Announcing the UK tech sector’s 33 Rising Stars semi-finalists

Esme Caulfield, December 7, 2018 4 min read

Almost three months after applications opened, we’re ready to announce the 33 startups through to the Rising Stars Semi-Final.

Rising Stars aims to find and showcase the most innovative, exciting tech startups across the UK. The competition offers early-stage companies the chance to raise their profile, connect with and learn from other founders, mentors, investors and influencers, and win a prize package designed to supercharge their business.

Applications for the competition were reviewed by a UK-wide judging panel, who shortlisted 33 of the best companies to go through to the Rising Stars Semi-Final on 16–17 January 2019 at Barclays Eagle Labs in Manchester. The semi-finalists will receive pitch training from a team of experts before presenting to our expert judging panel. Only 20 of these companies will make it through to the Grand Final at London’s Rich Mix on 5 March 2019.

Meet the national semi-finalists

Here’s who’ll be pitching at the event:


Rateaco Limited Technology (Data, Analytics & Cybersecurity, Birmingham) – An AI software product that reduces the time and cost it takes financial lenders to complete their financial due diligence.

Deep Branch BioTech (Healthtech & Biotech, Nottingham) – Transforming polluters into producers through carbon capture services that convert carbon dioxide into protein, sold as a sustainable animal feed alternative.

Tended (Hardware, Devices & IoT, Lincoln) – Offering intelligent personal safety wearables and monitoring systems that provide all-round safety solutions for individuals and businesses.

North East

Equiwatt Limited (Hardware, Devices & IoT, Newcastle) – An intelligent energy management platform that is harnessing community power to reward households for saving energy.

Hawkr (Hardware, Devices & IoT, Newcastle) – Image recognition technology using deep learning, and IoT digital signage and advertising technology for the remote management of advertising media screens.

Kani (Fintech, Newcastle) – A reporting and reconciliation tool for the financial space to accurately reconcile and report all monetary values moved and transferred.

North West

Foodomnia (Ecommerce & Marketplace, Manchester) – Building delivery-only food brands, using data-led decisions on site location and cuisine to create restaurant-quality food that delivers brilliantly, at takeaway prices.

Tickr Ltd (Fintech, Liverpool) – Investment products that allow customers to make money and have a positive impact at the same time, starting from just £5.

PPC Protect Limited (SaaS, Horwich) – Award-winning, automated software that stops click fraud immediately and protects future campaigns.

Northern Ireland

ProtectBox (Data, Analytics & Cybersecurity, Ballyclare) – Award-winning cybersecurity comparison website and marketplace that automates the buying of cybersecurity for small and medium businesses.

Unissu (Ecommerce & Marketplace, Belfast) – Enabling property companies, investors and advisers to make smarter capital allocations as they deal with the digital transformation of the property industry.

Da.Re Ltd (Hardware, Devices & IoT, Newry) – A Food Safe System for restaurants that makes compliance with food safety regulations, quicker, cheaper, more secure and easier to manage.


All 4 Games (Digital Entertainment, Edinburgh) – Offering publishing support to game developers anywhere in the world, marketing games and providing developers with expert feedback and assistance.

No Logo Media (Ecommerce & Marketplace, Edinburgh) – A proprietary influencer research marketplace that gathers real opinions from any group of interest, anywhere in the world and all within 24 hours.

GoRoadie (Ecommerce & Marketplace, Dundee) – Helping learner drivers find, compare and book driving instructors in their area.

South East

Gorilla in the Room (App & Software Development, Brighton) – Immersive technology that improves consumer research by immersing people in real-world situations to more accurately predict their purchase decisions.

Vitaccess (HealthTech & BioTech, Oxford) – A platform that produces real-time data on how diseases and treatments impact patients’ everyday lives, based on tailor-made apps installed on their smartphones.

Serelay Ltd (Tech for Good, Harwell) – Enabling mobile device users to capture verifiable photos and videos, and platforms receiving these to query them for authenticity of content, time and location.

South West

Verinym Ltd (Fintech, Bristol) – Creating simple, auditable, cost-effective trust with absolute minimum data, making customers custodians of their data and minimising your liability.

Metasonics (Hardware, Devices & IoT, Bristol) – Developing the next generation of customised, scalable acoustic metamaterials, changing the way we use and interact with sound.

People Matter Technology (SaaS, Ringwood) – A wellness platform that offers a safe online space where you can measure and improve your mental wellness at work.


Surple (App & Software Development, Newport) – Giving organisations visibility of their energy performance and the ability to identify waste effectively through an intuitive analytics platform.

Inspirze Ltd (App & Software Development, Wrexham) – A smart social enterprise platform of engagement that builds brand differentiation by incorporating a company’s people into the brand design and story.

miFuture Group Ltd (EdTech, Pontypridd) – Connecting young people to the world of work, by matching them to suitable earning, learning, training and volunteering positions where they can apply in a swipe.

Yorkshire & Humber

The Data City (Data, Analytics & Cybersecurity, Leeds) – Using data and AI to provide central and local government with the insight they need on organisations across the UK, in order to direct economic policy decisions.

Carbon Performance (Hardware, Devices & IoT, Leeds) – Adopting Industry 4.0 technologies to produce next-generation lightweight, organic, bionic, environmentally-sustainable components for the automotive and motorsport industry.

Vet-AI Ltd (Healthtech & Biotech, Leeds) – Combining the expertise of qualified vets and groundbreaking new technologies to deliver mobile, on-demand veterinary care, direct to pet parents.

East of England

Developing Experts (EdTech, Norwich) – Empowering teachers and parents to teach science with confidence through a library of over 700 interactive, online science lessons.

Thyngs (Fintech, Norwich) – A platform that makes anything interactive via smartphones, driving engagement, instant sales and loyalty, all without needing an app.

PlayerLands (Ecommerce & Marketplace, Royston) – Disrupting the world of video game micropayments by supplying a simple, elegant platform for developers to create and run shops in their games.


The Square (App & Software Development, London) – An award-winning network and automated hiring marketplace for specialist skilled industries, currently construction.

SeedLegals (Fintech, London) – Leveraging big data and human experts to solve the problem of expensive, time-consuming legals for startup funding rounds.

Heliocor (Tech for Good, London) – Regulatory technology designed to help companies cope with the ever-changing demands of regulation and restore trust in global transactions.


Find out more about Rising Stars here, or stay updated on the competition by signing up to our newsletter below, or following @TechNation on Twitter.

We’d like to thank our Rising Stars sponsors, Microsoft, BingBDO Drive and TLT LLP.

Rising Stars, Early Stage