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South Australia's top 100 companies: 60-41


Today we reveal the third group of companies in InDaily’s South Australian Business Index – our annual review of the top private and public companies in the state.

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South Australian Business Index 2021

InDaily’s annual ranking of the state’s top 100 companies by market capitalisation and revenue covers the 2020-21 financial year and includes more volatility than usual, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The list, compiled for InDaily by Adelaide financial services firm Taylor Collison, is the state’s most definitive guide to our top companies (scroll to the bottom of the page for eligibility criteria).

The countdown began on Monday and yesterday, with the companies ranked 100 to 81 and 80 to 61, and will continue all week – with the top 20 and full list revealed on Friday.

The winners of the individual awards – the”rising star” award for the company that has jumped furthest up the rankings, a revenue growth award, one recognising the best new entrant to the Index and a new award this year for the standout large employer – will also be announced on Friday.

In today’s group of companies, Tonsley-based technologies SAGE Group and Micro-X continue to perform strongly in the South Australian Business Index.

SAGE, which has a team of 450 people across three continents, 13 offices and five companies, specialises in developing Industry 4.0 efficiency solutions for a range of industries including manufacturing, resources, utilities and infrastructure.

The group grew its revenues by more than 12 per cent in 2020-21 to $125.2 million and maintained its place at No. 57 on the South Australian Business Index.

Just across the floor of Tonsley’s Main Assembly Building, where Chryslers and then Mitsubishis were manufactured from 1964 to 2008, is Micro-X.

The listed company moved to Adelaide from Melbourne in 2015 and specialises in lightweight x-ray machines. It launched its first mobile x-ray machine in 2017 and is also branching out into airport scanners.

While the company is yet to make a profit and posted a $14.7 million loss after tax in 2020-21, it also embarked on a $31 million capital raise this year to fuel its growth.

This helped it to jump 10 places in the index this year to No. 50.

In a further boost, Micro-X this month finalised two contracts with the US Government’s Department of Homeland Security to design and manufacture a miniature x-ray baggage scanner to be used in a self-screening portal for airport passengers.

Fellow biomedical company Bionomics was another big mover in the section, rising 15 places to 48.  The company is aiming to develop innovative therapies for central nervous disorders and increased its market capitalisation to $166 million despite not generating any revenue.

SA-based wine companies Australian Vintage Limited and merchants Samuel Smith & Son grew their revenues in 2020-21.

AVL, which produces brands including McGuigan, Nepenthe and Tempus Two, enjoyed strong sales growth in the UK and early success with its zero alcohol wines to improve two places in the list to No. 46 while Samuel Smith was down slightly to 42.

Taylor Collison senior adviser Rob Rorrison said although AVL had enjoyed recent success, like all primary producers it faced ongoing risks.

“AVL is reaping the benefits of good planning over a long period of time, and finally they have had the quality of vintages to back up that strategy and benefited, relatively to their peers, from only a small exposure to the China market,” he said.

“But remember it remains an agriculture-based industry so will always have volatility in their bottom line.”

Beauty company Silk Laser was listed on the ASX in December 2020 at a share price of $3.51 after raising $83.5m with a number of notable institutions taking substantial positions.

The share price grew to $4.60 by September 30, helping it to achieve a market cap of $277 million and lifting it 15 places in the South Australian Business Index to No. 41.

Taylor Collison senior adviser Rob Rorrison said Silk Laser’s revenue of $58.9 million in 2020-21 was up 52 per cent on the previous year.

“Silk Laser’s investment thesis was built around the idea that people locked at home unable to travel and spend money going out would increase their spending on beauty,” he said.

“The thesis proved correct.”

60. Guidera O’Connor

Sector: Building and construction | Revenue: $84m | Last Year’s Ranking: 58

Guidera O’Connor provides design and construction services to the Australian water industry.

59. Woods Bagot

Sector: Professional services | Revenue: Undisclosed| Last Year’s Ranking: 53

Woods Bagot is a global architecture, design and consultancy firm, based in Adelaide.

58. Galipo Food Co

Sector: Food and beverage | Revenue: $147m | Last Year’s Ranking: 55

Galipo Foods is a large-scale supplier to the foodservice industry.

57. SAGE Group Holdings

Sector: Professional services | Revenue: $125m | Last Year’s Ranking: 57

SAGE Group Holdings provides electrical engineering and automation services in Australia.

56. Zerella Holdings

Sector: Agriculture | Revenue: $100m | Last Year’s Ranking: 49

Based in Virginia, Zerella is a major Australian supplier of potatoes, carrots and onions.

55. The Hickinbotham Group

Sector: Building and construction | Revenue: Undisclosed | Last Year’s Ranking: 51

Hickinbotham is a major residential developer, building homes in and around Adelaide.

54. Rex Minerals

Sector: Mining | Revenue: Not meaningful | Last Year’s Ranking: 83

Rex Minerals Limited is a mineral exploration and development company.

53. Maggie Beer Holdings 

Sector: Food and beverage | Revenue: $52.8m | Last Year’s Ranking: Unranked

Maggie Beer Holdings represent four brands of gifting, food and beverage products using Australian ingredients and materials that support local dairy farmers, fruit and vegetable growers.

52. Camms

Sector: Information technology | Revenue: $19.5m | Last Year’s Ranking: Unranked

Camms offer business software with integrated solutions for projects and strategy to help clients manage risk and optimise organisations.

51. Thomson Geer

Sector: Professional services | Revenue: $185m | Last Year’s Ranking: 46

Thomson Geer is a large corporate law firm with 560 staff in offices in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth and Adelaide. 

50. Micro-X

Sector: Healthcare | Revenue: $3.7m | Last Year’s Ranking: 60

Micro-X produces, designs, develops and manufactures a range of ultra-lightweight, mobile x-ray imaging systems for medical and security applications.

49. Lucas Total Contract Solutions

Sector: Civil construction/mining | Revenue: Undisclosed | Last Year’s Ranking: 42

Lucas TCS is a privately-owned civil engineering and construction company, founded over 50 years ago which has worked with some of Australia’s leading mining and resource organisations.

48. Bionomics

Sector: Biotechnology | Revenue: Not meaningful | Last Year’s Ranking: 63

Bionomics is a biopharmaceutical company involved in the development of treatments for central nervous system disorders such as anxiety, depression and Alzheimer’s disease.

47. Duxton Water

Sector: Resources | Revenue: $29.8m | Last Year’s Ranking: 41

Duxton Water Limited is a South Australian investment firm with water entitlements in the Southern Murray Darling Basin.

46. Australian Vintage Limited

Sector: Food and Beverage | Revenue: $274m | Last Year’s Ranking: 48

Australian Vintage Limited is a leading Australian wine company with a fully-integrated wine business model including vineyards, boutique and bulk wine production, packaging, marketing and distribution.

45. Alice Car Centre (Peter Kittle)

Sector: Automotive | Revenue: $406.8m | Last Year’s Ranking: 45

Alice Car Centre is an entity of the Peter Kittle Motor Company, which runs a series of automotive dealerships.

44. AJ & PA McBride

Sector: Agriculture | Revenue: $39.7m | Last Year’s Ranking: 39

The sixth-generation family-owned company has a diverse range of agricultural assets and is one of Australia’s biggest wool producers.

43. Elixir Energy

Sector: Energy | Revenue: Undisclosed | Last Year’s Ranking: Unranked

Elixir Energy is a gas exploration and development company focused on exploring Mongolia for natural gas.

42. Samuel Smith & Son

Sector: Food and Beverage | Revenue: $313m | Last Year’s Ranking: 38

Samuel Smith & Son is a family-owned wine merchant established in 1923, servicing the Australian liquor industry with a portfolio of national and international wines, spirits and premium ales.

41. Silk Laser Australia

Sector: Other | Revenue: $58.9m | Last Year’s Ranking: 56

Silk began with one clinic in South Australia offering a range of cosmetic services, and now has locations across the country.


Companies owned in part or whole by government, government agencies and organisations, and registered charities are not eligible.

While companies don’t have to nominate to be included in the list, which is based on market capitalisation, local businesses are encouraged to put their names forward.

To be eligible a company must be:

Now in its seventh year, the Index has become a key source of data for those with a keen interest in the South Australian economy and business environment.

This list has been updated following the correction of an error made during data compilation. Andromeda Metals has been added at No.26 and NSW-based Ansarada Group (previously No. 54) has been removed from the list.

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