The stocks adding Spice to your portfolio – the best performers since the Spice Girls formed

Laura Suter
6 November 2018

•        Seven companies have returned 2,000% or more in the 22 years between the Spice Girls first single and the announcement of their reunion tour yesterday
•        Which are the Scary, Sporty, Posh, Baby and Ginger stocks?
•        £20,000 invested in the top performers would be almost £410,000 today



Total return since 8th July 1996 (%)







Ashtead Group






CLS Holdings








Croda International


UDG Healthcare


Barr (AG)


Fisher (James) & Sons


St James's Place


TR Property Investment Trust


Worldwide Healthcare Trust




HgCapital Trust


Sage Group


Source: AJ Bell / Sharepad

Laura Suter, personal finance analyst at investment platform AJ Bell, comments:

“Stock markets have been on more of a rollercoaster than the world’s favourite girl band over the past 22 years with more break-ups, departures and a few heartbroken fans. Since the Spice Girls released their first single, Wannabe, in the UK in July 1996, a total of seven companies in the FTSE 350 have delivered a total return of 2,000% or more.

“A £20,000 investment split evenly between the top 20 performing stocks would have been turned into £409,600 today – enough to afford more than 5,000 tickets to their upcoming reunion tour. 

“Meat producer Cranswick wins the Sporty mantle, outperforming all others in the FTSE 350 since 1996 and bringing home the bacon with a 3,580% total return over the period. Its share price has risen from 90.6p in July 1996 to 2,855.97p today.

“Worldwide Healthcare Trust is the Baby of the top performers, as it was only formed in April 1995 – a year before the Spice Girls released their first UK single. The investment trust buys stakes in biotechnology and healthcare companies, and has handed investors a 1,550% return since 1996.

“At the opposite end of the scale is James Fisher & Sons, which has been around since 1847. The Ginger stock – after the oldest of the girl group – has handed investors a 1,610% total return since 1996, with its share price rising from 121.5p to £18.20.

“Clarkson has given investors a Scary ride, with a profit warning in July 2016 and another earlier this year. Despite this, the shipping services provider has the second highest performance over the past 22 years, handing shareholders exactly 3,000% total return.

“Support services group DCC was the Posh stock in 1996, with the most expensive share price on 8th July 1996, when Wannabe hit our radios – costing investors 328p per share. The company still has the most expensive share price, at £66 today.”

Laura Suter
Personal Finance Analyst
Laura Suter is personal finance analyst at AJ Bell. She is a multi-award winning former financial journalist, having specialised in investments. Laura joined AJ Bell from the Daily Telegraph, where she was investment editor. She has previously worked for adviser publications Money Marketing and Money Management, and has worked for an investment publication in New York. She has a degree in Journalism Studies from University of Sheffield.
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