The UK has some pretty impressive start-ups to show off to the world and with government backing through projects like the Tech City initiative, as well as financial incentives and tax breaks for start-ups and their investors, it’s no wonder innovation is really taking off in the UK tech and digital sector.
However, much to V3’s frustration, the names of the same old UK start-ups continue to be used to showcase such innovation.
The success of the likes of Huddle, Moo, Mind Candy and Wonga is, of course, to be celebrated but these start-ups are not new to the scene. In fact, when these names are used by the media time and time again, anyone looking at the UK would think we’ve had little to celebrate for years.
It’s for this reason that V3 has compiled a list of up and coming UK start-ups. All of the firms on this list have been launched after 2010.
Augmented reality technology looks set to be one of the next big things in the technology landscape, as seen by Google's project Glass, and one firm well placed to capitalise on this is Blippar.
Founded in 2011 and based in London, the firm enables brands to make their product interactive when viewed through smartphone or tablets cameras via the Blippar app. This enables images to come to life with moving character, images and offers.
Blippar secured an undisclosed amount of seed funding in January last year from Qualcomm Ventures, and planned to follow this with a series A funding round. The firm told V3 this round of funding was not needed as Blippar's revenue grew healthily enough to support its organic growth. However after speaking to the firm, V3 expects the funding round could very possibly occur this year. Currently the UK team is at 30 staff, but projected to grow to 50 by the end of 2013.
The Blippar service has proven popular with some households names, with firms ranging from Kit Kat, to Dominos and even Justin Bieber using the technology.
Searching the web is a big business - just look at Google. But, as in many areas of technology, there's often a space for more bespoke, niche players to ply their trade and Adzuna does exactly that by focusing on search for the job, car and property markets.
The site brings together searches from numerous sites to save users time and effort, and overlays this data with other information from sites like LinkedIn, so you can see if you know anyone who is connected to your company of interest when performing a job search.
Adzuna was launched in July 2011 by former employees of local advert site Gumtree and social review site Qype, Andrew Hunter (pictured left) and Doug Monro. Now Monro heads up the London Adzuna team of 12 staff, while Hunter leads a team of five developers out in Greece (apparently it's much easier to find developers there).
Monro has spoken to V3 about plans to expand his Clapham team with 10 additional members of staff by the end of this year. These staff members will be country managers who will launch the Adzuna service in a number of European countries, following the recent launch of the service in Germany.
Adzuna received £300,000 worth of seed funding from Passion Capital and a number of angel investors immediately after its launch, and then further investment of £500,000 from Index Ventures in January last year. The website receives around two million visitors every month.
Rosalie Marshall is the special projects editor and chief reporter at V3. Previously she was a reporter for IT Week and channel editor for online television site LocalGov.tv. Rosalie covers government IT, business applications, IT skills, open source technology and social networks.