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Forbes Names the Top Publicly Traded Small Businesses

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Despite the rocky economic conditions over the past several years, many small businesses have fought the odds and are succeeding.

Among those is Questcor Pharmaceuticals, which tops this year's 35th annual ranking of the best small businesses in the United States by Forbes magazine. This is the second time in three years that Questcor, one of 11 health care companies to make the Top 100, headed up the rankings.

Focused on the treatment of patients with serious and difficult-to-treat autoimmune and inflammatory disorders, Questcor has seen sales increase 81 percent in last year and 51 percent annually over the past five years. Additionally, the company was also a top performing stock, up 219 percent in the last 12 months.

To be considered for the Forbes rankings, companies must have been publicly traded for at least a year, generate annual revenue between $5 million and $1 billion and have a stock price no lower than $5 a share. Forbes then ranked companies based on earnings growth, sales growth and return on equity in the past 12 months and over five years. They also factored in stock performance versus each company's peer group during the last year and discounted [SM1] companies that were in the midst of legal trouble.

Other small businesses ranking in the top 10 include:

  • Grand Canyon Education: $558 million in sales and 39 percent sales growth
  • Proto Labs: $143 million in sales and 30 percent sales growth
  • InvenSense: $225 million in sales and 86 percent sales growth
  • Sturm, Ruger & Co. [SM2]: $595 million in sales and 24 percent sales growth
  • EPAM Systems: $493 million in sales and 30 percent sales growth
  • Cirrus Logic: $866 million in sales and 36 percent sales growth
  • US Silica Holdings: $487 million in sales and 14 percent sales growth
  • FleetCor Technologies: $804 million in sales and 20 percent sales growth
  • Annie's: $175 million in sales and 17 percent sales growth

The top 100 small businesses can be viewed in the Oct. 28 issue of Forbes magazine, as well as on the Forbes website.

Originally published on BusinessNewsDaily.

 [SM1]TK – Do we mean they weren't eligible for the list? Let's clarify language

Chad Brooks

Chad Brooks is a Chicago-based writer who has nearly 15 years' experience in the media business. A graduate of Indiana University, he spent nearly a decade as a staff reporter for the Daily Herald in suburban Chicago, covering a wide array of topics including, local and state government, crime, the legal system and education. Following his years at the newspaper Chad worked in public relations, helping promote small businesses throughout the U.S. Follow him on Twitter.