FAST-GROWING energy firm Anesco has received a top award from Virgin boss Sir Richard Branson.

The company, based at Easter Park, near Silchester, received the fastest growing company award for 2013 in the prestigious Sunday Times Virgin Fast Track 100.

The high-profile league table highlights the top 100 private companies who have had the fastest-growing sales over their latest three years.

Sir Richard congratulated the Fast Track 100 companies on their success and called on entrepreneurs to take advantage of the economic recovery to grow their businesses and increase exports.

The Fast Track 100 annual conference and awards dinner, held at Sir Richard’s Oxfordshire home, celebrates the best of British entrepreneurship, bringing together the founders and directors of the UK’s private companies with the fastest-growing sales.

The accolade follows an outstanding year for Anesco, which has seen the company increase its revenue by 257 per cent, grow its team by over a quarter and become one of the youngest companies to achieve a RoSPA Gold Award for occupational health and safety.

After growing revenue from £21million to £55.1m in the last financial year, the company has exceeded its goal of £100m by financial year end March 2014.

Anesco chief executive Adrian Pike said: “It was a real honour to receive the award from Sir Richard at such a brilliant event. To be ranked number one in the UK is such a tremendous accolade for the whole team.

“Last year was an absolutely phenomenal year for Anesco. We achieved so much and that’s down to the team we’ve pulled together and all their hard work.

“People are at the heart of what we do and that’s why we’re so proud of our Investors in People gold standard. We wouldn’t be where we are today without their dedication.”

Sustained growth has seen Anesco achieve a workforce of 102 permanent employees, with up to 350 contractors employed at any one time and more than 30 supply chain partners and logistics staff.

Through its work with businesses, local authorities and homeowners, Anesco has helped to take over 40,000 people out of fuel poverty. The renewable technologies it has deployed are now generating enough power for more than 45,000 homes, saving over 72,000 tons of carbon per year.

“There’s a mantra we use at Anesco – ‘have fun, make a difference and make money’, and that’s exactly what we’ve done,” said Adrian.

“Five months in, and 2014 is already shaping up to be a fantastic year as we expand into new markets and begin taking on our first projects outside of the UK.

“As an industry, energy efficiency is a great one to be in, and we continue to go from strength to strength.”