BSI demonstrates resilience with global growth

April 10, 2019

  • Revenue climbs by 8% to £511.9 million despite economic and political headwinds
  • Increased financial resilience with 48% increase in net asset value to £178.3m
  • Global employees grow by 10% to 4,784
  • Brexit contingency plans in place ahead of schedule

BSI, the business improvement company, has announced its results for the year ended 31 December 2018.  Global revenue has climbed for the nineteenth consecutive year to £512 million – an increase of 8% - following a year of significant internal investment.

Key points:

  • Revenue increased by 8% to £511.9m (2017: £473m)
    • Organic revenue at constant exchange grew by 10%
    • New sales orders at constant exchange rates grew by 12%
    • Average revenue per account increased by 12%
    • Revenue in Asia Pacific increased by 11%, in Americas by 8% and in EMEA by 5%
  • Underlying operating profit increased by 4% to £61.8m (2017: £59.5m)
    • Growth was 5% organic and 1% inorganic, with a 2% reduction due to exchange
  • Net asset value increased 48% to £178.3m (2017: £120.3m)

Howard Kerr, Chief Executive, commented: “We have seen a year of significant growth, despite challenging economic, social and political conditions. To ensure that we are a resilient organization – building a solid base for future expansion – we have undertaken a major programme of internal restructuring and investment in order to underpin the growth that has seen our global revenue nearly double in the last six years.

“Key improvements to the internal processes of BSI, such as a new Human Resources Management platform, Assurance Services client portal and Digital Workplace projects – together with a new management structure – will lead to significant efficiency gains for BSI teams all over the globe. This Business Transformation Programme will enable our growing workforce to provide even higher quality services to our wide array of clients across all business streams, reflecting the evolving business landscape that they face on a daily basis.”

BSI’s global footprint continues to grow, with the organization working in 193 countries with over 84,000 organizations. 84% of the FTSE 100 and 81% of the Nikkei 225 now work with BSI – both figures marking a significant increase on last year – while 50% of the Fortune 500 also make up the total client base.

Average revenue per account increased by 12% in 2018, driven by the further expansion of BSI’s range of products and services and a stronger focus on Key Account Management. BSI’s solutions span four business streams; Knowledge, Assurance Services, Regulatory Services and Professional Services. Knowledge is made up of standards, services and information solutions and grew 7%, to revenues of £65.2m. Assurance Services, covering systems certification, product certification including the internationally renowned BSI KitemarkTM and training, grew 5% to £277.4m. Regulatory Services, which includes systems and product certification of medical devices, saw 26% growth to revenues of £92.7m. Professional Services, which covers consultancy and supply chain solutions, grew in revenue by 3% to £76.6m.

The significant growth in revenue of the newly formed Regulatory Services stream reflects major industry changes particularly in the Medical Devices sector. The introduction of new medical and in-vitro diagnostic devices regulations has increased the scale and demand from international clients for continued market access to Europe, leading to a significant investment and focus from BSI in the last year.

Ahead of Britain’s exit from the European Union, BSI – as the UK’s National Standards Body – has continued to work closely with a range of UK government departments (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, the Department for Exiting the European Union and the Department for International Trade), industry and consumers groups. In November 2018, following many months of discussions, Europe’s most important standards bodies agreed that the UK should continue as a full member of CEN and CENELEC (the pan-European standards bodies) after Brexit, guaranteeing BSI and British influence over European standards until at least the end of 2020, whilst a more permanent agreement is put in place.

In December 2018 BSI also achieved designation as an EU notified body in the Netherlands and critical work is being transferred there from the UK notified body. This ensures a continuity of conformity assessment services for clients so that their products meet the EU regulations and directives necessary to access the European Union and European Economic Area, at the same time ensuring continued access to the UK market. BSI’s International Projects division also opened an office in Paris, ensuring its continued participation in EU-funded projects.

New programmes have also been introduced outside Europe. In April 2018, BSI launched the Commonwealth Standards Network – an initiative in partnership with the Department for International Trade and Department for International Development to facilitate trade amongst Commonwealth states. Announced by the Prime Minister, the platform is aimed to promote innovation and trade through the increased use of international standards in the face of tariff concerns and Brexit uncertainty.

Following eight acquisitions between 2015 and 2017 – primarily in Professional Services – the company continued to implement its strategic acquisition plans, with the acquisition of AirCert GmbH in November 2018. Based in Munich, Germany, the specialist Aerospace certification company strengthens BSI’s presence in the sector, allows it to join the group of Aerospace certification bodies that are accredited to DAkkS – the German accreditation body – and supports its global growth strategy for Assurance Services.

In the past 12 months, BSI has become a signatory of the United Nations Global Compact (UNGC). As the world’s largest responsible business and sustainability initiative, BSI’s membership reflects its commitment to social responsibility – a business imperative for the organization’s operations globally. The ten principles outlined in the UNGC regarding human rights, labour, environment and anti-corruption will be supported both through BSI’s internal operations and through the products and services it offers.

Kerr concluded: “The support we received for our Brexit planning has underlined the vital importance of the UK’s presence in the global standards and conformity assessment community and provides greater certainty to our stakeholders. It is clear that BSI’s position as a partner for business has never been more important and we remain steadfast in our commitment to tackle the commercial challenges on the horizon by embedding Organizational Resilience in businesses of all sizes and locations.”

The full online edition of our annual report and financial statements 2018 can be found at


- ENDS -

Notes to Editors:

For a full copy of the report, please contact the press office or download

About BSI

BSI is the business improvement company that enables organizations to turn standards of best practice into habits of excellence. For over a century BSI has championed what good looks like and driven best practice in organizations around the world. Working with 84,000 clients across 193 countries, it is a truly international business with skills and experience across a number of sectors including aerospace, automotive, built environment, food, and healthcare. Through its expertise in Standards Development and Knowledge Solutions, Assurance, Regulatory Services and Professional Services, BSI improves business performance to help clients grow sustainably, manage risk and ultimately be more resilient.


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