How our 10 Northern Stars winners are doing six months on…

Northern Stars

Matt Jeffs-WattsMatt Jeffs-Watts, May 4, 2017

This article was originally posted on the Tech North website.

It’s hard to believe it’s been six months since the grand final of our Northern Stars competition. Our 10 companies have been on an incredible journey since winning in November having raised new funds, opened new offices, signed new contracts, and recruited key executives.

As part of the prize package we’ve taken the companies to exhibit at TechCrunch Disrupt in London, pitch to investors at an exclusive Bloomberg event, and attend a delegation to the SxSW conference in Texas. The next stage on their journey will be a stand at the prestigious The Next Web conference in Amsterdam in a couple of weeks.

Find out about each of the companies and why they’re the ‘ones to watch’ in these short videos

Here’s a brief round up of some of their achievements since winning in November…

Airtime Rewards – has seen Waitrose and Debenhams join its rewards programme. It has also won a place on Telefonica’s accelerator programme, Wayra, as well as taking the Northern Stars award at GP Bullhound’s Northern Tech Awards in March.

Ash.TV – has opened its second office in Amsterdam and is looking at offices in Paris and San Francisco. One of the world’s biggest food groups is now a client, spending 10% of its online video budget with Ash.TV

Dream Agility – won places at the Wayra accelerator in London and Lafayette Plug n Play in Paris for three months followed by three months in San Francisco. They will also open an office in Atlanta, as one of 22 startups taking part in a programme in the southern US city.

DueCourse – has hired two senior people from GE Capital and Funding Circle. It has become a strategic finance partner of accounting software company Xero and is the first finance approved app on the Xero Marketplace.

LivingLens – has closed a £1.3 million funding round and successfully launched in the US. It’s also won a contract from a high profile global insight firm

ProxiSmart – has secured additional locations for its product, is talking about strategic partnerships with some of the other winners and is working towards its next fundraising.

SwapBots – has seen its own toy roll off the production line for the first time and has been talking to major toy makers, as well as Apple. It’s also successfully raised money on Kickstarter.

Valuechain – has acquired two technology businesses to improve its offer to manufacturing clients Rolls Royce, GKN, BAE Systems, Force India, Toyota and Cosworth. The manufacturing software business has also secured major contracts with Airbus and Bentley.

Radio.co – has achieved 80% growth in five months, with new clients signing up every day. Awareness of the Radio.co brand in the local area has also increased.

Personalyze  – Northern Stars has been a great catalyst and the company has been chosen as one of the world’s top 10 data startups in the 2017 I-COM Global Data Startup Challenge. Personalyze now goes to Porto to compete to win a $50,000 prize from Unilever.

Here’s what Chris Reed, founder and CEO of Proxismart, has to say about the experience so far: “The Northern Stars win has taken us on a journey which would otherwise have not been possible. We have increased our profile significantly, met potential investors, secured additional locations ready to deploy our solution, garnered support from HM Government’s national tech advisor, presented at high profile international events, secured additional national awards, featured in regional and national press. Most importantly, we have been able to confirm the potential of our business with enthusiasm for it both domestically and abroad.”

We’re really proud of what they’ve all achieved and expect to hear even more progress updates off the back of The Next Web conference in Amsterdam.

Find out more about the companies and watch their business story videos here

Find out more about the Northern Stars programme