May 26, 2020

These are the 800 fastest growing young companies in Spain | Economy


A travel agency, a construction company, a restaurant or a mobile application. No matter the sector, hundreds of businesses have managed to be growth champions in the last three years in Spain, according to a list prepared by Iberinform, of the Credit and Caución group. Crossing data from the Mercantile Registry, they have identified 834 gazelle companies, with less than five years of life, which grow more than 20% in each of the last three years and invoice more than half a million euros with a workforce of more than 10 employees.

They are SMEs that don’t know how to walk, they just run. “Its collective value lies in the ability to tell us where are the economic growth niches. And the answer may surprise us: in Spain, gazelles continue to operate in traditional sectors. Only a minority of them work in the most innovative, such as electronic commerce, ICT or biotechnology, ”says Ignacio Jiménez, director of Iberinform.

The first of the classification, Travelperk, It was founded in Barcelona in 2016 by the hand of the Israeli Avi Meir and the Salvadoran Javier Suárez, former employees of Booking who found in the company trips a new niche market. “Last year was really strong for us. We continue to grow, we go from 155 to 433 employees, we open a second office in Barcelona and close a financing round of 104 million, ”says Meir. With a turnover of 44 million in 2018, this year they plan to launch more products around company trips.

They are twice as big as the second fastest company, the construction company Vertebra, an engineering company founded in Madrid by people who had been working for 20 years in the sector, but who decided to give another approach to a traditional business. “The usual model is based on the subcontracting of a work with an auction among suppliers. We have turned it around, our offers have greater certainty, which has helped us to have a hiring portfolio of 50 million, ”says Javier Córdoba, its CEO and partner. Sometimes it is known, but sometimes the market is a blank page. It happens to Wallbox, a company founded by former employees of Tesla, Enric Asunción and Eduard Castañeda, which is dedicated to design, produce and distribute chargers for the electric car. “We saw the need for other car manufacturers to create smart home solutions that would allow faster charging, saving money,” says Asunción. In four years they have managed to be present in Europe and now in China. “Our foundations are in the product, very differential, which really is much better than there is in the market, that gives you an advantage.”

The product too It is the philosopher’s stone for Elparking, an application that tries to be “the co-pilot of the car, with a utility to pay for services such as the ORA, but also related to driving,” defines Enrique Domínguez, its director. In a few years they have obtained 1.3 million users, of which 485,000 have made a transaction in the last three months.


Size of the fastest growing companies

Size of the fastest growing companies

Size of the fastest growing companies

These are the 800 fastest growing young companies in Spain



Ramón González Cambray, director of the MBA of the UOC, believes that they are SMEs with vision and experience. “With so much competition and globalization, what ends up defining a gazelle company is in the efficiency of the processes. A key challenge is innovation, through digitalization it offers business opportunities. And although they are not 100% digital, surely in their growth this aspect has an important impact ”.

Many digital models seek to scale, multiply their customers. Sometimes forgetting the benefit. They trust that losing is the first step to winning. Luis Pérez del Val, Founder and CEO of Lola Market, An online shopping system in supermarkets says that these types of businesses only make sense if they expand at the speed of light. His first online wedding company, Bodaclick, was listed on the MAB and ended up in liquidation. “You have to take advantage of the globality offered by the Internet. You are worth much more the more you lose. It happened to Amazon, which took many years to give benefits. ” Del Val is guided by the new metrics that reign in the virtual world: traffic, number of users, visits, followers … Profitability seems to be lost sight of, although perhaps not so much. “For me it is also essential to know that I am winning in each order,” he recalls.

“The growth is complicated, it brings disorder, you have to go through everything to respond to the volume.” The Lola Market model is known and replicated by many of these new businesses. They are an aggregator: they have neither distributors nor stores, they only connect them through a platform that leads to the client. His personal shopper are, as Pérez defines, “independent contractor”. Translated into Spanish, its distributors are autonomous. The platform charges for each order made by the user and receives a percentage of the volume invoiced from the supermarket. Enter by both parties.

Finance the brick


The most represented sectors

Construction of residential buildings

Freight transport by road

Restaurants and food stands

Specialized construction activities

Engineering technical services

Metallic carpentry manufacturing

Plumbing and air conditioning installations

Electrical installations

Information and computer technologies

The most represented sectors

Construction of residential buildings

Freight transport by road

Restaurants and food stands

Specialized construction activities

Engineering technical services

Metallic carpentry manufacturing

Plumbing and air conditioning installations

Electrical installations

Information and computer technologies

The most represented sectors

Construction of residential buildings

Freight transport by road

Restaurants and food stands

Specialized construction activities

Engineering technical services

Metallic carpentry manufacturing

Plumbing and air conditioning installations

Electrical installations

Information and computer technologies

These are the 800 fastest growing young companies in Spain



Housers, born in 2015, is also the daughter of technology. It is dedicated, says Juan Antonio Balcázar, its CEO and founder, to the crowfunding real estate: raising capital to finance works. The magic words of the new economy appear in the conversation: financing rounds. “We raise capital through them, we raise up to five million.” Its model allows, through a simple platform, that anyone becomes an investor-promoter. It only takes 50 euros. “We have financed 265 projects, we have more than 110 million raised, we have already closed 65 works with an average return of 9.22%.” Housers charges the developer who needs liquidity and also receives money from investors.


Distribution by provinces

Madrid, Barcelona and the Mediterranean coast accumulate more than 60% of the companies analyzed

Distribution by provinces

Madrid, Barcelona and the Mediterranean coast accumulate more than 60% of the companies analyzed

Distribution by provinces

Madrid, Barcelona and the Mediterranean coast accumulate more than 60% of the companies analyzed

These are the 800 fastest growing young companies in Spain



Although sometimes it is not about innovating with an idea of ​​the new economy: it is enough to get a life-long business with work and vision. Gregorio Rodríguez is one of the two partners of Jiroca, a restaurant in Villafranca del Campo, Teruel. It is on the A-23 highway, which connects Valencia with France through Aragon, in the middle of nowhere. But it offers about 200 meals a day, has parking, showers for truckers and a 14-meter bar full of freshly made snacks, tapas and skewers. “We run away from self-service, from fast food. We spend a lot of time preparing the schedules, cleaning procedures and customer service. ” Speak with passion of your employees. “It is very difficult to get 32 ​​people here, when you are surrounded by populations of 200 inhabitants at most. We have made continuous training plans, including languages. ”

The formation is the strong point of another gazelle, the Cefes de Zaragoza school. Some 6,000 students go through their face-to-face or virtual classes. “How do you grow? Juggling. We have been four years and we are 50 people ”, says Luis González, its owner. Every three months he tells his employees how the accounts are going and reinvests everything he earns. In 2018 it already invoiced 1.5 million.

Although not everything is a path of roses. In the construction company Taresco, they list the difficulties that SMEs have to overcome, where appropriate in the construction sector: a difficult economic context, low public investment, private investment panic, access to financing restricted by the low confidence of banks, Payments to short-term suppliers and long-term customer charges, recurring delinquency, high taxes, no public assistance and few tax advantages for start-up companies. Pedro Aranda, who has a small plumbing company in Granada, Ofiteca, complains about similar things. “We have started working for powerful clients. It is difficult to maintain a high level of quality and to serve a certain confidence. Banks have to present realistic accounts, because without money we can do nothing. ” Your stone in the shoe is in VAT refunds. “Hacienda takes a long time [en reembolsarlas], and if you don’t have financial muscle, you can’t grow. ”

And without significant initial capital it is also difficult to start. “When you want to be disruptive in a market, you can be an entrepreneur who bundles the blanket with your money or go to the venture capital,” says Enrique Domínguez. Talk about the latter model having a better risk. “Many multinationals are creating subsidiaries with highly trained people or contacting entrepreneurs so that their companies grow within the parent company, sheltering it. They benefit that in a start-up the level of bureaucracy is much lower. ”

Perhaps of the 834 companies identified in the ranking, many die. But others may be the multinationals of the future. Those who know that “if the opportunity does not call you, it is best to build a door.”

Tips not to die of success

Burn capital Two cursed words for many companies that have based their progress on successive rounds of financing without an idea of ​​sustainability on the horizon. “It’s a serious problem,” says Anindya Saha, founder of Nero Ventures and EAE professor. “In addition, we take for granted that our country is not the one that insures the most liquidity, neither from the risk capital nor from the banks.” So very technological firms have a hard time. Many, moreover, are poorly prepared to face a sudden increase in size. “Growing more than 100% annually is not possible without generating great chaos within the company. So you cannot attack several countries and at the same time increase staff or have all the financial part controlled when you take that leap. In some companies that chaos becomes a habit. ” The problem is that when the bicycle stops pedaling and collapses, the entire ecosystem they have created falls with them. “The play can become binary, win or lose.” In traditional companies, Saha says that everything is much tighter. “They must approach the business wisely. In the toughest moments, being able to lower fixed costs and adjust their margins even below 10%. ” A caution that recommends moving to the bank. “Maintain a minimum base to finance your own projects.” And to think that outside of Madrid and Barcelona, ​​where start-ups are concentrated due to the accumulation of capital, there is also life.

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