Exeter-based Flybe rated 98th in top 100 businesses

image captionFlybe is the only South West company to make the top 100

A Devon-based airline has been rated as one of the UK's top 100 private companies.

Flybe achieved 98th place in the annual Sunday Times Deloitte league table.

Despite poor economic conditions and disruption caused by the volcanic ash from Iceland, the Exeter carrier recently reported an 8% rise in sales.

The company operates services to Newquay, Cornwall and the Channel Islands of Jersey and Guernsey among its 180 domestic and European routes.

Flybe said it had carried 7.3m passengers during the past 12 months.

Last year Flybe was placed in the top 250 private companies.

Chief executive officer Jim French described its new ranking of 98 as a "great achievement".

"The fact that we are the only company in it from Devon and Cornwall is an even bigger thrill," he said.

"We're proud to be a regional champion and look forward to many more years of growth that supports the local Exeter economy."

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