Posted on February 14, 2020 by staff

Tech Nation announces 10 winners of scale-up competition


Ten early-stage scale-ups have been announced as the winners of a competition set out by UK tech entrepreneur network Tech Nation.

The Rising Stars competition is designed to showcase scale-ups at the Seed to pre-Series A funding round stage.

The final ten winners were revealed at the Rising Stars Grand Final in London, after 33 regional winners were revealed in November and a semi-final in Manchester last month.

The judging panel included techUK President Jacqueline de Rojas, PrettyLittleThing co-founder Adam Kamani, and MD of Microsoft for Startups UK, Amali de Alwis.

Now in its second year, the competition received almost 400 applications in total, of which 30% have at least one female founder.

Tech Nation reports that 90% of companies entering the final, which required Seed to pre-Series A funding or annual revenues up to £1.5m, were from outside of London.

The competition’s prize package includes access networks and platforms, one-to-one support, introductions to potential partners and investors and support from the programme partners, BDO Drive, Microsoft Advertising, Soldo, Talent Works International and TLT LLP. – Birmingham is a community driven global marketplace for online and offline voucher codes, covering thousands of e-commerce sites. It automatically applies the best value voucher code at checkout in one click for both mobile and desktop devices. – Cambridge is addressing security and device management for IoT and Edge devices. FoundriesFactory is a self-service cloud solution that provides turnkey services to develop, secure, deploy and maintain embedded IoT and Edge compute products. They enable secure IoT devices and provide lifetime software maintenance at a fraction of current costs.


We Build Bots – Cardiff

We Build Bots delivers AI powered automation to the public sector, helping organisations deliver better, faster and cheaper citizen services. Leveraging bots, voice and conversational analytics, they help the public sector make better use of the data they collect, making it more predictive and more productive.


Neatebox – Edinburgh

Tackling personal loneliness and communication, the Neatebox “Welcome” platform removes barriers and promotes empathetic relationships between consumers and customer service teams, promoting real societal change and heralding a new age of understanding and communication.


Talking Medicines – Glasgow

Talking Medicines captures the digital voice of the patient, aggregating it into patterns of behaviours and commercialising it to brand managers in pharmaceutical companies through subscription access. They put patient centricity at the core of what they do, aiming to improve outcomes of medicines.

CoGrammar – London

CoGrammar operates the largest coding education provider in Africa – HyperionDev. Through this, they source, select, train, and integrate full-time code reviewers from top African tech talent. This allows Western companies to affordably assess developers and technical team quality, whilst creating hundreds of jobs in African countries.


ClearGlass – London

ClearGlass is a digital intermediary between asset managers and pension funds. It collects underlying costs and performance data from asset managers and helps pension funds decide which is the best fund to invest in for their members.


tootoot – Manchester

tootoot is award-winning software that supports the psychological safety and wellbeing of individuals within education, sport and the workplace. tootoot provides a way for individuals to raise a concern to their organisation with complete confidentiality.


Sparkbox – Southampton

Working in the retail and fashion space, Sparkbox uses machine learning to reduce stock, improve profitability, and prevent over-discounting by optimising prices. Their AI helps retail teams leverage their data, understand the impact of pricing decisions and make the most of the inventory they own.


Codices Interactive – Truro

Codices Interactive provides viewers with a live interactive video platform, enabling any broadcaster to create interactive shows. Its first product is now the most used gameshow creation tool on the Twitch platform, with 1,000+ monthly active broadcasters and 300,000 unique monthly viewers.


Previous Rising Stars winners include Tickr from Liverpool who went on to raise £1m through the Seedrs platform, SeedLegals who went on to raise Series A funding of over £3m led by SeedCamp and Kima Ventures, and Tended who raised £1.4m from Blackfinch Ventures and Minerva Angel Business Network.

Digital Minister Matt Warman said: “It’s great to see such a diverse group of entrepreneurs from all over the UK involved in this competition and I’m excited to find out what’s next for these world-leading tech firms of tomorrow.”

“This government is committed to making sure the UK is the best place in the world to start and grow a digital business. We’ve worked hard to develop a business friendly environment, a reputation for innovation and the ability to attract the best talent from across the globe.”