Watford-based JD Wetherspoon has 927 pubs after opening 46 in 2013-14 and it plans to add another 30-40 sites this year. 'Spoons', as it is nicknamed, was founded by Tim Martin in 1979. Martin, a former lawyer, had a difficult start but has never looked back since. Wetherspoon had a record number of pubs in the recent Good Beer Guide published by CAMRA. One third of the group’s pubs are in the annual guide.
Latest turnover: £1.3bn
Five-year rise in turnover: 34%
No. of employees: 15,402
Five-year rise in employment: 33%