thebigword to go public as it targets one billion users

thebigword chief executive Larry Gould
thebigword chief executive Larry Gould
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Language and technology firm thebigword has revealed its plans to go public by 2020.

The £47.5m-turnover business, which was founded by chief executive Larry Gould, set out an aggressive strategy for growth over the next four years.

Part of this are ambitions to grow turnover to £175m and reach one billion users globally by developing responsive and easily-accessible mobile technology.

The Leeds-based company currently has 600 employees globally and works with works with 12,000 linguists in 73 countries.

Its clients include Google, GE and Rolls-Royce, as well as contracts to serve the UK and US governments.

By 2019, it aims to have reached organic growth of £75m, with an additional £100m in turnover from acquisitions and partnerships.

Chief commercial officer Joshua Gould told the company’s annual conference: “It’s our mission to eradicate the final barrier to global trade, but also communication.

“It’s so vital, this mission - it can only be done by creating the most accessible, the most scalable language company in the world.”

The aim to grow to one billion users will create “a legacy” that will at times require sacrifice, he added.

He said: “The nice news is, when we do get there, our intention is to take thebigword public.

“Our intention is to return some of the shares back to everyone who has been part of our dream.”

Chief financial officer Matthew Toynton said the firm will continue to spend £1m to £2m on development each year.

Between 2017 and 2018, key projects and integration will have been completed, delivering £175m revenue, up to 30 per cent workforce growth and profit margins of between 15 and 20 per cent by 2019, he said.

Founder Larry Gould said: “A lot of those plans are based on technology developments, which is really the main driver for our strategy for growth.”