In 1990 Algerian-born Hamid Guedroudj started Petroleum Experts, an award-winning Edinburgh operation providing high-tech modelling software to the oil industry. It has some 350 clients globally – including BP, Shell and Chevron – and the innovative digital-mapping tools developed by Guedroudj have been used to boost production efficiency in more than 200 oil fields. And yet when he started out, despite 13 years as an oil consultant, no one would back him and he had to build the business from scratch with no outside funding. Consequently, he retains full control of Petroleum Experts, which grew by no less than 240% in the five years to 2012. In 2013 the business made a record £29m profit on £38m sales, up 50% on the previous year.
Activity: Oil R&D
Latest turnover: £38m
Five-year rise in turnover: 124%
No. of employees: 59
Five-year rise in employment: 64%