FT ranking: High-Growth Companies Asia-Pacific 2023
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The fifth annual FT ranking of 500 high-growth Asia-Pacific companies is still dominated by technology-related businesses — but now features a much wider range of industries where revenues are rising fast, as local incomes and foreign investment in the region climb.
Asia looks set to be the main driver of global growth in 2023 as the world navigates a third year of the Covid-19 pandemic. Earlier this month, the OECD said it expects India to have the fastest GDP growth of the major economies this year as it further tries to position itself as a global tech and manufacturing hub. In a boost to those ambitions, the US has declared India a “trusted partner” in technology as the west seeks to end its reliance on China (article and ranking methodology continue below table).
* Companies marked with an asterisk had less than 12 months of revenue in the 2018 financial year, but still passed $100,000 revenue.
** Companies marked with a double asterisk have their revenue 2021 annualised due to a change of fiscal year.
*** Company has been acquired after the relevant timeframe.
**** Company had a misquoted 2017 revenue in High-Growth Companies Asia-Pacific 2022 and would have been ranked at 71 in the 2022 list with the correct revenue.
Geopolitical tensions between Washington and Beijing have also prompted businesses and investors to reroute capital to south-east Asia from China, which is not included in our ranking due to difficulties in verifying data. Foreign direct investment flows to the region climbed 44 per cent to $175bn in 2021, according to the UN. But there has been a global pullback as the impact of the pandemic continues to reverberate and, despite reforms, many markets in the Asia-Pacific retain a reputation for risk.
This was highlighted again this month when allegations by a US short seller of fraud and stock market manipulation at Indian conglomerate Adani Group sparked a market sell-off. Its billionaire owner Gautam Adani has dismissed the claims and sought to reassure investors, but there are concerns over the impact on wider foreign investment in the country. This is among the topics that will be discussed in a special report to accompany this ranking to be published on April 16.
India needs to attract additional investment to help create the jobs promised in a recent business-friendly budget. But it has some way to catch up with Japan in the FT ranking, which accounts for 136 fast-growing companies on the list versus 73 for India, which ranks fourth on this measure. South Korea sits in second place with 78 companies, followed by Singapore with 75 groups.
Singapore is home to this year’s top-ranked company: Rex International Holdings. The oil and gas exploration company leads the list with an impressive 630.17 per cent compound annual growth in revenue over the three years to 2022, buoyed by higher oil prices. The minimum CAGR needed to qualify for the ranking was 16.3 per cent, down from last year’s 18.1 per cent.
IT and software accounts for the largest number of companies in the ranking by far, at some 26.4 per cent, versus 8 per cent for advertising and marketing, the next most represented industry.
Tokyo leads the city rankings with 82 companies, followed by Singapore with 75 and Seoul with 60 groups on the list.
This ranking is not comprehensive as many fast-growing companies are privately held and do not make public any detailed financial information, while others do not wish to disclose their revenue figures, or choose not to take part for other reasons.
Of those that did share and verify their revenues, the 500 fastest-growing are listed in the table. Readers can filter the ranking by country, sector or revenue.
Asia-Pacific High-Growth Companies 2023 is a list of the 500 companies in the Asia-Pacific region that achieved the highest percentage growth in revenues between 2018 and 2021.
The ranking was created through a complex procedure. Although the search was extensive, the ranking does not claim to be complete, as some companies did not want to make their revenue figures public or did not participate for other reasons.
Through research in company databases and other public sources, Statista identified tens of thousands of companies in the Asia-Pacific region as potential candidates for the ranking. These businesses were invited to participate in the competition by post and email.
The project was also advertised online and in print, allowing all eligible companies to register via the websites created by Statista and the Financial Times.
The application phase ran from June 2022 to January 2023. The submitted revenue figures had to be certified by the company’s chief financial officer, chief executive, or a member of its executive committee.
Criteria for inclusion
To be included in the list of fast-growing companies in the Asia-Pacific region, a company had to meet the following criteria:
Revenue of at least $100,000 generated in 2018 (or currency value equivalent as of 2018);
Revenue of at least $1m generated in 2021 (or currency value equivalent as of 2021);
Revenue growth between 2018 and 2021 that was primarily organic (ie “internally” generated).
An independent company (not a subsidiary or branch office of any kind);
Headquartered in one of these 13 territories in the Asia-Pacific region: Australia, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, New Zealand, Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam.
Calculation of growth rates
The calculation of growth rates is based on the revenue figures submitted by the companies in their respective national currencies. For better comparability in the ranking, the revenues were converted into US dollars. The annual average exchange rates in 2018 and 2021, respectively, were used for this purpose.
The compound annual growth rate (CAGR) was calculated as follows: ((revenue2021 / revenue2018 )^(1/3)) — 1 = CAGR. The absolute growth between 2018 and 2021 was calculated as follows: (revenue2021 / revenue2018) — 1 = Growth rate
Evaluation and quality assurance
All data reported by the companies was processed and checked by Statista. Missing data entries (employee numbers, address data, etc) were researched in detail. Companies that did not fulfil the criteria for inclusion in the ranking were deleted. The minimum average annual growth rate required to be included in the ranking this year was 16.3 per cent