Class of 2009 SME success stories

POSTED: 19th May 2015
IN: Business news

As Aldermore celebrates its sixth birthday, the Bank looks back at some of the other SME success stories from 2009.

undefinedLife for Aldermore has changed a lot since the business first formed in 2009. The Bank has grown to include over 850 employees, serving the financial needs of more than 160,000 businesses, savers and homebuyers and picking up numerous awards along the way.

Now passing the six-year mark, Aldermore takes the time to look at other businesses launched in 2009 that have gone on to make a name for themselves in the UK and overseas.


Formed in Manchester by co-founders Howard Simms, Garry Partington, Adam Fleming and Nick Blacck, Apadmi has gone on to develop innovative tablet and smartphone applications for a number of high-profile clients, including the Guardian, Skyscanner and Lexus. Most notably, the firm developed the BBC iPlayer Radio app, and in 2014 was named one of the top 10 global mobile gaming developers by Washington DC research firm SourcingLine.

Museums Press

Small publishing company Museums Press was formed in Glasgow by Matthew Walkerdine and Jessica Susan Higgins, curating work from the brightest designers and artists into regular packages encompassing posters, prints and more. In 2011, the pair also set up exhibition space Good Press in order to create another platform for independent art publications and events.

One Fine Stay

Walking through London’s Mayfair district, now CEO Greg Marsh was struck by the number of high-end homes lying empty while the owners were away, spotting a wasted opportunity to rent these prime properties out to luxury travellers. Together with co-founders Demetrios Zoppos, Tim Davey and Evan Frank, he set up the One Fine Stay website to match homeowners with guests, earning critical acclaim from the likes of Vogue and the Financial Times.

Yoga Bellies

Established yoga teacher Cheryl MacDonald decided to design classes to help women improve their physical and mental wellbeing throughout pregnancy and beyond, later branching out to also deliver yoga sessions for children. Witnessing demand grow for these services, she then saw an opportunity to develop a global franchise model for the business, gaining support from Dragon’s Den investor Duncan Bannatyne along the way.

Ve Interactive

Under the leadership of CEO and co-founder David Brown, Ve Interactive already has an impressive list of awards to its name, from UK National Champion at the 2013-14 European Business Awards, to Digital Champion in the 2014 Growing Business Awards. The software company develops a range of marketing and sales applications to help firms attract and covert customers, now encompassing 12 international offices and supporting more than 4,500 business customers.

Aldermore is glad to share the Bank’s birthday year with this group of growing SMEs, and others like them, and hopes to hear more from these inspiring six-year old businesses in the future.

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