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Living with AIM

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by David O'Hara


There are around 1,200 companies listed on AIM today. We are frequently told of their contribution to the economy (usually by people lobbying for special favours from the government) and the importance of these companies to British industry.


Yet many of the companies listed on AIM are foreign or, like their large-cap cousins in the FTSE100, derive much of their revenue overseas.


Just how significant is AIM to the wider public? Certainly while I was growing up (well, getting older) we knew all about a large number of AIM companies because they were football clubs. As a sixth former, I used to walk past Portmeirion's HQ every day and a friend worked on a Saturday in Churchill China's factory shop. Both are AIM-listed today.

Only AIM Products

I've been wondering how an individual would fare if they tried to live their lives buying only from companies with an AIM listing.

Portmeirion Royal Worcester China         



You could start the day by withdrawing money from a branch of the Islamic Bank of Britain. Failing that, if there was no branch nearby, you could pawn your grandmother's jewellery at one of H&T Group's high street branches or an Albermarle and Bond. If you've got the cash, why not pop it in a Mulberry handbag?


Of course, you will need clothes to wear before setting out, these can be purchased online from ASOS or (for the ladies) in-store from Jacques Vert. Wynnstay Group have 28 shops spread across various rural parts of the UK, selling 'good country value' clothing. They have all the kind of products a city dweller has never heard of such as breeks (a bit like trousers), prolapse retainers ('suits ewe Sir') and arm length disposables, in a pack of 100 (don't ask!).

To get to the shops, why not hop on a Dawes Super Galaxy touring bike. They are good enough for Claire Balding in 'Britain By Bike' and are manufactured by Tandem Group.






arm length disposables!


Food and Drink

Elsewhere on the high street, you can buy something for your stomach in one of the increasing number of Prezzo restaurants (possibly served on Churchill tableware). For dessert, Zetar plc produce a huge range of savoury and confectionery items, including cashew nuts covered in Levi Roots' Reggae Reggae sauce and a load of the best sweets and chocolates you can buy in Marks and Spencer's.


Real Good Food make the sugar that sells under the Whitworth's brand, along with a large range of ingredients to satisfy the burgeoning home baking craze. Lees Foods make the snowballs and teacakes we all still love and Finsbury Food do cakes and breads.


What to wash it all down with? There's plenty of choice. One of AIM's largest companies is Nichols plc. You may not have heard of them but we all know their biggest selling product, the Vimto soft drink. This can be purchased carbonated in a can or as a concentrate cordial. Furthermore you can get the Vimto taste from their 'fruit ropes' manufactured under license by Humdinger, a division of Zetar plc.


If you fancy something a bit stronger, there is plenty of choice at Majestic Wine (and now you don't need to buy a full case) but judging by their website I expect they do not stock Blavod Wines and Spirits' black vodka.


Away from food and drink, footballers have 37 5-a-side GOALS football centres to choose from (you can get a drink in their bar too).


If you like any of these products so much, why not do a Victor Kiam and buy the company? Shares in AIM-listed companies can be bought through Share plc's retail stockbroker thesharecentre. Some are even traded on PLUS, a stock exchange listed on, you got it, AIM.


After a hard day's shopping and exercise, its time to go home. I step into the house and remove my shoes to protect that new floor covering I picked up at United Carpets. Then I draw the (Colefax) curtains. To those of you who were wondering if there was a company on AIM selling beds, would I let you down? Airsprung plc sell mattresses and beds direct to through their website TheGoodBedCompany. As soon as my head hits the pillow (it's actually a Colefax cushion) I'm dreaming of tomorrow's company announcements.

why not do a Victor Kiam?


Written by David O'Hara

 Copyright © Aimzine Ltd 2011

David O'Hara is an experienced private investor and founder of Blackthorn Focus, a publication and events business dedicated to the financial markets.

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