Data scoop: List of private companies shows growth, especially for companies that give loans or cheese


Let’s start at the top of the list, where there’s a new list leader: Great Lakes Cheese of Hiram reached $ 4 billion in 2020, up 11% from 2019, overtaking Medical Mutual of Ohio, which was in the lead since 2016 And that 11% equates to roughly $ 400 million.

But as a percentage, one industry absolutely destroyed all the others in 2020: mortgage lenders. If you reclassified the full numeric list as a percentage of growth, the top three companies would all be non-bank mortgage lenders, with CrossCountry Mortgage being the largest at # 7 on the list and the fastest growing as it has seen growth in revenue 251% in 2020. The other two companies, Union Home Mortgage and Nations Lending, have both more than doubled in size. This growth, fueled by low interest rates and a strong housing market, is expected to slow significantly in 2021. For example, CrossCountry is forecasting a more normal 8% increase in 2021 and Union Home Mortgage is forecasting a 6% drop.

Another fast-growing top 20 company, Hudson-based Leaf Home, which provides gutter filters and other home products, saw revenue increase 84% in 2020, topping $ 1 billion for the first time.

Who has not done so well? On average, local auto dealers and other businesses related to the auto industry struggled in 2020. In addition, the Cleveland Browns, Cleveland Cavaliers, and Cleveland Indians saw rare drops in income due to the restrictions. COVID-19, according to Forbes estimates. Indians were hit particularly hard, due to a shortened 2020 season and baseball’s heavy reliance on ticket sales, which disappeared as fans were not allowed in the stands. Forbes estimates that Indians made $ 117 million in 2020, down 59%.

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