Britain's Top 100 Entrepreneurs 2014: No. 17= - Gareth Williams, Skyscanner

The online travel entrepreneur is worth £80m.

by Philip Beresford

In 2001 Skyscanner was just an idea to help its co-founders, including chief executive Gareth Williams, find cheap ski breaks on the internet. The Edinburgh-based company grew to become the top flight search engine in Europe. Skyscanner now offers travel searches in more than 30 different languages, including Thai, Japanese and Russian. A recent investment valued it at nearly £500m. Its three co-founders, all former contract IT workers at Marks & Spencer, funded the business initially by putting 10% of their salaries into a fund for six months as seed capital. Then they started pumping more than 90% of their incomes into the fledgling business. 

Age: 45
Activity: Online travel
Wealth: £80m
Latest turnover: £66m
Five-year rise in turnover: 633%
No. of employees: 276
Five-year rise in employment: 345%
Score: 88

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