Two logistics operations, a regional retailer, a steel processor and a car dealership have topped a list of Suffolk's 100 highest-grossing companies.

Turners of Soham, Maritime Transport, East of England Co-op, AJN Steelstock and Marriott Holdings were the top performers in the latest Suffolk Limited report, which is compiled by accountants Grant Thornton in collaboration with law firm Birketts.

Turners of Soham Ltd achieved the overall highest turnover in 2022 at more than £519m while Maritime Group reported the largest absolute increase in turnover of £111m to £416m.

Turners of Soham also posted the largest increase in operating profit at just over £29m.

The overall performance of the companies suggests that the county's top businesses  bounced back after Covid and are now surpassing 2019 pre-pandemic levels.

Total turnover for the county’s top 100 companies reached £5.6bn in 2022 - up 10% on 2021, according to the figures.

Overall, the 100 companies achieved a 60% increase in combined operating profits this year compared to 2019.

Total combined employee numbers were also up by 2.4% compared to 2019 - and combined turnover was just 0.1% down on 2019.

This was in spite of several larger companies from 2019 leaving the list because they had been acquired by larger groups. Grant Thornton said this suggested that the "true" turnover figure would have been even higher.

But the list is based on businesses which are owned and managed within the county and excludes large businesses owned overseas, or where management or control is outside the county. These include Greene King, which is based in Bury St Edmunds but is Chinese-owned.

Average pay has also risen among the top 100 companies and now stands at nearly £32,000 - a rise of nearly 6% on the last year and 11% compared to pre-pandemic levels.

The three sectors employing the most staff in the county remain transport & motor retail, retail & wholesale, and services.

Grant Thornton practice leader Tim Taylor said: “The Suffolk Limited report gives us a great opportunity to assess how Suffolk’s economy has fared over the past year by providing a real measure of the wealth created, retained and re-invested by the county’s key business decision makers.

“We can see that not only are Suffolk’s leading companies doing well compared to last year, but we can officially say that the top 100 businesses are now marching ahead of where they were prior to the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. This comes despite another turbulent 12 months, which is a real testament to the resilience and drive of those companies.

Rob Thomson, who head of Grant Thornton's Suffolk Tax business, said: “Not only is turnover up to an impressive £5.6bn, but our analysis shows that there is growth in both fixed and current assets, while liabilities and overall debt has fallen.

"When combined with the fact that businesses are continuing to invest in infrastructure while increasing cash levels, Suffolk’s companies seem well prepared to meet the current cost-of-living challenges and inflationary pressures.”

Birketts chief executive Jonathan Agar said: “While the past couple of years have been incredibly challenging for businesses, it is encouraging to see that Suffolk’s leading companies have not just bounced back to where they were before the pandemic, but achieved even more growth.

"To have surpassed pre-pandemic trading levels proves just how resilient and stable the county’s businesses have become. There is no doubt that the next 12-24 months will be equally as testing, but these latest findings provide confidence that Suffolk’s businesses can navigate these challenges and still prosper.”