Meet the Rising Stars regional winners: the East of England’s five top early-stage companies

Kane Fulton, December 11, 2020 5 min read

Rising Stars is the UK’s only national competition for innovative, early-stage tech companies. Last year, 10 companies were crowned Rising Stars 2.0 Winners at our London Grand Final. Now, five regional winners for each region and nation across the UK will compete nationally for the chance to be named as one of the 10 winners of Rising Stars 3.0. Read on to find out more about our five East of England regional winners – e-Surgery, Plastometrex, Rnwl, Tricerion, and Upside Money.

e-Surgery

e-Surgery is the UK’s leading prescribing service and sustainable online pharmacy. Patients simply need to go to their website, choose the treatment they need, fill in a simple health questionnaire and wait for next day delivery in discreet recyclable and biodegradable packaging. They’re a private healthcare provider radically proving the idea that private healthcare can be affordable and that these efficiencies can be made available for the masses. CEO Thuria Wenbar spoke to Tech Nation.

How does it feel to be a Rising Stars regional winner?

We are thrilled to be selected as a Tech Nation Rising Star and humbled to be chosen with other innovative and inventive tech-businesses. This year has unquestionably proven the necessity of forward-thinking, patient-focused, tech-driven healthcare. Being at the forefront of digital health has been both an honour and a challenge. We have our fantastic team to thank for making this possible. We are excited for 2021 and keen to make massive waves in the area of online pharmacy. We are proud to represent our region as a leader in future-focused, sustainable, and intelligent technology.

What is it like being a tech company based in the East of England?

We have been very fortunate to start up in Norwich. The community here, the people, and other entrepreneurs in the East of England region all share this amazing, “pay it forward” attitude. We are very grateful to everyone who has supported us along the way.

Plastometrex

Plastometrex develops next-generation mechanical materials testing tools and software platforms to support the digital manufacturing revolution. Plastometrex’s first product – the Indentation Plastometer – enables manufacturers to extract stress/strain curves from metal parts with unprecedented ease, reducing testing turnaround times from hours (or days) to real-time measurement. CEO James Dean spoke to Tech Nation.

How does it feel to be a Rising Stars regional winner?

Rising Stars is a fantastic competition for early-stage companies like Plastometrex. Getting through the regional heats is a great achievement, and a significant endorsement of the work that we are doing to transform the mechanical testing industry. Following hot on the heels of our recent seed investment round, we’re now looking forward to using this tremendous platform to promote our activities and drive further interest in our products.

What is it like being a tech company based in the East of England?

Plastometrex is based in the heart of the Cambridge science and technology ecosystem, surrounded by some of the world’s most innovative companies and with access to some of the world’s brightest minds from the University of Cambridge. There’s also ready access to business support networks, and a thriving angel and venture capital community.

Rnwl

Handling your insurance renewal, Rnwl uses AI to auto-switch customers at renewal, automatically searching for the best deals across price comparison websites, direct-only insurers and even the latest, most innovative insurtechs. Rnwl also allows its customers to easily and seamlessly submit claims and make changes to policies (such as adding items to contents insurance or adding or removing drivers from the car insurance). Founder and CEO Goncalo de Vasconcelos spoke to Tech Nation.

How does it feel to be a Rising Stars regional winner?

Tech Nation’s Rising Stars programme is legendary amongst entrepreneurs. It’s inspiring and a huge honour to be one of the selected few to be recognised with such accolade.

What is it like being a tech company based in the East of England?

The plethora of opportunities for entrepreneurial minds in Cambridge is truly astonishing. There is innovation going on everywhere you look. To be part of such an ecosystem is energising: it makes you want to keep on innovating even further.

Tricerion

Tricerion provides frictionless secure customer authentication via neurographic passwords. The software enables simple, easy visual authentication for low cost access to web applications – especially helpful for the digitally reluctant (the elderly), the young and those that suffer digital inequalities. It’s patent protected, has been deployed successfully and has been proven to stop spoof phishing. CEO Schehrezade Davidson spoke to Tech Nation.

How does it feel to be a Rising Stars regional winner?

We are honoured to have been chosen as a Rising Stars East of England Winner. This will highlight our simple, easy, visual authentication solution, via Neurographic passwords, to potential customers and investors. Exciting times!

Upside Money

With the aim to make savings effortless, Upside Money are helping a nation of spenders to start saving. They do this by finding money on everyday spending, and automatically moving it to their Upside Savings account. Their first service, ‘autocashback’, earns cashback automatically when you shop. No coupons, cookie tracking, browser extensions or receipt scanning is required – just watch your savings account fill up. CEO Andries Smit spoke to Tech Nation.

How does it feel to be a Rising Stars regional winner?

We’re humbled to be a Rising Star Winner for East Anglia. It is a great testimony to the Upside team’s results in helping consumers get frictionless cashback. We are looking forward to helping even more customers get more in 2021.

What is it like being a tech company based in the East of England?

Upside had wonderful support from across East Anglia. Organisations like TechEast, InvestEast, Anglia Capital Group, University of Essex and the East Anglia TechNation team have all been amazing in connecting us with investors and opportunities, and supporting us throughout.

East of England