There’s no shortage of innovation in Europe, but East London’s Silicon Roundabout is without a doubt the epicenter of its technology startup scene. Home to Google UK and over 300 other startups, the area is also seeing a burgeoning fintech presence.
The U.K. in general is a hotbed for all things tech startup-oriented; from here, we’ve assembled what we believe to be the most exciting 13 tech start-ups out of the lot.
Want to cook something different, exotic, or outright crazy, but don’t have the time to find all the ingredients? Whisk is a free app that takes your recipe and transforms it into an easy-to-read shopping list. Launched in January 2013 by former The Apprentice finalist Nick Holzherr, Whisk is available in many countries in a variety of languages.
Originally based in the US, Zeven Media has taken Britain by storm with its new take on the ubiquitous photo booth. Brothers Joshua and Hyrum Cook started the company in March 2013, but have only recently become a hit in the U.K.
Zeven Media manufactures a next generation photo booth that puts the standard supermarket entrance or strip mall photo booth to shame. The company has been bombarded with order for parties and other public occasions; with features like contactless payment and instant social media sharing, it’s not hard to understand why.
A brilliantly simple product that’s sure to evoke a “why didn’t I think of that?” moment in anyone, goo.ey is a smartphone case that can adhere to glossy surfaces such as glass or plastic. Launched in January 2014 by Rachel Verghis, goo.ey has become the smartphone accessory to own.
Another wonderfully simple idea that has students everywhere rejoicing. Former Oxford Brookes University student and RefMe founder Tom Brooks decided that referencing books for research was a needlessly tedious task. So, in March 2014 he launched the RefMe app, enabling students to scan a book’s barcode to get its complete reference.
Following a trip with his father, Beer52 founder James Brown discovered a love for beer from all over the world. So, with only 7p in his bank account, he went about setting up a business that would allow individuals to purchase beers from thousands of micro-breweries across the globe. Brown and co-founder Fraser Doherty now have thousands of happy subscribers, all happily tasting beers that without Beer52, they would not have tasted. Cheers!
CarWow founders David Santoro, Alexandra Margolis, and James Hind launched the website in February 2014 to give buyers a way to both find the exact car they want to specification and to also compare it to second-hand listings. The offering is purportedly the only website of its kind.
Brynne Herbert launched MOVE Guides in July 2012 to make it easy for companies to move their employees for recruiting, relocations, projects, and expatriate assignments. Its web application features integrated payments and vendors, automated workflows and reporting, and more.
Founders Miguel Amaro, Mariano Kostelec, and Ben Grech noticed that the expansive student accommodation industry didn’t have a global centre point for purchasing and booking. Uniplaces was launched in June 2013 for both listing student accommodations as well as simplifying the process of finding student housing.
Background checks, as unpleasant as they may be, are crucial components of the hiring process. Despite this, Onfido founders Husayn Kassai, Ruhul Amin, and Eamon Jubbawy found no online tool capable of doing them quickly and efficiently. Onfido was born shortly thereafter and now offers companies a quick way to do background checks on any potential employee.
Smartphones are constantly evolving and being replaced: every time a new phone arrives, an old one gets thrown away. Based on this observation, Liam James and Matthew Green started a company in 2012 called The iOutlet buying old iPhones in bulk, refurbishing them, and selling them for profit but far below RRP on Ebay.
When you don’t have the time or patience to clean, it’s simply nice to have someone else to come over and do it. Launched in January 2013 by trio Jules Coleman, Alex Depledge, and Tom Nimmo, Hassle provides an online platform for booking cleaners. Available in almost all major UK cities, it’s proven to be a massive success since its launch.
Currency Cloud has simplified international payments and transactions for over $10 billion worth of transfers. Founded by Nigel Verdonn in 2012, the platform has proven to be a hit with individual investors and companies alike. Looks like Verdonn is floating on Cloud 9 with this one.
If you haven’t heard of/seen purplebricks.com on the radio or television, you must have been living off the grid for the last couple years. Brothers Michael and Kenny Bruce hit paydirt with their online estate agency. Simplifying property purchasing since its 2014, Purplebricks.com has sold an astronomical 2,000 properties—and that’s just in its first couple years of operation.
From refurbished iPhones to cleaners on-demand, these 13 U.K.-based firms prove that you don’t need to be a technological marvel to reach startup success. At the end of the day, the chief requirement is a drive to provide a valuable product or service to the consumer.