Top 100 AIM shares
AIM is the most successful growth market in the world and offers investors some unique opportunities and benefits. We have a look at the top 100 AIM stocks.
AIM was launched by the London Stock Exchange (LSE) in 1995, starting life with just 10 companies worth £82 million. Since then, over 3,600 businesses have graced AIM and raised almost £113 billion from investors. The companies listed on AIM – from both the UK and abroad – make a significant impact on the UK economy, contributing over £15 billion in annual gross domestic product (GDP), more than some of the country’s biggest industries such as aerospace, automotive, defence or pharmaceuticals.
Why do companies join AIM?
'AIM is the most successful growth market in the world' – LSE.
AIM is designed for small and medium sized businesses that wish to list their company on a stock exchange but are not yet ready for a full traditional listing. The main reason businesses choose to go public on AIM is because they need capital to grow, and sourcing other finance can be difficult.
Learn more about investing in the AIM market
The number of AIM initial public offerings (IPOs) has been in decline over the last two years, but four companies have joined the market since the start of 2019 with over £1 billion raised in total. In 2018, 52 new companies joined AIM and raised £1.6 billion, with another 13 existing companies raising a further £3.9 billion. The peak year for IPOs was in 2005 when nearly 400 new companies joined the market, but it has remained below 100 per year ever since the financial crisis.
The market has proven its ability to provide the vital funding needed to nurture small businesses. The majority of funds raised on AIM is by companies that have already listed, demonstrating that firms are able to tap into vital liquidity even after they have conducted their IPO. In the first three months of 2019, the value of monthly trades on AIM averaged around £5 billion, coming in at around 40,000 trades worth a combined £230 million per day.
It also brings companies under a recognised regulatory and compliance framework that sets the standards for listed companies, which gives them higher recognition among investors and important institutions like banks and foreign lenders. However, while the regulatory regime is strict it is designed to make it easy for new businesses to float on AIM; it does not require a business to be of a particular size (as is the case elsewhere), but instead requires a company to have a three year operating history and the ability to demonstrate its worthiness.
Today, there are close to 900 stocks listed on AIM worth almost £100 billion. The vast majority of businesses that list on AIM end up leaving for one reason or the other - some grow and take a step-up to a bigger listing (such as on the Main Market) while some fail and collapse. Others get bought out by peers or are taken back under private control.
How many companies are listed on AIM and where do they come from?
|Number of Companies||Total Month End Market Cap £ billion|
Source: London Stock Exchange, as of end of March 2019
|Business||Market Cap (£ million)||12 month share price %||12 month high||12 month low||April 4 close|
|Burford Capital||Funding provider and litigation finance||3,699.60||20%||2,040p||1,298p||1,709p|
|Fevertree||Maker of mixers for alcoholic drinks||3,501.90||12%||3,956p||2,131p||3,010p|
|Hutchison China MediTech||Biopharmaceuticals||3,152.90||13%||5,600p||3,305p||4,750p|
|ASOS||Online clothing retailer||2,774.50||-53%||7,030p||2,128p||3,134p|
|Abcam||Life sciences and ecommerce||2,353.90||-0.9%||1,536p||1,017p||1,157p|
|Boohoo.com||Online clothing retailer||2,224.5||32%||244.4p||145.5p||194.4p|
|RWS Holdings||Language support services||1,395.10||18%||513p||343.5p||513p|
|Secure Income REIT||Real estate investment||1,330.10||12%||410p||370p||410p|
|Blue Prism||Automation software||1,238.20||18%||2,575p||1,040p||1,555p|
|Clinigen||Pharmaceuticals and clinical trials||1,231.60||3.3%||1,043p||721p||944.7p|
|Dart Group||Airline operator (Jet2.com)||1,163.30||-12%||1,017p||743.5p||809p|
|Breedon Aggregates||Construction materials||1,135.40||-13%||85.5p||55.6p||68.1p|
|GB Group||Identity software and data services||975.80||28%||626p||400p||518p|
|Gamma Communications||Business communications provider||954.10||48%||1,025p||688p||1,030p|
|James Halstead||International manufacturer||928.20||8.8%||480p||367p||440p|
|Hurricane Energy||UK offshore oil producer||897.90||34%||60.05p||34.2p||44.42p|
|Keywords Studios||Service provider for video games||833.80||-18%||2,065p||900p||1,267p|
|First Derivatives||IT services provider and consultant||767.40||-16%||4,660p||2,050p||2,950p|
|Advanced Medical Solutions Group||Wound care dressing manufacturer||693.8||3.2%||370p||260p||323p|
|Craneware||Healthcare support services||687.50||48%||3,585p||1,800p||2,730p|
|Diversified Gas & Oil||US oil and gas producer||686.50||50%||130p||81.2p||126.5p|
|Highland Gold||Russian gold producer||676.80||21%||187.1p||128p||186.4p|
|Smart Metering Systems||Utility connections and smart meters||641.50||-21%||831p||497p||563p|
|Nichols||Drinks maker (including Vimto)||595.00||7.9%||1,712.5p||1,240p||1,600p|
|Draper Esprit||European tech venture capital||594.30||11%||645p||437p||493p|
|Applegreen||Irish fuel court operator||574.10||-9%||577p||460p||460p|
|Watkin Jones||UK construction||566.70||18%||232.5p||187.4p||221.5p|
|Johnston Service Group||Textile rental||509.10||1.2%||145.2p||113.6p||136p|
|Polaris Capital Holdings||Global investment manager||488.20||2%||729p||452p||516p|
|Learning Technologies Group||Workplace training and HR software||484.80||-14%||166.5p||62.2p||71p|
|YouGov||Pollster and data company||471.90||5.8%||500p||382.5p||435p|
|Scapa Group||Bonding and adhesive manufacturer||462.40||-40%||509p||275.8p||308.5p|
|Midwich Group||Audio Visual (AV) supplier||460.80||10%||685p||491.5p||566p|
|Young & Co||Brewery and alcoholic drinks seller||456.00||-1%||1,830p||1,322p||1,590p|
|SafeCharge International||Payment solutions provider||453.00||2.4%||355p||225p||299p|
|Next Fifteen Communications Group||Public Relations (PR) firm||451.60||18%||599p||446.5p||532p|
|Central Asia Metals||Copper, lead and zinc miner||449.70||-19.5%||328p||203p||257.5p|
|IG Design||Gift packaging and greeting cards||416.40||41%||607p||371.5p||532p|
|Purplebricks||Online estate agent||418.10||-56%||410p||124p||138p|
|Frontier Developments||Video game developer||414.50||-19%||1,825p||740p||1,084p|
|CVS Group||Veterinary services||414.40||-40%||1,160p||401p||582p|
|Oakley Capital Investments||Private equity funds||405.70||17%||201p||165p||196.1p|
|Hotel Chocolat||Chocolate retailer||386.50||-2.1%||400p||253p||347.5p|
|Eddie Stobart||End-to-end logistics||379.40||-20%||145.5p||85.5p||98.8p|
|Restore||Document management services||379.30||-45%||576p||265p||310p|
|Redde||Claims management and legal services||366.80||-30%||195.8p||90p||122p|
|Caretech Holdings||Residential care homes||362.60||-13.5%||418p||325p||330p|
|MP Evans||Indonesian palm oil producer||357.90||-12%||800p||637p||660p|
|Thorpe (FW)||Lighting manufacturer||353.00||4.3%||340p||248p||307.3p|
|Team17 Group||Video game publisher||349.20||21%||292.5p||181p||280p|
|Codemasters Group||Video game publisher (racing)||340.20||-10%||275p||133.5p||235p|
|M&C Saatchi||Advertising agency||333.40||-1.8%||410p||270p||378p|
|AB Dynamics||Testing systems for motor industry||321.8||86%||1,880p||860p||1,717p|
|Gooch & Housego||Photonics, optics and coatings||320.10||-2.8%||1,880p||1,130p||1,200p|
|Atalaya Mining||Copper and silver miner||312.50||8.6%||260p||188p||234p|
|Renew Holdings||Infrastructure engineering services||310.30||3.8%||440p||333p||397p|
|Strix Group||Hot water safety equipment||304.00||24%||174.6p||130p||160p|
|Eco Animal Health Group||Animal pharmaceuticals||299.80||-20%||581p||367p||436p|
|Serica Energy||UK offshore oil producer||293.40||69%||142p||57.4p||112.4p|
|Camellia||Agriculture, food and engineering||290.00||-10%||12,900p||9,100p||10,300p|
|Impax Asset Management||Asset management||289.50||50%||278p||153.5p||230p|
|Mortgage Advice Bureau||Mortgage advisor||278.00||-13%||720p||490p||584p|
|WANdisco||Data management and services||277.90||-26%||1,250p||340p||601.4p|
|Boku||Payment solutions provider||271.50||32%||184p||68.5p||108p|
|Alpha FX Group||Foreign exchange consultancy||270.30||48%||730p||488p||730p|
|Numis||Stockbroker and corporate adviser||259.80||-35%||440p||221.5p||249p|
|Accesso Technology||Virtual queuing and ticketing software||254.10||-58%||2,975p||720p||980p|
|Alpha Financial Markets||Financial consultancy||253.80||58%||272p||160.5p||252.5p|
|Horizon Discovery||Genomics and drug discovery||246.70||23%||242.5p||133p||164p|
|Andrews Sykes||Hire company for boilers, pumps etc…||246.70||8.1%||647.5p||475p||585p|
|CREO Medical||Surgical equipment||243.10||59%||243p||114.5p||196p|
|Earthport||Cross-border payments and FX||237.60||238%||5.61p||48p||36.4p|
|Brooks Macdonald||Investment manager||236.80||-7.2%||2,195p||1,367.5p||1,720p|
|Joules Group||Clothing and homeware||235.30||-9%||387p||207p||284p|
|Premier Asset Management||Asset manager||225.40||-4.9%||310p||165p||213p|
|Savannah Petroleum||Nigerian oil producer||215.50||-9.8%||34.5p||24.1p||24.3p|
|Somero Enterprise||Concrete placing tools||202.80||-2.7%||425p||278p||356.5p|
|Sumo Group||Turnkey video game development||202.60||36%||185p||96p||135.1p|
|Crystal Amber Fund||UK Small/Mid-cap equity investor||199.80||2%||236p||192p||202p|
|Quixant||Gaming machine manufacturer||195.80||-28%||488p||277.5p||294.5p|
|Loopup Group||Business communications services||172.30||-27%||498p||277.5p||308p|
|Majestic Wine||Wine retailer||159.80||-42%||485p||219.5p||221p|
Source: London Stock Exchange FTSE AIM 100 Index constituents as of April 4 2019. Excludes three stocks which trade in euros: Eland Oil & Gas, Greencoat Renewables, and Summit Therapeutics
Burford Capital: world's largest provider of arbitration and litigation finance
Burford Capital was founded in 2009 when its chief executive Christopher Bogart wielded funds raised from working as general counsel to Time Warner on its merger with AOL. The company was a pioneer in providing institutional-quality commercial litigation finance and aims to 'address the impact of unequal financial resources on litigation outcomes'.
The company’s income is derived from providing litigation finance as well as risk management and asset recovery services to its clients and law firms around the world. Burford’s most recent results showed it delivered its ninth consecutive year of profitable growth, with income rising 23% year-on-year (YoY) to $420.4 million to push pretax profit 19% higher to $315.5 million. That allowed the firm to up its dividend for the year by 14% to 12.5 cents per share.
Burford is bullish on its future. The company had a particularly strong year in 2017 when demand for its capital was three times higher than the year before but warned it could have been a ‘one-off anomaly’. However, it has said the 'consistently high demand' for capital, with new investments broadly level year-on-year at $1.3 billion in 2018, means this was not the case. 'Burford has committed $2.6 billion to new investments in just the last two years, more than twice its lifetime cumulative commitment level prior to that time. That is extraordinary and suggests a sea change has occurred in the legal finance marketplace,' said Bogart following the 2018 preliminary results.
Fevertree Drinks: the upmarket mixer maker
Fevertree Drinks, which produces premium mixers for alcoholic beverages, has been a soaring success since listing in 2014, having more than trebled in value since the middle of 2016. The company has triumphed off the back of the booming market for premium spirits, starting with gin and gradually moving to dark rum and others.
Fevertree is the most popular mixer brand in the UK off-trade (supermarkets and stores) and it is still growing its position in on-trade (pubs and restaurants). It is also expanding in both the US and Europe. Revenue in 2018 rose nearly 40% in 2018 to £237.4 million to push pretax profit 34% higher to £75.6 million. As a result, it raised its dividend by a similar rate to 14.5p from 10.65p.
The primary reason that Fevertree has been able to grow significantly over the years is because it largely outsources key operations like manufacturing, which means it does rely on partners to make it more exposed to third-party risk.
Hutchinson China MediTech: the biopharma and pharma stock
Hutchinson China MediTech is a biopharmaceutical company pursuing treatments for oncology and immunological diseases. It currently generates revenue by manufacturing and distributing prescription drugs and other health products to consumers in China. It is majority-owned by CK Hutchison Holdings Limited, a conglomerate with annual sales of over $500 billion.
Last year was mixed for China MediTech. Revenue declined for the first time in years to $214.1 million from $241.2 million in 2017, with its pretax loss ballooning to $86.7 million from $53.5 million. Although it is hoping to secure regulatory approval for three of its new drugs over the next three years, research & development (R&D) is burning through cash at the moment.
ASOS: fast fashion for millennials
ASOS has been one of the biggest beneficiaries of the transition to online shopping that has left bricks-and-mortar retailers struggling. The online fashion retailer has continued to deliver growth in its core UK market as well as expansionary geographies in the US and Europe, but it has seen a slowdown. Total retail sales grew 26% in the 12 months to the end of August 2018 but that has slowed to 13% in the subsequent six-month period.
The company is having to raise investment in areas like marketing and pricing. As a result, It has said sales in the current financial year to the end of August 2019 are still expected to grow by 15% but says its retail gross margin will tighten while its wafer-thin earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) margin will remain unchanged at 2%.
Abcam: a profitable biopharma business
Abcam produces antibodies mostly used for research purposes and protein-analysis tools. Abcam’s interim results for the six months to the end of 2018 showed an acceleration in revenue growth of 11% to £124.7 million but a slowdown in pre-tax profit growth of only 2.7% to £33.7 million. The interim dividend was raised 3.55p from 3.42p the year before.
Abcam has said it aims to keep on its ‘low double-digit growth trajectory with attractive margins’ and said its annual adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) margin will be around 35% in 2019 compared to 35.6% in the first half, down from 38.0% the year before.
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