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Top 10 Oldest Companies In The UK

Do you know that many of the products and services we use in our everyday life come from companies that date back more than 300 years ago? In the UK, there are a lot of such companies with great historical backgrounds.

  1. The Royal Mint
    The foundation of the Royal Mint dates back to 886 AD. The headquarters are in Llantrisant, UK. Its main objective is the production of coins and medals, while it is wholly owned by HM Treasury of the United Kingdom. It is a limited company. The Royal Mint started its operation when the Great, King of Wessex – after regaining London from the Danelaw – decided to issue silver pennies with his portrait. Firstly, it was located in the Tower of London and then transferred.

  2. Cambridge University Press
    The global publishing company with sales all over the world and offices in more than 40 countries was founded in 1534 by Henry VIII of England. It is the oldest publishing company in the world. The second oldest one is Oxford University Press. Its headquarters are in Cambridge, and Peter Phillips holds the position of CEO.

  3. The London Gazette
    The English newspaper was first published on November 7th, 1665. Thus, it is the oldest newspaper in the world without having stopped its release all these years. Its first title was The Oxford Gazette. Of course, it is one of the formal journals of the government in the United Kingdom. The London Gazette is a daily newspaper.

  4. C. Hoare & Co.
    The bank is owned by the Hoare family and, as you can understand, is a family business that dates back 12 generations. It first began its operation in 1672. The bank is located in London. Anyone interested can learn more about the history of the private bank by visiting the museum that its owners created at 37 Fleet Street. Through the years, the bank had important clients such as John Dryden, Jane Austen, and Lord Byron. It went through two World Wars and periods of recession but managed to remain strong.

  5. Barclays
    Another old company in the United Kingdom. It was founded on November 17th, 1690. After several acquisitions, Barclays became the bank we see nowadays. C. S. Venkatakrishnan holds the position of CEO. Barclays is a global bank that offers multi services such as banking, wealth, and investment management in more than 50 countries, while its clients seem to be almost 50 million.

  6. Twinings
    Thomas Twining founded the company in 1706. The company delivers tea and some other beverages, including coffee and hot chocolate. The headquarters are in Andover, Hampshire. Also, the company’s logo did not change since 1787, when it was first created. Through the years, Twinings was obtained by Associated British Foods, which now owns the brand.

  7. Wedgwood
    The company was founded on May 1st, 1759, by the potter Josiah Wedgwood. The company produces porcelain items. In 1895 the company was renamed Josiah Wedgwood and Sons Ltd. The success did not delay come and thus became an important “player” in Staffordshire pottery. Soon the company’s fame was spread not only in Europe but also in the USA. One of its most known products is a plate called “Wedgwood blue.”

  8. British Gas
    British Gas was founded in 1812 by Frederick Albert Winsor, becoming the first public company in the world in the sector of energy. The company’s expansion through the years was significant, and thus today, it is serving not only households but also businesses in the United Kingdom. Nowadays, the company is a subsidiary of Centrica.

  9. Cadbury
    Cadbury was first operated in 1824 by John Cadbury in Birmingham. John Cadbury used to sell tea and coffee in the beginning mainly. Steadily, with the help of some members of his family, the company started to expand, including many other chocolate products in its portfolio. Nowadays, the company is owned by Mondelez International.

  10. Clarks
    Cyrus Clark and James Clark founded the company in 1825. The headquarters are in the Street, Somerset, England. The company all these years hasn’t changed its premises. The footwear products of the company are well known all over the world. However, the Desert Boot is its bestseller. Nowadays, the company has more than 13.000 employees.

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Maria Gourtsilidou
Maria Gourtsilidou is Senior Editor of Research and Data Analytics at the CEOWORLD magazine. She is responsible for driving thought leadership, using data analytics to showcase the company’s products and services, and fostering knowledge sharing between CEOWORLD magazine and client organizations. She studied Public Administration (Economics Of The Public Sector) in Greece and holds a Bachelor’s in Public Administration from the Panteion University of Political & Social Studies. Follow Maria Gourtsilidou on Twitter. Write at