of healthy growth is predicted.
First job: "CA trainee at Price Waterhouse – I learned always to look and listen."
11 (4) Stephen Hester (52), group chief executive, The Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc
Having been forced to forgo his bonus for two years now as a result of the banks mis-selling of payment protection insurance and, latterly, an IT failure which left millions of customers unable to access their accounts, Hester must have thought the worst was surely behind him at the 80 per cent taxpayer-owned bank.
But the bad news continues to pile up. US authorities are currently investigating the bank for its dealings with Iran, which may have breached sanctions, and an investigation into the bank's role in the fixing of inter-bank lending rates is also under way.
To top it all off, RBS is continuing to rack up huge losses s1.5bn in the first half alone, taking total losses since the 2008 banking crisis to s32.5bn. The taxpayers s45.5bn stake in RBS has nearly halved in value, with s26bn wiped out in that investment to date.
We predict: RBS will have to show huge improvements in its overall results if Hester is to stave off hostile bids for some of its better performing divisions, with Brazilian bank Itau Unibanc reported to be circling US subsidiary Citizens.
12 (18) Colin Robertson (47), chief executive officer, Alexander Dennis Ltd
Despite tough conditions in the bus industry, Robertson has overseen another strong year for the Falkirk-based manufacturer with sales up by 26 per cent to s357m as it continued to make inroads into overseas market. As well as the workforce expanding by 400 to 2200 to meet demand, strong cash flow has also seen the company move from being s36m in debt to have s9.5m in net funds.
Robertson cites encouraging and steering young people both his own children and those within the company as among key priorities for him in the year ahead.
We predict: Robertson has a simple vision for the company: to turn a good s500m Scottish business into a great billion pound global business. With significant new orders in recent months and others in the pipeline he appears on track.
First job: "As an apprentice engineer with Cummins Engines in Shotts. I learned if you are committed and driven enough you can be anything you want to be but expect a few hard knocks along the way."
13 (8) Philip Grant (46), managing director, UK wealth, and chair, Scottish Executive Committee, Lloyds Banking Group
The top man at Lloyds Banking Group in Scotland since March 2011, Grant is spearheading the campaign to get Bank of Scotland reconnected with its Scottish roots and rebuild trust in the brand. Im very clear we have a big job to do, he admitted earlier this year, adding it will be the day-to-day experience of customers rather than press releases and adverts that turn things around.
A key claim to fame in 2012 was telling Holyrood's Finance Committee the independence debate was no bad thing for promoting Scotland to international investors.
His approach to customer and community engagement is to walk the walk, including an 85-mile bike ride from Annan to Dunlop in southern Scotland for Save the Children, the groups charity of the year.
We predict: Grant will be focused on ensuring Lloyds Banking Group plays a full part in the economic recovery of Scotland, as well as bedding down the changes that the arrival of the Retail Distribution Review will have on the investment advice market.
First job: "Selling cream door to door for three years from the age of 14. I learned that sales is tough, you sell more when you are very wet and you should care for your customer."
LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD
14 (125) Boyd Tunnock CBE (79), managing director, Thomas Tunnock Ltd
The boss of the iconic Teacake and Caramel Wafer manufacturer shows no sign of easing up as he approaches his 80th birthday on January 13 next year.
Exports are set to rise by around 50 per cent to s7m thanks to a new contract with a South African supermarket and its biggest overseas customer continues to be Saudi Arabia.
Always looking for new ways of improving productivity, Tunnock recently installed a new machine which can wrap 600 Caramel Wafers a minute some 60 years after they were created by his late father Archie.
Unfortunately for the First Minister, who loves his products, Tunnock has declared himself a unionist and doesnt want Scotland to stand alone.
We predict: Tunnock recently said he does not plan to retire properly until he is 100 so don't count on changes at the top. Expect more export successes and further production improvements.
First job: "Making cake boxes in my fathers bakery. I asked a girl if she liked working for Tunnocks. She said yes but your father doesnt pay us enough! Last time I asked that question."
PUBLIC SECTOR LEADER OF THE YEAR
15 (25=) Dr Mike Cantlay (48), chairman, VisitScotland
It's been a breathtaking year for Cantlay, with no sign of the excitement easing off any time soon. VisitScotland launched its biggest ever global marketing campaign, working alongside Disney to promote Scottish tourism on the back of Pixars Brave movie. VisitScotland's activity alone should leverage an extra s140m of spend into Scottish tourism. Alongside the s2bn of investment under way in key visitor attractions across Scotland, the launch of a s2m conference bid fund and Olympics-related activity, preparations are also under way for the Year of Natural Scotland 2013 and the next Year of Homecoming, Commonwealth Games and Ryder Cup in 2014.
We predict: Cantlay loves golf and would like to visit as many Scottish courses as he can next year. Not much hope of this with another year of flagship tourism events and headlines.
First job: "Store boy and shop assistant in my dads shop. I was six and paid 4p an hour. I negotiated and next year won a 25 per cent increase to 5p an hour! But I learned what it was like to work hard for a pay packet at the end of the week sadly spent on car and plane magazines and, most importantly, the thrill and satisfaction of serving customers."
16 (35) Roger White (47), chief executive officer, AG Barr Plc
As we went to press White was in merger talks with drinks giant Britvic which, they claim, would create one of Europe's largest soft drinks companies. Under the proposals White would be chief executive of the whole group though it was not clear whether the headquarters would be in Scotland or England.
Meanwhile rubbish weather and record rainfall failed to take the fizz out of AG Barr's performance, with underlying profits up six per cent last year and sales expected to be ahead 4.5 per cent to s130m at the half-year stage.
We predict: The merger looks set to happen so the big question for Scotland is whether a new larger group is good for the company's long-term future and what it means for operations north of the border.
YOUNG BUSINESS LEADER OF THE YEAR
17 (NEW) Mike Welch (34), founder & managing director, Blackcircles.com
Welch has not only signed up former Tesco chief executive Terry Leahy as an investor but is also in partnership with the retailing giant to sell tyres online. The Edinburgh-based company he started up in 2002 now has turnover of around s18m, sells around 325 million tyres a year, employs 60 staff and works with 1300 independent garages. The company ended 2011 with its debut advert on Sky TV.
We predict: Welch, who left school and 16 and trained as a tyre fitter, has plenty of scope for further growth especially with one of the UKs foremost retailers as an advisor.
18 (51) Keith Anderson (48), chief corporate officer, ScottishPower and CEO, ScottishPower Renewables
His first full year at the helm of the Glasgow-based utility has seen father-of-four Anderson play a high-profile role in pressing the industry's case amid plans for major changes to the UK electricity market and renewables subsidies.
The past year has been a tough one for ScottishPower and its rivals due to a combination of falling power demand due to the recession and high wholesale gas prices. Pre-tax profits in 2011 fell to s87.2m for 2011 against s733.2m for 2010. But plans for a new s100m headquarters building in Scotland have underlined Spanish parent Iberdrola's long-term commitment to the business.
We predict: With a multi-billion investment programme in network upgrades and new renewables to oversee, Anderson is set for a big year ahead.
First job: "Working in a shoe shop for 79p per hour. Learnt the value of money and the importance of customer service."
19 (28) Dr Lena C Wilson (48), chief executive, Scottish Enterprise
Dr Wilson found herself in the headlines for all the wrong reasons in June when it was announced she would take a second job worth s55,000 a year for 12 days work as a board member of consumer goods testing firm Intertek a company in which Scottish Enterprise (SE) had previously invested. SE chairman Crawford Gillies argued the role would build on the commercial awareness and expertise she already has and boost her credibility even further when dealing with business leaders.
Wilson says her greatest achievement over the past 12 months was seeing Scotland top the foreign direct investment table in the UK, backed by a June report from Ernst & Young showing Scotland had topped the table for the second year running and was the top performing UK location for foreign investment, bringing 6,000 new jobs last year a 50 per cent increase on the previous year.
We predict: With Scottish Enterprise pledging in March to support 400 more firms with significant growth potential in the next three years as part of a wider business plan aiming to create 35,000 new jobs in Scotland by 2015, the pressure will be on Wilson to deliver on those promises.
First job: "A Saturday job in a hairdressers where I learned to make a good cup of tea and that great service was rewarded with a (small) tip."
20 (NEW) Jayne-Anne Gadhia (50), chief executive, Virgin Money
Overnight Gadhia has become the CEO of a substantial player in the financial services world with the acquisition of rescued bank Northern Rock. She now oversees 2200 staff in Newcastle, 200 in its Edinburgh headquarters, 150 in Norwich and 100 in London. The 75 Northern Rock branches have all been rebranded as Virgin Money and Gadhia has the advantage of having one of the best publicists in the world, Sir Richard Branson, as her boss to help her win new customers, though she is a charmer herself.
We predict: Gadhia will focus on creating a fresh culture and building up confidence in her workforce as well as supplying customers old and new with what are promised to be fair and transparent products.
21= (29=) Sir Arnold Clark (84), chairman and chief executive, Arnold Clark Automobiles Ltd
21= (29=) Eddie Hawthorne (45), managing director, Arnold Clark Automobiles Ltd
Keeping their feet firmly on the gas, Sir Arnold and his ambitious managing director Eddie Hawthorne seem oblivious to world recession and continue to motor ahead, consolidating the groups position as Europe's largest independently owned and family-run motor dealer. Aggressive expansion has continued with new dealerships opening in Kendal and Morecambe and the acquisition of Volkswagen dealerships in Glasgow and Wishaw. At the time of going to press, the firm has just completed the takeover of Grangemouth-based John R Weir, one of Scotlands biggest motor dealers.
Added to Sir Arnolds trophy cabinet this year were accolades including Retailer of the Year, top motor industry Brit, and most viewed dealer website.
We predict: This duo and their team of 8000 will continue to find new and innovative ways to sell cars, despite the toughening retail climate.
22 (39) Sir Willie Haughey OBE (56), executive chairman, City Refrigeration Holdings (UK) Ltd
Receiving a knighthood for services to business and philanthropy made this a milestone year for the City Refrigeration boss, who already has an OBE. Sir Willie was honoured, privileged and humbled to receive his knighthood but predicts his biggest achievement is yet to come.
The business employs 10,500 and turns over s230m providing facilities management, construction and engineering services.
Sir Willies charitable trust has donated more than s5m in three years, mainly to Scottish charities focusing on youth opportunities, homelessness and health.
We predict: Intense competition and pressure on budgets may lead to some housekeeping in the business over the coming year, while Haughey's charitable efforts will focus on getting young people into work.
23 (91) Stephen Halliday (48), chief executive, Wood Mackenzie Ltd
Halliday is hardly a household name in Scotland yet he heads one of Scotland's most successful companies. In July, Wood Mackenzie which carries out research in energy, mining and metals changed hands in a deal valuing it at s1.1bn, giving Halliday and 340 members of staff who own shares in WoodMac a s90m windfall, with an average pay-out of around s250,000. Private equity firm Hellman & Friedman, which bought a 63 per cent stake from Charterhouse Capital Partners, were happy to leave Halliday, in charge.
We predict: Further expansion for WoodMac, which is currently recruiting more than 100 employees to take its staff total to 900 people by the end of the year. It already operates in 21 offices across the world from Australia to Russia. No flotation yet but it could be an option for the future.
24 (17) Sharon Munro (39), chief executive, Barrhead Travel
Scotland's largest independent travel group continued to expand last year, making its first foray into England with the opening of a new call centre at Barrow-in-Furness. Munro, whose father Bill founded the firm in 1975, said this was the highlight of her year and pledged to continue opening new branches and franchises.
The appeal of sunspots like Spain, Majorca and the Canary Islands helped fuel a 20 per cent surge in first-quarter sales, with Barrhead projecting a turnover of s155m for the year.
The company won the Best Employer gong at this years Scottish Business Awards and is investing s700,000 in creating jobs for 50 young apprentices across Scotland.
We predict: The opening up of new markets as Barrhead expands its international presence.
First job: "It was as a Saturday girl at Barrhead Travel, stamping brochures, filing, tidying up and being a general Girl Friday. It taught me to get stuck in and get my hands dirty and that if I wanted to get on in life, Id need to work my way up the career ladder purely on merit."
25 (30) Katherine Garrett-Cox (44), chief executive and chief investment officer, Alliance Trust
Seeing off another challenge from rebel shareholder Laxey Partners at its AGM was a major victory for the Dundee investment giant. But while hedge fund Laxey was defeated in its moves to force major changes, it was another stormy meeting with a number of investors voicing dissatisfaction over Garrett-Coxs s1m pay package.
Garrett-Cox has argued that the changes she has brought in during her four years at the helm of the company are starting to bear significant fruit. The trusts recent showing supports that with the latest two quarters seeing it maintain above-average performance compared with its peers the first time in a decade it has done so.
We predict: It has been a rough ride for Garrett-Cox of late but with the Laxey thorn now out of her side, she will be focused on continuing to improve performance.
26 (33) Lady Susan Rice (66), managing director, Lloyds Banking Group, Scotland
Lady Susan has made it her mission to help restore trust in bankers and banking and lists her top 2012 highlight as gaining commitment from the chairmen or chief executives of the UK's biggest banks to adopt a common code of professional conduct. This is being developed by the Chartered Banker Professional Standards Board of which Rice is founding chair and the Chartered Banker Institute.
Another highlight was being invited to speak at the Chilean governments national renewables conference.
Her biggest non-related work achievement was taking ownership of a rather rambunctious collie puppy with a fondness for chasing foxes.
We predict: More announcements on professional conduct and the campaign to rehabilitate bankers in the eyes of regulators, government and customers.
First job: "As a bio-medical researcher at Yale-New Haven, I learned that you need to work hard to achieve success, listen well in order to learn, and recognise everyone whose work has contributed."
27 (96) Sir Peter Housden (61), permanent secretary, Scottish Government
Most of the stories about Sir Peter during the year were on the tired subject of accusing him of being biased towards the SNP-controlled Scottish Government and not being impartial. For him it was business as usual as he helped to secure a successful conclusion to work on the Calman Report and the Scotland Bill, now the Scotland Act 2012. He also helped to strengthen the role of a cross-public sector leadership group the Scottish Leaders Forum in driving the future shape of public services in Scotland in response to the Christie Commission.
We predict: A hectic year for Sir Peter as the Scottish Government starts preparing the way for its planned referendum with firm details of the real implications of independence for Scotland.
First job: "Working as a farm labourer for 12 pence an hour. It taught me the advantages of mechanisation and having a good breakfast."
28 (36) Eric Herd (55), chairman and managing director, Farmfoods Ltd
Frozen food retailer Farmfoods has proven to be a resilient performer on the high street in recent years as rising inflation has forced many consumers to seek out bargains on their weekly shop. Last year saw Cumbernauld-based Farmfoods post a s20m rise in turnover to s578m, having only broken the s500m sales barrier for the first time the previous year, while profits rose 43 per cent to s24.4m.
Buoyed by its recent run of financial success, the group was reported to have prepared a joint s1.4bn bid with Asda to buy out rival Iceland, which fell through because Asda would have been forced to sell 200 of its stores to Farmfoods to meet competition rules.
Farmfoods has more recently felt the ire of already embattled dairy farmers, who pledged to target the group indefinitely after the retailer announced plans to cut two pence off the price of a litre of milk, a situation which was far from resolved as Insider went to press.
We predict: Herd clearly outlined his intention to expand the Farmfoods chain last year with his joint bid with Asda for Iceland. Given the potential size of that deal, he is evidently ambitious to consolidate Farmfoods presence on the UK high street, though his search may extend beyond the UK in the hunt for an established store network.
29 (42=) John Langlands (60), chief executive, British Polythene Industries PLC
Prolific demand for polythene across sectors from food to farming helps Greenock-based BPI turn in a solid performance year after year and 2012 was little different. A one per cent fall in half-year profits to s14.8m was resilient given the challenging conditions and a seven per cent fall in sales to s273m. The company said it had seen poorer demand from some industrial customers. At the last full year, profits were up 20 per cent on the back of strong orders from food producers.
Langlands joined BPI in 1994 and has helped chairman Cameron McLatchie build it into one of the largest producers of polythene film products worldwide. Product innovation has been key. It supplies over 275,000 tonnes of polythene each year, and recycles or reprocesses 80,000 tonnes of UK waste.
We predict: Price pressure will affect performance, although the financials will remain broadly stable. With his 60th birthday approaching, Langlands may have one eye on a succession plan.
30 (38) Audrey Baxter (51), executive chairman, WA Baxter & Sons (Holdings) Ltd
Despite challenging conditions, the soups-to-jam group served up a third successive year of earnings growth this year, with a six per cent rise in pre-tax profits to s7m on turnover down three per cent to s126m.
After an acquisition in Canada and two in Australia, the Fochabers-based group snapped up the iconic UK Fray Bentos brand. This is predicted to add s35m to turnover and create 125 jobs as production moves from Suffolk to Speyside.
Baxter, who is granddaughter of the company's founder, said the business continued to invest in developing innovative new products but was not immune to poor consumer demand on the high street.
We predict: Heightened efforts to step up Baxters presence overseas but a drop-off in UK investment, and continued innovation in areas including fresh soup, packaging and merchandising.
31 (19) Fiona McBain (51), chief executive, Scottish Friendly Group
McBain led Glasgow-based Scottish Friendly to its third consecutive year of double-digit growth last year, with sales up 16 per cent as a result of considerable investment in its online presence and its partnership programme with the likes of Admiral and Royal London. The 150-year-old mutual society saw sales at its regular premium business rise by seven per cent to s6.6m and single premium sales by 25 per cent to s8.5m.
Since stepping into the role of chief executive in 2008, McBain has managed to steer the mutual to growth through the worst of the financial crisis adopting two basic principles prudent capital management and constantly driving for efficiencies.
We predict: McBains faith in driving sales through an improvement in the mutual's online offering has reaped rewards so far, and recent tie-ups with UK parenting website Emmas Diary are proving lucrative. McBain has promised further new exciting ventures over the course of the year.
First job: "Working in a newsagents, where I learnt you can influence the behaviour of others through your own demeanour if you smile at the customers they are much more likely to smile at you!"
32 (40) David Moulsdale (43), chairman and CEO, Optical Express Ltd
There is no end to Moulsdales ambition to grow Optical Express, which already has 180 stores across Europe employing 3000. Confounding the economic gloom, he is investing another s350m in 24 new consultation clinics across the UK, creating 100 new jobs in Scotland. This will make laser eye surgery available to 10 per cent of UK consumers who would previously have had to travel over 30 miles. Moulsdale's aim is to provide everyone in the UK and Ireland with access to a laser eye surgery clinic near their home. Helping him in this task are the doughty figures of former First Minister Jack McConnell and former PwC executive chair Frank Blin, who joined the board this year.
We predict: Increasing demand for laser eye surgery will help Optical Express side-step the woes of other High Street brands.
33 (98) Iain McGeoch (66), chairman, Mackays Stores Ltd t/a M&Co
The fifty-year-old M&Co store chain has continued its upward trajectory in a retail renaissance for what was formerly Mackays Drapers to become one of Scotland's largest independent fashion retailers. The company operates 285 stores across the UK employing 3,500 people and generated sales of s186.9m last year.
Sales have also been lifted by strong growth in its online retail offering, which has grown at such a pace the group added a 50,000 sq ft warehouse extension at its Renfrewshire HQ to cope with demand.
A second store opened in Dubai last July is the first step in a wider expansion plan to launch 50 international franchise stores globally in the next five years 30 of which will be within the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC). Current plans also include expanding the franchise network in Serbia, Russia, Ukraine, India and China as well as South America and North Africa.
The fashion group also launched the first of four planned concession stores within the House of Fraser chain in August.
We predict: McGeoch has proven to be a business leader who excels in times of crisis the ambitious expansion plans for the group come from painful lessons learned in unsuccessful ventures into the US and Poland in the eighties and nineties so perhaps hell fare better this time round.
34 (9) Colin Temple (50), managing director, Schuh Ltd
Schuh's first full year under American owners Genesco has seen it make further progress on the UK high street where it now has 64 stores and 14 concessions. It also announced its first proper move into the international market with plans to launch a French version of its website.
Despite the s125m Genesco deal making Temple a multi-millionaire, he continues to be very hands-on at the company. Temple cites having the respect of those you work with as the key attribute of a leader, something both himself and fellow Schuh executive Mark Crutchley will enjoy in spades after they ensured staff were handsomely rewarded under the takeover.
We predict: It has been a hectic time for Temple and Schuh over the past year or so he lists spending a bit more time with his family as his top priority outside work over the next year.
First job: "I was a butchers boy at 12 years old and it taught me that if you look after the pennies the pounds look after themselves."
35 (41) Ian Curle (51), chief executive officer, The Edrington Group Ltd
With so many emerging economies now discovering a love for Scotch whisky, the industry is hitting a boom which Edrington Group has been very much at the forefront of. Although sales were down on the previous years 18 per cent growth, Edrington posted turnover of s556.1m for the year to March 31, with margins on premium brands sold in overseas markets lifting pre-tax profits five per cent to s148.8m. The group also reduced net debt by s52.5m to s463.5m at the year end.
The group's malts, which include Highland Park and The Macallan, have been particularly successful, with profits from The Macallan up 40 per cent in 2011.
With improved distribution through acquisition in the huge Chinese market, Edrington is positioning itself to capitalise on continuing strong demand for the whisky globally.
We predict: Curle said on his appointment as the new chairman of the Scotch Whisky Association last December his ambition is to advance Scotch whisky exports globally by taking steps to protect the integrity of the brand in overseas markets. His success in this role will serve to also lift export sales yet further for Edrington Group.
36 (24) Philip Day (47), chairman and chief executive, Edinburgh Woollen Mill (Group) Ltd, The
Privately-owned Edinburgh Woollen Mill (EWM) has remained a dominant force on a high street littered with business failures, with the firm announcing in February it had agreed to buy 338 stores, 57 concessions, three distribution centres and the head office of fashion retailer Peacocks, saving 6000 of the 9100 jobs within the group. The deal provided EWM with a huge step up in expansion, and Day said he intends to rebuild the business in what is a very tough economic environment for high street retailers in the UK.
We predict: With Days specialism in turning around distressed retail businesses, he may be courted to look at plenty more targets in the year ahead. However, with a huge job ahead of him consolidating the Peacocks business, turning it around and increasing Edinburgh Woollen Mills young fashion offering, he may find his hands full for some time to come.
37 (44) Lord Robert Smith of Kelvin (68), chairman, Weir Group Plc; SSE Plc; Glasgow 2014 Ltd Commonwealth Games Organising Committee; UK Green Investment Bank
As if he didn't have enough to do chairing two of Scotlands biggest companies and overseeing the largest sports event Glasgow has ever staged, Lord Smith added the new Edinburgh-based Green Investment Bank to his portfolio in April.
The bank, whose mission is to accelerate private sector investment in the green economy with s3bn in the kitty, is set to officially launch this month.
After the huge success of the Olympics Lord Smith is now under pressure to make sure the 2014 Commonwealth Games are up to the mark. The committee already faces the issue of whether to appoint G4S to handle security after it provided one of the few bits of negative publicity when it failed to recruit enough staff to guard the Olympics.
We predict: A very demanding year ahead for Lord Smith with shareholders of SSE and Weir wanting to make sure they continue performing well and a huge amount of work to be done by the Green Bank and games committee.
38 (75) Professor sir Jim McDonald, principal and vice-chancellor, University of Strathclyde
The decision to honour the professor with a knighthood for his service to education, engineering and economy was a popular one. The human dynamo has put Strathclyde firmly at the centre of the renewable energy research map in Scotland though, to his credit, he is spreading the benefits which can clearly be seen in his role as chair of the cross-University Energy Technology Partnership. His workload is enormous he is also a member of Scottish Enterprises board and the chair of Glasgow Economic Leadership but he takes it in his stride.
We predict: Sir Jim will push hard for Scotland to keep up the momentum in renewables. At the same time he has to make sure its new s89m flagship Technology and Innovation Centre, which revolutionises the way researchers in academia and industry collaborate and innovate together, is completed on time and on budget.
39 (45) Professor Sir Timothy OShea (62), principal and vice-chancellor, University of Edinburgh
With public sector funding in decline, Sir Timothy is leading a multi-faceted campaign to build new strategic relationships and sources of income from the UK and overseas for the 430-year-old university. Over the last year these have included to name but two establishing a new China research centre in collaboration with Peking University and joining prestigious US institutions including Stanford and Princeton on the influential Coursera project, which delivers university courses online.
Other roles for Hamburg-born Sir Tim this year include serving as deputy president of the French Governments Initiatives d'Excellence en Formations Innovantes (IDEFI) and being a member of the Strategy Commission for the German Governments Excellenzinitiative.
We predict: The development of a new Holyrood campus, including a s110m project to provide student accommodation for 1160 postgraduates, and the Scottish Government-backed creation of a new Cultural Diplomacy Academy at the university, will help inspire new projects and partnerships.
40 (13) Adrian Grace (49), chief executive officer, AEGON UK
Grace has his work cut out with a major restructuring programme to reduce the insurance groups overall cost base by 25 per cent. Massive regulatory change is also immiment with the implementation at the end of the year of the Retail Distribution Review, which will change the way consumers get financial advice. Performance is heading in the right direction though, with latest underlying earnings before tax up from s9m to s20m and new at retirement and workplace savings products helping to drive growth.
In his spare time Grace, who celebrates his 50th birthday next year, still managed the 375km Scottish Coast to Coast bike ride for AEGON UKs charities.
We predict: Grace is optimistic about next year and says his top priority is meeting customers needs for financial security and making AEGON a company its employees are proud to work for. A continued return to profitability will help support his plans.
First job: "A paper-round. I learned you don't get paid much for carrying a heavy bag but, on the plus side, an ability to provide customer service with a smile usually leads to sizeable Christmas tips!"
41 (20) David Thorburn (54), chief executive UK, Clydesdale Bank Plc
Thorburn has taken on a troubleshooting role this year with the decision to axe 1400 jobs from Clydesdale and Yorkshire banks. In August he stepped down from parent group National Australia Banks Melbourne-based executive committee to focus on the UK turnaround. Thorburn had previously been travelling back to Australia six times a year and dealing with teleconferences in different time zones.
The bank said ongoing weakness in the UK economy meant its commercial property loans were continuing to deteriorate and that bad and doubtful debts remained elevated. Thorburn, who will continue to report to the groups chief executive, Cameron Clyne, said the bank was moving forward with its strategy to become a stronger and more competitive business following the strategic review.
We predict: Tough times ahead for Thorburn and the possibility of another management shake-up as competition intensifies and the economy continues to look shaky.
42 (67) Paul Dollman (56), group finance director, John Menzies Plc
Logistics group John Menzies reported strong first-half results in August with underlying operating profits up s1m on the previous year to s27.9m.
In March, Menzies Aviation secured a new five-year contract with British Airways to handle around 19,500 flights a year out of Edinburgh, Glasgow and Manchester.
Last year the group reported a 31 per cent rise in pre-tax profits to s39.4m, lifted by a 31 per cent rise in profits from its aviation division now the groups largest profit and cash contributor which operates across 131 airports in 29 countries.
However, in August Menzies announced plans to end cargo handling at Birmingham, East Midlands, Glasgow and Manchester airports, which will result in one-off costs of around s3m, as a result of a drop in demand for goods transportation in the UK. Menzies will maintain two smaller operations at Aberdeen and Belfast as it seeks to return the UK cargo operation to growth and profitability.
We predict: With cargo handling accounting for 24 per cent of Menzies aviation revenues, falling cargo volumes will remain a concern. The distribution division has restructured to drive efficiencies, though may struggle to maintain last years performance. A total of 50 new aviation contracts were secured last year which will generate s41m a year should ensure Menzies financial performance remains on track.
43 (26) Stefan King (50), managing director, G1 Group Plc
The threat of triple dip recession hasn't stopped leisure entrepreneur King expanding his G1 Group empire, which already has more than 40 venues across Scotland including bars, restaurants, clubs, hotels and cinemas.
With a voracious appetite for expansion and innovation, the group snapped up BBC Scotland's flagship former Queen Margaret Drive headquarters last November for an undisclosed sum. The building, which was part of a much larger site sold by the BBC to developers for s18m in 2008, is now being redeveloped as the head office for G1 and will house about 100 staff.
In February the group also made its first foray into Ayrshire with the acquisition of East Ayrshire Councils former trading standards offices for a food-led venue.
We predict: King might be kept busy for a while with planning and redevelopment issues at Queen Margaret Drive, but will always have one eye on the next strategic acquisition.
44 (32) Archie Bethel (59), chief executive, marine and technology division, Babcock International Group Plc
Bethel had good cause to celebrate as Babcock International Group entered the FTSE 100 for the first time. Eight years ago it had a market cap of just s300m now its worth s3.3bn.
His division saw growth of more than six per cent, driven by higher activity levels in the submarine and warship support programmes and continued growth overseas. Meanwhile the high-profile work of assembling the first of the UK Navy's two new massive 65,000-ton aircraft carriers, HMS Queen Elizabeth, at Rosyth continued without any major hitches.
We predict: A lot of travel for Bethel as he works to develop opportunities in Canada, Australia and Brazil.
He is aiming to get fitter and live healthier during the next year and support his beloved Rangers in their battle to get back to the Scottish Premier League.
First job: "Summer job working as labourer in Ravenscraig Steelworks. If you think life's tough at the top, its even tougher at the bottom."
45 (15) John Reid (46), general manager & director, Michelin Tyre Plc,
Elation at winning tens of millions in new investment for the Dundee plant and getting the green light to recruit new staff to take its workforce to 860 was dampened in the summer when Michelin was hit by a slump in demand and had to shut production down for three weeks. Nevertheless the achievement cannot be taken away from Reid, who won the confidence of the French-based parent companies after increasing daily output at the plant by almost 20 per cent.
We predict: Reid's challenge is to create a flexible model that can cope with the extreme volatility of the European tyre market whilst remaining productive and cost effective. Not an easy task but Reid has done all the right things to date.
First job: "Working for an industrial scale refrigeration company in Glasgow. I was a first year engineering student and I learned how exciting it could be to draw something on a big, old-fashioned board and then see it built in front of your eyes. My passion for engineering suddenly became real."
46= (31=) Martin Dickie (30), co-founder and director, BrewDog Plc
46= (31=) James Watt (30), head of stuff, BrewDog Plc
Failing to conform has delivered a record performance in 2012 for Watt and Dickie, whose innovative craft beers and subversive marketing have helped establish them as Scotland's largest independent brewery. The business has just announced a 200 per cent increase in sales to s12m, a new s8m brewing facility and the opening of three new bars, creating 40 jobs.
This is an environment for the innovators, for the misfits and the mavericks, Watt said of the economic crisis. Last year the duo raised s2.2m from 6000 fanvestors in an innovative Equity for Punks scheme.
We predict: Beer is arguably one of the best places to be when the economy heads south, and under the clever marketing there is real substance to BrewDog's products and numbers. Expect more of the same.
47 (52) John Brodie (48), chief executive officer, Scottish Midland Co-operative Society Ltd
Brodie managed an impressive 13 per cent rise in sales for Scotmid for the year to January 2012, with turnover rising to s427m, though the bulk of those gains came from its 2010 acquisition of the Botterills convenience store chain. Profit looked less rosy, down from s9.1m the previous year to s6.5m for the year to January 2012, largely as a result of higher operating costs pushing down margins.
The society admitted the economic downturn had created significant challenges as consumers continue to cut back on spending.
Brodie said the integration of the 51 Botterills stores was a real highlight last year, growing the societys food store network in Scotland to 190 in total. However the SemiChem side of the business has been hard hit through the downturn, particularly in Northern Ireland as a result of a reduction in cross-border trading and a rise in VAT.
We predict: Brodie has hinted the group is still on the acquisition trail, though the focus will be on growing the food side of the business, and has also stated measures will be implemented in an effort to improve the fortunes of SemiChem.
48= (55=) Jim Walker, joint managing director, Walkers Shortbread Ltd
48= (55=) Joe Walker (73), joint managing director, Walkers Shortbread Ltd
Arguably the biggest challenge for the Walkers remains the price of raw materials because they insist on using the best ingredients in their legendary shortbread. They are due to announce their latest results this month but last time reported a nine per cent decrease in profits to s8.9m because poor weather had pushed up food prices. Will it be a case of deja vu this year after some months of heavy rain? Their sales continue to grow around the world as their popularity spreads, particularly in new markets like China.
We predict: Expect to see further growth despite a difficult trading environment.
49 (56) Andrew Malcolm (50), group chief executive, Malcolm Group Ltd
The family-owned haulage contracting and construction services group, which employs more than 1900 people, saw a healthy rise in its latest published profits from s5.3m to s7.5m despite a fall in turnover from s165m to s154m.
Malcolm's big challenge has been reshaping his company's construction division, which was hit by the contraction of the market. He is pushing the innovation side of that business, including subsidiary Charles Lawrence Surfaces, which is an innovator in synthetic sport surfacing, and Woodholme Construction, which specialises in laser-controlled paving.
We predict: Malcolm will keep ahead of his rivals by being innovative. But don't expect him to tell them or the media what he is up to as he prefers to keep a low profile.
50 (60) Sue Bruce (57), chief executive, The City of Edinburgh Council
In her first 18 months at Edinburgh Bruce has had her work cut out settling down the controversial tram project and dealing with a scandal over statutory roof repairs. Having tackled the mammoth task of turning around the finances at Aberdeen City Council in her last job, Bruce is seen as a safe pair of hands and has faced the challenges with unflustered efficiency. She now has her sights set firmly on tackling youth unemployment and boosting business growth and in September oversaw the launch of an ambitious new five-year economic strategy that will lay the foundations for the next ten years.
We predict: A growing emphasis on preventative economic development, innovative strategic partnerships and new ways of delivering policy as all councils seek to do more with less.
51 (61) Bryan Donaghey (51), managing director, Diageo Scotland Ltd
Donaghey is in the enviable position of being able to spend s1bn in the next five years on expanding the drinks giants operations in Scotland. He is working out where to site two new distilleries, each of which will be the same the size as the s40m Roseisle plant on Speyside which was opened two years ago, as well as making plans for more warehousing in Fife and Clackmannanshire. It is also expanding existing distilleries with the aim of growing whisky making capacity by 50 per cent.
In August the group reported 11 per cent profits growth with spirits driving it. However, there is a cloud on the horizon with Donagheys boss Paul Walsh attacking the Scottish and UK governments over their plans to introduce minimum pricing for alcohol, which he claims may cause governments in key overseas markets to raise tariffs and hit Diageos exports.
We predict: Another good year for Donaghey and Diageo as it expands exports to fast growth countries in the Far East and South America.
52 (63) Donald Macdonald (65), executive chairman, Macdonald Hotels & Resorts Ltd
It's not the easiest of times for the founder of Scotland's biggest hotel group with corporate spending way down below its heady peaks in the mid-Noughties. But the leisure side is growing and his partner, Lloyds Banking Group, which owns half the business, was happy for him to invest s10m this year in some of its 40 properties and ten resorts across the UK and in Spain.
We predict: The key to the groups future lies in the refinancing of its s341m debt facility with Lloyds, which has to be signed by September next year. It has the advantage of a strong portfolio of hotels but needs to make sure its management is up to the mark to squeeze as much profit as it can out of them.
53 (64) Michelle Mone OBE (41), founder & co-owner, MJM International Ltd
The latest addition to Mones business empire, a range of beauty products carrying the Ultimo name, was launched during the year and secured listings in stores including Harrods, Selfridges and John Lewis. But fierce trading conditions took their toll on the companys latest annual figures with sales at MJM International down from s10.1m to s8.3m. Investment in new products contributed to profits falling to s105,000 from s795,000.
A high-profile split from her husband has made it a difficult year in Mones personal life. She lists keeping fit, feeling good and making more time to relax among her top personal priorities.
We predict: The collapse of La Senza highlighted the tough conditions in the lingerie sector but Mone continues to prove resilient in the face of adversity. With a string of new product launches in the pipeline, Mone wont be far from the headlines again.
First job: "My first job was the same as most, a paper round, except I had other children in the area working for me. I learnt a lot leadership, organisation and customer service."
54 (65) Peter Lawwell (53), chief executive, Celtic Plc
Lawwell watched from the sidelines as Celtics biggest rival, Rangers, imploded as a result of years of financial mismanagement. The result saw Rangers oldco move towards liquidation and a new entity beginning life in the third division.
The loss of Old Firm fixtures between the Glasgow clubs has already pushed television revenues down, and corporate hospitality may also suffer. However Celtics progression to the Champions League group stages guarantees at least s10m in revenue and, as a result, the club can maintain its present wage bill.
We predict: With Celtic now looking ahead to years of European football, Lawwell may set his sights on offsetting a longer term decline in SPL gate numbers and putting Celtic on a sound financial footing. The lesson to be learned from the collapse of Rangers, who racked up huge debts and collapsed pursing European riches, may see Celtic strengthen its team from player sales as opposed to debt. Celtic's net debt was around s7m at the year end, and guaranteed European cash this year may leave the club debt-free to fund development from cash generated.
55 (66) Calum Paterson, managing partner, Scottish Equity Partners
During the year Paterson got back on the judo mat and maybe that fighting spirit explained why he surprised the market when he declared an interest in bidding for listed company IndigoVision, in which SEP had been an investor for many years, after its founder and chief executive Oliver Vellacott was ousted. However SEP withdrew its interest at the eleventh hour after failing to win over its board.
It was a busy year for Paterson and his colleagues who raised s200m for its latest growth equity fund and started a new s95m energy fund in partnership with energy giant SSE which acquired nine companies from SSE Ventures portfolio.
He recently reported that progress across its portfolio of 30 companies had been encouraging, despite challenging economic conditions, and signed up former Scottish Government Minister Wendy Alexander as a non-executive director.
We predict: Paterson will be on the look out for new investments and hoping he will get a lucrative exit or two to encourage more investors. He is planning to recruit new executives for its London and Glasgow offices and establish a presence in Ireland.
First job: "A paperboy. Learned never to read The Sun or the Daily Telegraph."
56 (54) Craig Anderson (53), senior partner, Scotland, KPMG
In an increasingly tough and competitive climate Anderson succeeded in getting the Scottish arm of the Big Four accountancy firm back into growth. Across the UK the firm is reducing job numbers to cut costs, which rose by eight per cent in the firms latest published accounts for the year ending September 30, 2011. Revenues rose eight per cent but profits fell four per cent.
Anderson had success in the dealmaking field and is looking to the energy sector in Aberdeen for further growth but generally the market is challenging.
His biggest non-work achievement was helping his firm raise more than s75,000 in Scotland for the Barnardos charity.
We predict: Anderson aims to achieve even more with less. With hard work and an element of luck he will succeed.
First job: "Working in the back of a butchers shop. I learned that some knives are very sharp!"
57 (47) John Robertson (56), managing director, Burntisland Fabrications Ltd
Robertsonss BiFab recently announced plans to create a total of 450 new jobs, more than doubling its workforce.
The Fife firm secured two contracts worth s140m with Premier Oil to make structures for an oil production platform for the Solan oilfield, west of Shetland, bringing 350 new jobs at its sites in Fife and the Isle of Lewis. It then announced a new s47m platform jacket contract for the Cygnus gas field in the southern North Sea, which will add another 100 new jobs.
BiFab has successfully diversified into marine energy, though Robertson predicts renewables wont reach their potential work-wise until around 2016.
SSE, which bought a 15 per cent stake in BiFab in 2010, announced plans in May to invest hundreds of millions of pounds in a new foundry next to Methil docks to make cast-metal components for wind turbines. However, as a result of a slowdown in wind farm development globally, this plan may be a few years off being realised.
We predict: North Sea development is booming, putting BiFab in a strong position to grow further in the coming year. Robertson says this work will help bridge the gap and allow it to train and retain a skilled workforce ready for the next boom in renewables.
58 (111) Professor Anton Muscatelli (50), principal, University of Glasgow
Muscatelli has had to do a lot of bridge building with staff after a survey found a big jump in dissatisfaction following a major shake-up of the university to get its finances in order. His bold move to reduce nine faculties to four colleges was dubbed over ambitious in an internal report and s20m of cuts resulting in 264 staff taking redundancy obviously took their toll.
However, there was also good news with the university rising seven places to 15th in a league of the best UK universities just one place behind archrival Edinburgh.
We predict: With the changes behind him Muscatelli can now concentrate on major investments which he has plans to undertake.
59 (57) Robert Graham (41), managing director, Graham's Family Dairy Ltd
Scotlands largest independent dairy company has found itself immersed in a milk pricing war which is pushing dairy farmers to the limits. Grahams has also been counting the cost of aggressive pricing by supermarkets as they look to entice customers through the doors with loss-making essentials like milk and bread.
The results speak for themselves, with pre-tax profits down 42.5 per cent to s604,000 despite turnover rising by 20 per cent to s49.6m.
In May the Bridge of Allan-based company announced plans to downgrade its Nairn dairy processing unit to a distribution centre with the loss of 13 jobs.
We predict: Were a larger dairy conglomerate to come in with a bid for Grahams anything like as lucrative as that offered by German giant Mxller to buy up Robert Wiseman Dairies, it would be difficult to see how the Graham family could refuse.
60 (58) Rob Woodward (52), chief executive, STV Group plc
Woodward will be happy STV has put its costly legal issues with ITV which cost the broadcaster s18m to settle largely behind it. Although falling advertising sales continue to be a problem in terms of overall profitability, first-half pre-tax profits were up seven per cent to June 30 at s7m, with production and digital revenues showing strong overall growth.
A new s70m loan facility was agreed in June, which saw STVs annual interest payments double to more than s2m.
STV has submitted bids to form partnerships with leading Scottish universities to secure local television licences for Edinburgh and Glasgow. It also recently launched on YouView a set top player which allows viewers to watch STV content using a range of digital platforms, including a dedicated STV Player app.
We predict: The broadcasters investment in hyper local services, including regional news content, may be enough to offset a predicted 12 per cent fall in third quarter regional broadcasting revenues.
First job: "Started life as a strategic planner for Kimberly Clark a very disciplined, analytical, US-driven culture. Learnt about what it takes to run an international consumer driven company."
61 (27) Keith Neilson (44), CEO and co-founder, Craneware
After several years of being a stock market darling, the healthcare software specialist which Neilson co-founded caught something of a cold in 2012. The Edinburgh company, which sells all of its software products to the American market, saw profits hit after a negative trading update related to the performance of its US subsidiary InSight, which Craneware acquired in February 2011 in a s12m deal.
Despite the setback Neilson believes the company is in a stronger position than ever and that it continues to occupy an enviable position in a sector expected to see significant growth in the years ahead.
We predict: Neilsons focus will be on continuing to restore confidence in the company prospects and also ensuring speculation that Craneware could attract predators remains just that.
62 (70) Andrew Thomson (70), chairman, DC Thomson & Co Ltd
Publisher DC Thomson announced in August it was bringing to an end 75 years of print history by moving its childrens comic The Dandy to an online-only format. The Dundee-based publisher said the 75-year anniversary print edition of The Dandy, to be published in December, will be the last.
DC Thomson, which owns the newspaper titles The Sunday Post and The Press and Journal, also announced plans in April to shed nearly 100 jobs and contract out its distribution operations to meet.
However, the groups online publishing and hosting division Brightsolid continues to shine, with turnover up 75 per cent last year to s28.4m and gross profits up 47 per cent to s13.5m, largely from the growth of its genealogy and newspaper archiving services. Brightsolid relaunched Friends Reunited in March of this year as a service for users to store and save memories. More recently the group launched Findmypast in the United States.
We predict: DC Thomson is currently undergoing a radical restructuring of its publishing business as sales continue to fall across the entire newspaper industry. However, the publisher has been at the forefront of the digital publishing revolution and is now a driving force in genealogy and newspaper archiving, which is generating strong year-on-year growth, and will continue to focus on driving forward its genealogy division.
63 (71) Peter Page (49), chief executive, Devro Plc
Page continues to deliver growth at the sausage skin-making giant with sales being boosted by a new premium Select range, which is specifically designed to replicate the characteristics of high quality sheep gut in developed markets. He is also ploughing in s35m to increase capacity and enhance productivity. Recently installed lines in its Moodiesburn plant are now in full production and commissioning continues on a new line in the US.
In a sign of the times the low-profile Page is also moving to his main office to London, together with FD Simon Webb, a new international marketing director and a small number of staff, to enable them to have better access to the City and direct travel links to overseas markets. However Page will be keeping his home in Scotland and the official HQ remains here.
We predict: The increasing popularity of Devros sausage skins and increased capacity mean sales should keep rising.
64 (76) Richard K Ackroyd (53), chief executive, Scottish Water
Ackroyd and his colleagues may have improved water quality to record levels, reduced leakage by 44 per cent and charged the lowest household water rates in the UK but that didnt stop of all people a Tory MSP calling him a fat cat because he received a big hike in his pay package from s352,000 to s380,000 including a s105,000 bonus.
We predict: As Scotlands highest paid public sector employee Ackroyd is used to the outrage of politicians but no-one is arguing hes doing a bad job. His challenge is ensuring he really is on top of the challenge of renewing and maintaining the countrys huge water infrastructure.
First job: "Security guard whilst at university. I delivered wages and collected cash as well as security at business premises. I learned that work is not always exciting or even interesting but there are always opportunities to think about other important issues if work is not challenging at the moment."
65 (77) J Douglas Craig OBE (62), chairman and managing director, The Craig Group
It was a big year for Craig as his company took delivery of four new D-Class emergency response and rescue vessels, which are the last of a s250m investment in 23 vessels built in the past 12 years. They are now all contracted maintaining its market dominance in the North Sea. He also decided to go ahead with overseeing the build of his companys biggest ever vessel a new platform supply S class.
For Craig personally the opening of the Craig Floor and the David Craig Suite, in memory of his father at the University of Aberdeens state-of-the art library was a key moment in his life.
We predict: More growth overseas with the companys Craig International Supplies division currently organising new operational bases in Brazil, Poland and Ghana to meet customer demand.
First job: "As an apprentice CA working for Thomson McLintock now KPMG. I learned a lot of things including working as a team player, taking the initiative to lead but to harness the strengths of those around me to produce the best outcome and that I wanted to create and grow a successful business not audit it after it happened."
66 (79) Benny Higgins (51), chief executive, Tesco Bank
The launch of Tesco Bank was seen as the beginning of a new era of competition in UK retail banking when it launched in 2008. Tesco Bank, the trading name of Tesco Personal Finance Plc, said it would create more than 1,000 jobs across its Edinburgh and Glasgow operations after buying back the Royal Bank of Scotlands 50 per cent stake for s950m. However a subsequent switch from RBS to Tescos own IT infrastructure proved a disaster, locking thousands of customers out of their savings accounts last year.
The bank has delayed the launch of its current accounts until 2013 as a result of ongoing IT problems, including adding new industry-wide systems to make it easier for customers to switch accounts. Despite these technology problems, Tesco Bank has attracted 6.5 million customers.
It launched into the UK mortgage market in August, but was forced to slash rates in response to criticism the launch offers were uncompetitive.
Higgins said in a recent interview chasing market share targets is not the right way to run a business and as such has set no targets for Tesco Bank.
We predict: Despite a difficult year, Tesco Bank has managed to retain and grow its customer base and Higgins believes UK bankings recent bad press may prove fortunate for Tesco Bank.
However, Tesco Bank may have lost some early advantage now as Marks and Spencer has launched its own banking division and The Co-operative Group has agreed to purchase 632 branches from Lloyds Banking Group.
67 (53) John Beard (50), chief executive officer, Whyte & Mackay Ltd
Beard has been steering the Glasgow-based company through a new strategy with a change of focus from providing bulk whisky to making the most of its single malt brands such as Jura, Dalmore and Fettercairn as well as its iconic Whyte & Mackay blended whiskies. Initially profits and turnover have been hit but Beard believes it will be a short-term effect. He also sees potential in the whisky as an investment market.
We predict: There have been various reports that Indian owner Vijay Mallya was considering selling a 49 per cent stake in the company to help pay off debts generated by his troubled airline Kingfisher. With the whisky industry currently on a roll it could be an attractive target but one suspects the buyer would just want the lucrative brands.
68 (80) Bill Dobbie (53), chief executive officer and co-founder, Cupid Plc
Serial technology entrepreneur Dobbie has continued to expand the global reach of his dating website empire. A successful push into the huge American market led to a sharp rise in revenues in the first half of the year and has prompted the Edinburgh-based company to look at establishing an office over the pond.
Sales across the companys established markets including the UK, Australia and New Zealand have continued to grow at a healthy pace with rapid progress being made in developing territories such as
Brazil and India. Cupid has also used its financial strength to add sites to its network, with latest deals including acquisitions of French websites including Amour.com in a s2.9m transaction.
We predict: With analysts expecting Cupids war chest to have grown to s11m come the end of the year, Dobbie seems certain to announce further acquisitions.
69 (82) Tony Hackney (54), chief Executive, BSW Timber Ltd
The achievements of the former mining engineer who was brought in by the family-owned company in 2008 to turn round its fortunes was rewarded with the title of Ernst and Youngs Scottish Entrepreneur of the Year during the summer.
Hackneys strategy of moving away from reliance on the ailing construction sector and concentrating efforts on the maintenance and repair market and making products such as specialist fencing and decking took it back into the black with s12.4m profits last year. It also bought Howie Group, which helped boost its turnover by 60 per cent to s163m.
We predict: The boss of Britains biggest sawmill operator is investing s43m in its Lochaber Mill site at Fort William over the next two years to ensure the company keeps ahead of overseas rivals. Expect Hackney to keep annoying those rivals and taking market share from them as he promotes the advantages of British products.
70 (22) Professor Dame Joan Stringer DBE (64), principal and vice-chancellor, Edinburgh Napier University
Another year of success for Dame Joan, who has overseen the university student population grow to almost 18,000 with around 30 per cent from 100 countries overseas. She is particularly proud of the university's record on employability with 93.2 per cent of graduates from 2009-10 in employment or further study within six months. She hoped to entice more students from south of the border with annual fees of s6500 undercutting many English universities. However Dame Joan also told a business audience that she was glad Scotland has not followed the reforms in England which now seem set on a course of very rapid change, significant elements of privatisation and a very unclear view or even vision of what might or should emerge from change.
She is also one of the members of the Commission on School Reform, whose interim report said although by international standards Scotlands schools perform well they do not come at the head of any international league table and their relative position has declined although it is possible to argue the decline may now have been arrested.
We predict: The hard-working first female principal of a Scottish university announced she is stepping down next June but dont expect her to take it easy. She will be making sure the university is in good shape for her successor and continuing her drive for more overseas, English and Welsh students. Whether Napier will win in its joint bid with STV to get a licence for a new TV channel in Edinburgh is too difficult to call.
First job: "I worked at a telephone exchange, which I did not enjoy, but it spurred me on to want better things from my career."
71 (NEW) Lindsay Gardiner (48), regional leader, Scotland, PwC
Gardiner has big shoes to fill following the retirement of the high-profile Frank Blin. The firm remains in a position of strength though Big Four rival Ernst & Young overtook it as the biggest firm in Scotland in terms of employee numbers in the latest Insider accountancy review.
Gardiner has been reported as saying his philosophy is evolution not revolution. However, he will be focusing on opportunities in energy, financial services and public sector.
We predict: Further growth for Gardiner and his team, who are still very hungry for success in Scotland.
First job: "Helping out at my dads grocers shop. I learned that customer service is the number one priority no customers, no business!"
72 (90) Alan Savage (62), chairman, Orion Group
Savage's Inverness-based recruitment company continues to win lucrative contracts to supply engineering and technical personnel to blue-chip oil and gas customers such as Shell Expro, BP, Exxon Mobil, Total and Wood Group.
Recently the company, which employs around 340 people, received a major boost when it won a s20m-a-year contract to be one of two suppliers for Nexen Petroleums s2bn Golden Eagle development in the North Sea. Savage hit the headlines when he won a high-profile case against an ex-girlfriend who sued him for s500,000 claiming her two-year relationship with him left her economically disadvantaged. He also came out as pro-union when he warned no-one would know what will happen if we remove the stability we have from being part of a larger state.
We predict: Orion is an attractive takeover target for rival recruitment groups.But Savage is deeply embedded in the Inverness community and may be reluctant to risk local jobs which could go if it got a new owner based down south or overseas.
First job: "When I was 15 years old labouring at Trollope and Colls, who manufactured concrete pipes. Learned that characters abound on the shop floor and that getting off the shop floor and into an apprenticeship was my first goal!"
73 (92) Mike Hickey (53), chief executive, Wolfson Microelectronics Plc
Wolfson has struggled to regain market share after losing a huge contract with technology giant Apple in 2009 for its early versions of its iPhone devices, and with losses having piled up ever since, this could be a make or break year for the Edinburgh chip maker. Samsung also ordered fewer chips from Wolfson last year than expected. Revenues flatlined at $157m and losses more than doubled to $24m for the 2011 year, despite new partnerships with the likes of Acer and Toshiba.
Despite sales of mobile phone components rising 30 per cent year-on-year in the first half, the company has posted further pre-tax losses of $11.1m (s7.07m) overall. However, Hickey has pushed research and development, which has eaten up nearly half its $97m in cash reserves in the past year.
Some of that investment is now paying off, with Wolfsons new audio technology being adopted in a record number of design-ins which Hickey said should see the company return to underlying profitability in the second half.
We predict: Time will tell if Hickeys investment strategy has worked enough to keep shareholders on board.
74 (37) Sir Tom Hunter (51), chairman, West Coast Capital
Itll be difficult to say what kind of year Sir Tom has had until his property and retail empire West Coast Capital Holdings files accounts in the next few weeks. The toughest conditions in decades for shops and office blocks may make grim reading, and have forced him to tighten his belt over the last couple of years. Its a great time for the Ayrshire entrepreneur to be picking up distressed businesses for a song but also a rubbish time for disposals to raise capital.
Meantime, he has called for politicians to back more fiscal powers for Scotland, and is backing the expansion of Entrepreneurial Spark, a not-for-profit enterprise designed to support 25 to 30 high-growth start-up businesses every six months.
We predict: A slightly lower profile for Sir Tom over the next year or two as he tackles turnaround issues, albeit alongside innovations in the retail space and further economic interventions.
75 (94) Leo Koot (49), managing director, Taqa Bratani
Koot expanded the Abu Dhabi-backed companys operations off the coast of Scotland after buying into three concessions during the year but admitted he may have chosen to invest in the Norwegian North Sea after the UK Governments latest additional taxes on oil and gas operations. Taqa revealed additional UK taxes had reduced its full-year profits by almost s276m.
We predict: Koot will keep buying up unwanted assets from the majors who are looking to invest in potentially more lucrative fields elsewhere but the UK
Government will have to be careful it doesnt frighten off a company which is helping to keep North Sea oilfields flowing.
76 (95) Professor Louise Richardson, principal and vice-chancellor, University of St Andrews
Richardson was once again in the headlines as she hit back at claims her university has a truly awful record of accepting students from deprived areas, claiming the greatest barrier was a lack of educational and social support from a very early age, and poverty.
In more positive publicity her university got a real scoop by signing up Sir Sean Connery to appear in, and also act as narrator for, a film marking the universitys 600th anniversary next year and helping its s100m fund-raising drive.
She also received a boost when St Andrews retained its sixth position in a league of the best universities in the UK beating rivals Edinburgh and Glasgow.
We predict: Richardson persuaded the historic Kate Kennedy club at the university to admit female members for the first time earlier this year. Maybe now there is a chance she will finally be invited to join the Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews.
77 (46) Willie Watt (53), chief executive officer, Martin Currie Investment Management Ltd
Watt may prefer to forget 2012 the year which saw an s8.6m fine from UK and US regulators knocking 84 per cent off annual pre-tax profits. The fine, for a case involving improper preferential client treatment, forced the firm to sell its successful China business to the managers at the centre of the episode and helped push pre-tax profits from s14.1m to s2.3m. Watt said in the annual accounts that we must not be daunted by the fact we have had to go backward to go forward, and said plans to create an Asia hub based in Singapore were advancing.
Meantime a new s25m investment from existing shareholders, including 20 Martin Currie directors, has materially strengthened the business.
We predict: Being employee-owned allows Martin Currie to focus on the long-term rather than short-term profits, giving Watt and his team time to get their house back in order and return to more normal levels of profitability.
78 (97) Fiona Morton (52), chairman, Ryden
Morton and her colleagues at Scotlands biggest independent property surveyor have been nimble footed, enabling them to grow their share of a challenging market. Turnover slipped very slightly to s10.3m in its latest accounts and profits were down by just s100,000 at s2.1m. Glasgow and Aberdeen have proved to be strong areas for the business.
Her realistic approach and ability to enthuse her colleagues have kept her in the job she has held since 2005.
We predict: Morton will be working hard to promote the property sector as a positive contributor to the economic recovery. We hope she achieves her aim of winning back leisure time at the weekend after many years dominated by work.
First job: "A waitress learned how to prioritise tasks and that a friendly smile often leads to a happy customer."
79 (99) Gordon Turner (51), group chairman, Turner & Co (Glasgow) Ltd
The boss of one of Scotlands oldest and best kept secrets, family-owned conglomerate Turner & Co, will no doubt have been encouraged by a recovery in its profits, which climbed from s8.7m to s12.6m though still well short of the s17m they made two years before. Turner focused on margin improvements and overhead control in the face of difficult economic conditions with good performances from its diesels and facilities management, aviation, construction access and hire drive divisions.
We predict: Difficult to say what will happen since Turner keeps everything very low key but he runs a very solid ship so hopefully no nasty surprises ahead.
80= (NEW) Norman Springford (67), chairman, Apex Hotels Ltd
80= (NEW) Angela Vickers (43), managing director, Apex Hotels Ltd
Vickers and Springford celebrated strong results for the hotel groups latest financial year with profits soaring from s2.3m to s7.1m and sales up by 18.2 per cent to more than s40m. Apex opened its third hotel in London in March just in time for the Olympic Games which will further boost revenue. Former accountant Springford, who started the business with a single hotel in Grassmarket in 1996, deservedly received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Hospitality Industry Trust during the year.
We predict: With eight hotels in its portfolio Apex is an attractive buy for a rival. In the past Springford has said the decision about the future of the business is his childrens. This could be a critical year but he is more likely to wait until the economy recovers if a sale is on the cards.
81 (135) Lucinda Bruce-Gardyne (41), founder, Genius Foods
Bruce-Gardynes gluten free bread business is enjoying phenomenal growth with sales set to double to s24m this year. One major contract was an order to supply products to French supermarket giant Carrefour for its Spanish stores.
Her latest investor John Dunsmore, the former boss of brewers C&C and Scottish & Newcastle, has put in more than s500,000 for a five per cent stake and a seat on the board and plans to use his experience to help grow the company globally. Her mentor Sir Bill Gammell who, as a coeliac, recognised the significance of her tasty bread is now chairman. After appointing Roz Cuschieri as chief executive Bruce-Gardyne has been focusing on developing and releasing new products including new recipe gluten-free sandwich loaves, croissants and pains au chocolat.
We predict: Her work priority for next year is to continue to engage with customers and develop more gluten-free products. The world is literally her stage and the business is set to be a major player.
First job: "A friend and I ran a small waitressing company, providing waiting staff for small to medium sized events. We learned that using a bit of initiative, being reliable, doing what we said we would do and taking pride in what we did meant more work came our way and immense satisfaction at the end of every job."
82 (105) Richard Dixon (42), emperor penguin and founder, Vets Now Ltd
Out-of-hours emergency and critical care service provider VetsNow has grown rapidly on its business model, which allows vets to work more flexible hours on an annualised hours system. The Dunfermline-based company employs more than 800 people including support and clinical staff across 52 UK sites, and now offers emergency and ambulance services as well as referrals, all operating under the Now Group (Europe) Ltd umbrella.
Most recent group results to March 31, 2011, revealed a 23 per cent rise in turnover to s22.3m after the group added eight new out-of-hours clinic sites and pre-tax profits rose 45 per cent to s1.03m.
We predict: Dixon has grown VetsNow to become one of the UKs largest veterinary practices, and in April expanded its referral service in the south east of England with the acquisition of NKR Veterinary Specialists. Dixon may look to further consolidate the group offering by way of acquisition in the coming year.
First job: Barman in a pub. I learned when to keep your mouth shut, and how to get on with people from every conceivable walk of life a fabulous life skill.
83 (NEW) Gareth Williams (43), CEO and co-founder, Skyscanner
The flight search companys success story reached new heights with the signing of a potentially transformational new deal which gives it access to Chinese search engine giant Baidus 440 million users. South east Asia already accounts for 15 per cent of the companys s15.3m revenues, which grew 70 per cent last year. Now it is hoping the region will supply half its turnover in the next two to three years. Yi Bao, who joined the company when it acquired travel start-up Zoombu, is to head the companys new Beijing office.
We predict: Williams and his team will be focusing on delivering improvements to their website and growth in the lucrative south eastern market. The highly ambitious, self-confessed IT geek is aiming for Skyscanner to be Scotlands $1bn internet company and floating it on the stock market, which would give a major boost to the countrys dwindling PLC base. Next year could be the time to do it.
First job: "A summer assistant in the British Sugar research laboratories. I learned a lot of things including how long it takes to save any money up, that I never wanted a career or job security and that my genius was not apparent to my seniors."
84 (109) Willie Printie (56), managing director, LifeScan Scotland Ltd
The position of LifeScan Scotland within the US-headquartered Johnson & Johnson international empire was strengthened when it announced that Inverness would be the centre for all diabetes research and development into blood glucose monitoring carried out worldwide. The announcement was not just a boost for Printie and his 1200-strong workforce in the Highland capital but also First Minister Alex Salmond, who revealed the news during a trade and goodwill mission to California. The Scottish Government put s2.85m towards the s9.53m project.
We predict: The well-respected Printie will be continuing to exploit the companys position as a global leader in diabetes treatment technology.
85 (68) Professor Pamela Gillies (59), principal and vice-chancellor, Glasgow Caledonian University
A challenging year for Gillies with a survey showing just 19 per cent of her staff believed she and her senior management team led the university well. Inevitably some of that dissatisfaction follows a major restructuring of the university and some job losses last year. Diplomatically Gillies said there was clear scope for improvement but added the survey showed a generally more positive picture. She also received praise for setting tuition fees for non-Scottish students at realistic levels and showed her willingness to try imaginative new ventures when she teamed up with broadcaster STV to bid for a new Glasgow television station licence and helped bring the first European branch of the Grameen microfinance bank to Scotland.
We predict: Gillies will work to improve relations with her staff but she knows in an increasingly competitive world some hard decisions will still always have to be taken.
86 (114) Brendan Dick (53), director, BT Scotland and managing director, BT GB Regions
The roll-out of superfast broadband across Scotland continues with plans to make the latest technology available to 150,400 addresses across Scotland. However, Dick is continuing to call for public sector support in introducing super-fast broadband to remote and hard to reach areas.
For those who might say BT isnt putting enough investment into Scotland itself he points out the importance of BT to the countrys economy with a recent report stating it directly employs 6650 people north of the border, with a further 940 contractors, who between them earned s243m.
We predict: Dick will continue to do an excellent job as an ambassador for BT but will face increasing calls to do more to tackle the problems of areas where better broadband coverage is badly needed. His problem is there may not be enough public funding available to achieve it.
Dick also has a challenge on his hands in his role as chair of Scottish Business in the Community to persuade more companies to join Prince Charles charity and help improve the image of the corporate world.
87 (116) Gordon Grant (58), director, Ineos Manufacturing Scotland Ltd
Tough times for Grant with falling demand for petrol hitting the bottom line of Scotlands only oil refinery with alleged losses of s100m. The situation for the refinery, which employs 1400 staff and is 50 per cent owned by PetroChina following a s600m deal a year ago, is being excaerbated by new laws which require it to substantially reduce the output of gases such as nitrogen oxide and sulphur dioxide. The only consolation is that Ineoss chemical business, which also operates from the site, is reported to be in the black.
We predict: Grant faces constant challenges but a s94m investment to upgrade its cracker plant should have long-term benefits.
88 (120) Keith M Miller CBE (63), group chief executive, The Miller Group Ltd
Miller Group's chief executive has faced another tough year in which the group posted a pre-tax loss of s86.6m for the 2011 financial year, following a loss of s152.6m twelve months previously.
The group agreed a new s160m funding package in February, which saw it relinquish a 50 per cent stake to its financier, GSO Partners the credit arm of Blackstone Group along with Noble Grossart and the Royal Bank of Scotland, which increased its stake to 23 per cent. The new equity deal allowed the group to refinance its s600m bank debt onto a new five-year facility, which it said would allow the group to unlock its land bank and fund growth of its construction division.
The group's four divisions house building, construction, property and mining all returned to profit and the group reported a return to profit for the first half of 2012, though largely from offloading property.
We predict: It remains to be seen if, when the consolidation feeding frenzy begins, Miller Group is strong enough financially to take a seat at the table or finds itself on the menu.
First job: "Aged 16 working in Millers Bonus Department where we had to measure tradesmens output to calculate their bonus entitlement. The tradesmen always knew to the penny how much they were due. I learned never to mess up anyones pay entitlement."
89 (NEW) Ian Brander (43), executive director, Howden Group
The retirement of Bob Cleland after presiding over the growth of one of Scotlands most successful companies during the past 12 years cleared the way for insider Brander to take the hot seat.
The Strathclyde University graduate has worked with Howden since 1983 in a number of roles in the UK and abroad.
Howden, which specialises in industrial equipment such as air compressors and employs more than 500 staff in Scotland, saw a 23 per cent rise in turnover with sales up by an impressive 46 per cent in the final quarter alone to $1.07bn in 2011.
We predict: With increasing environmental legislation driving expansion in many of its markets, Brander is expected to continue to deliver growth for the companys American owners.
90 (131) Stewart Milne (62), chairman and chief exec, Stewart Milne Group Ltd
Milne faces the challenge of being in two of the most difficult current sectors construction and football. However, his construction groups latest published results revealed he had managed not only to make a profit but increase it from s140,000 to s406,000. No mean feat.
Meanwhile Milne warned the future of Aberdeen FC, which he chairs, could be put at risk after councillors rejected plans for a community sports complex that would double as training facilities for a planned new 21,000-seater stadium at Loirston Loch to replace ageing Pittodrie, which is not big enough to host European fixtures.
We predict: The astute construction industry veteran will look for land buying opportunities as weaker players fall by the wayside. He has a bigger challenge in getting Aberdeen FCs future sorted and it will be a critical year.
91 (NEW) Chris van der Kuyl (43), chief executive, Brightsolid Online Innovation
Van der Kuyls Midas touch in the technology sector has been proven once again with the success of Brightsolid, the web hosting and genealogy division of Dundee publisher DC Thomson. He joined Brightsolid in 2006 with a view to restructuring what was then Scotland Online and identified the potential in expanding the family history side of the business. Brightsolid then acquired genealogy website findmypast.com, going on to acquire Friends Reunited from ITV in a s25m deal in 2010, which gave Brightsolid its Genes Reunited offshoot, and,with scotlandspeople.gov.uk, made Brightsolid the second biggest online family research brand in the world.
In 2012 Brightsolid posted a 75 per cent rise in turnover to s28.4m and gross profits up 47 per cent to s13.5m. It recently launched Findmypast in the United States.
We predict: With Brightsolid already boasting 18 million registered users of its online publishing suite, van der Kuyl has managed a rare feat in digital publishing monetising a service which people are happy to pay for. With his sights now on competing with US genealogy giant ancestry.com, van der Kuyl will be looking to attract a larger share of the family history paying audience, which global industry analysts recently estimated to be around 84 million people and rising.
92 (NEW) Dougal Sharp (40), CEO, The Innis & Gunn Brewing Company Ltd
Ten years after launching the beer-making business, Sharp was able to take a step back from the day-to-day operational management of the business to let the newly enlarged management team start to take the reins. Recruits included Grant Thornton corporate finance partner David Cockburn as chief financial officer, and a Europe business development manager to identify markets on the continent into which the firm can sell its bottled and draught beers.
The company was boosted by a big jump in turnover to s8.5m as it continued its expansion at home and overseas. It launched its first draught beer in Canada and was looking to supply casks to other export markets.
We predict: Sharp will be completing the reorganisation of the business and honing its strategy for the next 10 years.
First job: "Opening barrels at The Caley Brewery so they could be washed, then filling them. Everyone has to start somewhere, and I did every shop-floor job there was at the Caley mostly all the worst ones thanks to Dad. It taught me to value all othe work and efforts from people that goes into making companies great."
93= (134) Iain McFadyen (53), managing director, Scottish Leather Group Ltd
93= (NEW) Jonathan Muirhead (61), chairman, Scottish Leather Group Ltd
The UK's biggest leather maker delivered strong sales growth of 54 per cent to s97.8m as it won work to make car seat covers for some of the prestigious names in the motoring world including Jaguar, Land Rover and Ford Europe. Increases in raw material costs held back a similar rise in profits, which grew from s5.9m to s7.2m.
There was a big boost for subsidiary Bridge of Weir Leather Company, which won a Queens Award for Enterprise for the fourth time in its history after seeing a 150 per cent rise in sales, 90 per cent of which were exports.
We predict: McFadyen and Muirhead know their future lies in driving up sales around the globe and, in particular, fast growing economies such as China where quality Scottish leather is valued highly.
94 (48) Charles Hammond (51), chief executive officer, Forth Ports Ltd
Following the s760m takeover of Forth Ports last year by its largest shareholder, Arcus European Infrastructure Fund, its been back to business as usual this year for redoubtable chief executive Hammond. He is pursuing a portcentric strategy, building on Forths status as Scotlands largest port operator and also owner of Tilbury, Londons major port on the Thames. In line with this, Forth paid s95m for the 67 per cent it didnt already own of Tilburys container operation, Tilbury Container Services, and will create a new combined container terminal that is the third largest of its kind in the UK. This will be supported by a s3.4m Motorways of the Sea grant from the European Commission, designed to remove trucks from the roads in West and Southern Europe.
Hammond also oversaw the disposal of Forths flagship shopping centre, Ocean Terminal to real estate investor Resolution Property for an undisclosed sum. Proceeds from the sale will help Forth further invest in its ports business.
We predict: Hammond will be kept busy with more reshaping of Forths extensive property and ports portfolio as it refocuses on its core business.
95 (NEW) Alan Foy (45), chief executive officer, Smart Metering Systems
Former ScottishPower engineer Alan Foy has made an impressive debut in his first year as chief executive of an AIM-listed company. Shares in Smart Metering Systems have more than trebled since the company floated in the summer of 2011.
He has overseen the signing of a clutch of major contracts with the likes of SSE and French energy giant Total to supply gas meters.
Foy, and founder and deputy chairman Steve Timoney, have seen the value of their combined stake in the Glasgow business rise by more than s40m.
We predict: Under Foys leadership, SMS has quickly established a strong position in a market expected to be worth s300m by 2014. Definitely a company to watch.
96 (NEW) Roy Davis (56), chief executive officer, Optos Plc
Shares in the Dunfermline-based eye scanner maker took a tumble when it reported a surprise rise in costs and fall in margins. But Davis, an engineering graduate who has been at the helm of the company for four years, was able to give the City better news just a few weeks later with the ramping up of production of its Daytona desktop device to cope with demand. Latest financial figures, for the nine months to June 30, saw turnover rise by 24 per cent to s81.2m as the company continues to shift from renting out its devices to selling them to doctors.
We predict: Davis will be hoping the early interest shown in Optos Daytona product translates into strong orders when it officially launches this autumn. That could see shares in the company retest the record highs hit earlier this year.
97 (NEW) Susie McIntyre (43), managing director, Kettle Produce Ltd
It has not been the easiest of times for the fresh vegetable supplier, which saw its latest published profits to May 2011 tumble from s493,000 to s80,000 after being hit by bad winter weather. The family-owned company works with 50 farmers who between them grow approximately 2,500 hectares of vegetable and salad crops across Scotland. However, it has high hopes with the rebuilding of its Orkie washing and packing facility, which was badly damaged in a fire two years ago.
We predict: Kettle, which employs more than 800 people, is overdue for some good luck. McIntyre and her company are well respected but, like everyone in the agricultural industry, are very dependent on the weather, which was extremely wet this summer. However, the growing demand for Scottish produce in supermarkets will help their cause.
98 (88) Sir Angus Grossart (75), chairman, Noble Grossart Ltd
Sir Angus remains hugely influential in both the Scottish private and public sectors. His merchant bank enjoyed a rise in profits from s6.86m to s8.01m with its results accompanied by his annual state of the nation report which attacked banks and companies for short-term thinking.
However Sir Angus also had to defend the Scottish Futures Trust, which he chairs, over criticism it had taken too long to deliver. He said the trust provided a disciplined approach to procurement and the management of financial risk.
We predict: No doubt Sir Angus will be keeping his eye out for investment opportunities but he wont take any unnecessary risks. Bearing in mind what he said about short-term thinking he will presumably not be putting pressure on bus-maker Alexander Dennis to look at providing an exit for shareholders including his own firm though it is growing stronger by the day.
99 (85) Trevor Garlick (54), North Sea region president, BP Plc
Garlick spent much of his time focusing on selling off assets in the North Sea to help pay the bill for BPs Gulf of Mexico disaster. In June it raised s179m through the sale of stakes in its Alba and Britannia fields and earlier in the year disposed of a number of manned and unmanned platforms in the southern North Sea and a terminal at Dimlington to French oil and gas company Perenco for s251m. However, Garlick insisted the company was investing more than ever in the UKs offshore industry with a s10bn programme over the next five years including the huge Clair field west of the Shetlands.
We predict: BP remains a big player in the North Sea and Garlick will now be able to look at the issue of getting as much oil and gas as possible from a very challenging environment.
100 (NEW) Craig Gallagher (39), chief executive officer, MB Aerospace Holdings Ltd
It was a big year for Gallagher as he successfully doubled the size of his aero component manufacturing business with the acquisition of US based Gentz Aero using funds from the sale of two non-core subsidiaries, MB Faber and MBAe Oil & Gas. Gentz Industries, based in Detroit, manufactures complex, high-precision engine components for leading names in the global aerospace market such as Pratt & Whitney, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Volvo Aerospace and the US Department of Defense.
The acquisition created an international brand with total annual revenues in excess of $80m. The Motherwell-based group also acquired the smaller Somerset-based Thomson Aero in April 2012. It now has a workforce of more than 400.
We predict: Gallagher will be focused on integrating its acquisitions and supporting their planned growth and aims to establish his company as a global provider of aero-engine components.
First job: "Sales engineer in the oil and gas industry I learned higher quality products always win through and perseverance pays."