The Gibson Index contains profiles on some 70,000 early stage start-ups, University spinouts, SME veterans, technology-led consultancies and business partnerships. It forms the world’s first comprehensive national small company database of any major nation.

The index is the result of an intensive research project by the writer and author Marcus Gibson, a prolific contributor to The Financial Times newspaper, and his team of researchers and correspondents from around the UK – in a project started more than 10 years ago.

It seeks to highlight the UK’s unique treasure store of small technology companies - which is one of the most important but least understood ‘Crown Jewels’ of the British economy.

Subscribers to the database include UK Government organizations, blue chip British companies, academic institutions, finance houses and economic development organizations keen to keep in touch with the fast moving world of technology and small SMEs in the UK.



News from Gibson Index Ltd:


May 2024: The UK Film Training Association is helping to meet the urgent need for more skilled production staff in the UK – now that major US studios have recently opened here - including Amazon, Apple TV, Warner Bros, Universal Studios and Netflix. The fast-expanding UKFTA has commissioned Gibson Index to supply a comprehensive overview of the UK film production sector.

April 2024: Monitoring by Gibson Index shows a remarkable surge in investment in UK companies – from Sweden. Why? No one knows. Billions are being spent in buying or expanding mostly hard engineering and manufacturing firms in the UK – mostly in the English Midlands, not the usual location in the South East. Part of the answer lies in a growing national synergy between Sweden and the UK, due to Sweden’s new membership of NATO and a rapidly widening gap between Stockholm and Brussels, especially since the invasion of Ukraine two years ago.

June 2023: Gibson Index Ltd assisted the UK Dept of Business with its in-depth research into four of the UK’s most important business sectors, including Biotech and Quantum Computing. The UK is a world leader in both of these sectors, and also European leader by some distance. Around 2,800 SMEs are active in Biotech, with many more in Medical Devices & Lab Equipment, and around 600 business-active companies in eHealth Software. If you are seeking UK sector mapping information, please email:

Oct 2022: The rapid collapse of China’s economy offers big opportunities for UK manufacturers to take back production that was lost under the Blair-Brown years after 1997 when Whitehall declared that the UK ‘could never compete’ with China. Gibson Index believes the sectors most affected will be electronics, textiles, biomedical items, chemicals, clothing, plastics and household products, which are now being made in increasingly large quantities in the UK rather than in China. Indeed, nearly all big international corporations have already left China – largely due to Communist Party restrictions, chemical contamination and environmental catastrophes, failure of the banking and property sectors, and endemic corruption. In July 2022, 37% of UK manufacturers such as Wilton International said they ‘had either already reshored operations - or were planning to do so within the next five years’. If enacted, this could give employment to around 480,000 workers in the UK.

Feb 2022: Lobbying by Gibson Index (GI) at the most senior level of the DHSC and NHS has helped to reverse the NHS ‘Jab for Job’ policy – in which every member of staff must be double vaccinated or lose employment. GI pointed out that the key metric is not how many times one has been vaccinated, which is far from full immunisation, it is solely one’s level of immunity.
Since Nov 2020 GI has been assisting world class British immunity test firm Bio-Diagnostics Ltd - our intervention, which showed that many unvaxxed staff posed no greater risk than those vaccinated – though we emphasize we fully support, and have always supported, the vaccinations programme. Immunity tests by Bio-Diagnostics, currently the world’s most accurate, will enable NHS staff to take an immunity test that proves their current risk status.

Oct 2021: Article in ‘Business Cloud’ - "Cop26, and why disastrous energy policies are killing the North". CLICK HERE TO VIEW ARTICLE

Dec 2020: Article in ‘Research Fortnight’ laments steep fall in number of university spinouts going to the AIM market, down from 37 in 2000-2010 to just 10 in 2010-2020.

20 July 2020: Some recent successes: Predictions by Gibson Index have been pleasingly accurate:
— Only six out of the 7,300 top-rated firms have gone bust in the past five years, a validation of GI’s comprehensive SME assessment analyses, honed since it commenced in 2003.
— InnovateUK has now introduced a commercial-focused Knowledge Transfer Partnership - at last, and not just technology-based KTPs after 30 years of running the scheme. This came soon after GI first proposed a ‘KCP’
– with around 100 SMEs in the first tranche
– in ‘Research Fortnight’.
— Gibson Index also proposed a radical switch in the UK’s R&D strategy, calling for ‘Less R and More D’ to boost the greatly under-funded development portion of current spending, and accelerate the flow of new products and processes into global markets. This was later endorsed by luminaries such as ex-Cambridge VC Lord Broers and former head of the RAENG, Dame Ann Dowling.
— Our report, urging rapid re-shoring of UK-funded manufacturing from China, first published by Civitas in 2017, has become a key priority
- given the current rush to return manufacturing to the UK by hundreds of SMEs from China
- amid the near-total loss of trust from 2020 onwards.

18 May 2020: Gibson Index launched a new, ground-breaking report: ‘Brexit Boom’, which describes for the first time the extraordinary rise in trading, exports and overall sales by Britain’s best SMEs – nearly all of it outside the EU. VIEW HERE

April 2nd 2020: Gibson Index delivers to BEIS a comprehensive, nationwide list of 238 SMEs able to help with testing, vaccination, reagents and PPE supplies, enabling immediate links between NHS hospitals and local manufacturers. We also published a piece on ‘Business Cloud’: ‘Meet the SMEs leading the charge against the coronavirus crisis’. VIEW HERE

31st January 2020: The Daily Telegraph published our feature on the ‘Brexit Boom’, and the Daily Mail’s Business Section followed up on 4th February 2020:The Daily Telegraph, The Daily Mail.

23rd October 2019: From the 524 new firms researched in the third quarter of 2019 – Gibson Index’s ‘Top Five’ SMEs are: edtech firm Teacherly, which helps teachers plan their classes; StreetTeam Software Ltd, which has raised no less than $100m for its friends’ experiences and rewards website; Audacious Mobile Ltd, whose technology automatically adjusts mobile phones to help the hard-of-hearing; Cambridge Cancer Genomics, which is building a personalised oncology platform for patients, and finally, visualisation firm Kiln Enterprises, trading as Flourish, whose data maps have featured widely the media lately.

24th September 2019: In late September Gibson Index will publish a new book: ‘The UK’s Top 12 Most High Potential Companies’, via the Oxford-based Bite-Sized Books Ltd, run by Dr Paul Davies. In what is likely to be the first in a continuous series – the book profiles twelve of Britain’s best, but surprisingly little-known smaller companies that have not been widely publicised – but deserve top marks for future potential. We will provide a direct link to the book upon publication, and meanwhile here is the link to the company’s wide range of books – on public issues, foreign policy and children’s books.

25 July 2019: Gibson Index’s SME ‘radar’ research added 240 new companies in the month of July, including the following. The screentouch tech firm Cambridge Touch Technologies Ltd closed a $10m Series B funding round; Nasdaq in the US signed a deal with UK firm Football Index, the Swansea-based technology start-up QuoteOnSite secured £350,000 in a seed funding round and, lastly, Newcastle University spinout AMLo Biosciences Ltd is forging ahead with its melanoma biomarker research.

July 2nd, 2019: ‘Thousands of UK SMEs are focusing on non-EU markets in historic switch likely to change the UK economy forever..’, states a new report by Gibson Index Ltd, the UK’s foremost research house on Britain’s 70,000 high potential smaller companies.The report, ‘From EU to World View – SMEs turn Global’, confirms the strategic switch from low-growth EU markets to the great high growth regions of the world – North America, Middle East and South Asia – where UK exports are ‘exploding’ both in size and number. Marcus Gibson, editor and author, comments “As we forecast back in 2016 after the Brexit vote – the majority of innovative, often little-known UK firms are now minimising efforts to get new sales in the EU and turning all efforts to much more welcoming markets, and enjoying huge success with 30%+ greater exports – with much more to come. This forms a massive strategic switch for the UK economy.. it is also historic, but it is only the start.. Old media such as the BBC and the FT never saw this coming..” Companies leading the charge include auto industry greats Triumph, Norton Motorcycles and JCB, cheese maker Alvis Bros, Welsh chutney firm Radnor Preserves Ltd, pizza oven maker Gozney Ltd, and cosmetics firm Hawkins & Brimble Ltd.

  • To purchase ‘From EU to World View – SMEs turn Global’ – call 07973 175 159

June 1st, 2019: Gibson Index completes the first major study of all SMEs in 14 key sectors for the Society of Chemical Industry in London. The ground-breaking review maps sectors such as chemicals, materials, environmental and nanotech, and lists all of the known, commercial active companies from PLCs to startups. Profiling more than 13,000 company entities in unprecedented detail, it will form the basis of the Society’s future recommendations for the strategic development of the chemicals industry in all its many aspects.

April 30th, 2019: Gibson Index reaches total of 73,000 UK SMEs researched, profiled and rated in terms of future potential. Latest inclusions include Cheshire-based car comms firm Wejo Ltd, probably the single most high potential firm in the UK. Fintech-related firms, including startups, in the dataset now exceed 5,300 but, in addition, manufacturing in the UK is enjoying its role in the UK’s export ‘boom’ since Brexit vote in 2016.

Little-known firms we recommend include Batcam Ltd, makers of a long flight time, hydrogen-powered drone; Two Farmers Crisps, the first to launch a compostable packet when Walkers Crisps said it wasn’t possible; Banbury-based deep sea surveyors 4DOcean in Scotland; and the venerable 100+ year-old firm British Wax Refining Ltd run by the fourth generation of the founding family.

All 201 of the company winners of the Queen’s Awards for Enterprise 2019 have been inserted or updated. Among them are our favourites: multiple previous winner Ikon Science Ltd, Air IT Ltd, Ezidock Systems Ltd and Bodywise (UK) Ltd, makers of the first ‘fine to flush’ wet wipes, promising a big leap in environmental progress – a company we first spotted as high potential in 2010 – giving it a ‘10’, ie top rating.

We are currently focused on discovering new innovations in a series of industries such as rail engineering, chemicals, cosmetics, nanotech, food processing, energy storage and instrumentation. If you are one of our 500+ expert helpers – academics, journalists, researchers, business centre owners and a growing band of amateur spotters, and know of any SMEs, both established and emerging, active in these areas – get in touch..

73,000 SMEs, 126,000 named contacts - “The UK’s innovation landscape in one pot”.

Gibson Index staff will be attending these events, and more, in May 2019:

  • May 1st, ChemUK, Harrogate, North Yorkshire.
  • May 1st, 13th BioTrinity event, 155 Bishopsgate, London.
  • May 2nd, KTP Awards, Royal Society of Chemistry, London.
  • May 8th, Tech Show North, Manchester.
  • May 15th, Med-Tech Innovation, Birmingham, West Midlands.
  • May 21st, Cranfield Manufacturing Debate, Cranfield, Bedfordshire.
  • May 22nd, GEO Business, Business Centre, London.
  • June 4-6th, Advanced Manufacturing Exhibition, Birmingham, West Midlands.

February 27th, 2019: three new companies pinpointed by Gibson Index as ‘top’ potential: Cambridge-based cell tech firm Mogrify Ltd, with Dr Darren Disley OBE at the helm; Oxford-based VeriVin Ltd, which has developed a spectroscopic wine analyser that may abolish vintage wine fraud; and Maximus Networks, a company aiming to ‘reinvent the public phone box with 5G’.

January 18, 2019: Gibson Index maps top UK tech sectors nationally across the UK: AI, fintech, software, digital services and materials sectors – a total of 4,270 new companies added to the dataset in the latest update.


News from Gibson Index Ltd in 2018:


November 28th, 2018: As predicted by Gibson Index in ‘The Economist’ in 2016, UK exports in the two years since the Brexit vote have exploded by 15%, the biggest rise in recent history. Marcus Gibson, editor of Gibson Index Ltd and former columnist for ‘The Financial Times’, said: “This is entirely contrary to the Doomsday forecasts of the Treasury, CBI and , Bank of England, OECDIoD and World Bank, and other ‘experts’. If this rate of export expansion continues it will result in nothing short of an economic miracle that will be studied for years to come.
“It is a great pity that the mainstream media missed this historic development. They’ve failed to profile the amazing SMEs – in consumer goods, luxury gifts, food & drink, and in manufacturing - who travel the world selling British-made goods in new, high growth markets outside the EU – such as Kazakhstan, Oman, and Macedonia.
“If this export rise keeps going, in just six years the UK exports to the EU may fall below 25% of total UK exports – sharply reducing our current dependence on the will of the European Commission and EU politicians.”

October 1st, 2018: Gibson Index Ltd begins working for techUK, the largest technology-led SME membership organisation in the UK - to join, contact: Glyn Hughes on 020 7331 2026 or at

September 7th, 2018: National contract for SMEs issued by BEIS - Gibson Index Ltd

August 12th, 2018: Top quality Scottish SMEs recently pinpointed by Gibson Index, includes McCormack Innovations, Beeks plc, RHA Technoloiges Ltd and HV Systems Ltd

July 25th, 2018: Top 500 firms list in North West England completed, issued

June 15th, 2018: Gibson Index releases critical report into failures of UK innovation policy
- Call 07973 175 159 to purchase full report: £880.

June 12, 2018: Gibson Index’s ‘Top SME’ Ceravision Ltd launches world-beating lamp

June 5th, 2018: Gibson Index supplies BEIS with 430 UK robotics company list – a record

May 15th, 2018: Corporation of City of London commissions UK database

May 3rd, 2018: Gibson Index supplies key SME candidates to Royal Academy of Engineering

April 2018: Major finance firm receives ‘Top 100’ list of SMEs for investment from GI

March 2018: Gibson Index logs 70,000th UK SME in its unique national database

February 2018: York College joins new clutch of FE Colleges subscribing to SME data

January 2018: Gibson Index releases ‘Top 10 SMEs to Watch in 2018’ list
- In third place: Pragma UK Ltd
- In second place: Vision Modular Systems UK Ltd
- In first place: Osler Diagnostics Ltd


News from Gibson Index Ltd in 2017:


Dec 2017: Gibson Index commissions two MSc students at Judge Business School, Cambridge, to probe comparative value of ‘Digital v Manufacturing’ to UK economy

Nov 2017: University of Chester re-subscribes to Gibson Index SME dataset

June 2017: Gibson Index releases report in support of Brexit: ‘Top 12 Reasons for Leaving’


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