9 min read
What is Upscale?
Upscale helps the UK’s most promising tech companies to accelerate their growth and unlock the key to scaling successfully.
Based on the values of honesty, intimacy and trust, this established, curated programme is designed to reflect companies’ scaling journeys, exploring fundamental growth challenges, such as hiring, maintaining company culture and international expansion.
Companies on the Upscale programme will benefit from open conversations, peer-to-peer learning opportunities, meetups and workshops, delivered by expert scale coaches and seasoned entrepreneurs who have been through it all. It’s free to join, and we don’t take an equity stake in your business either.
Take a look at our current cohort…
London | Ecommerce & Marketplace | @Airsorted
Airsorted helps people host their homes on Airbnb and other platforms. Aimed at either landlords or travellers, the company provides a hassle-free service, including property listing, cleaning, linens, communication with guests, check-in, key exchange and more.
London | SaaS | @ApperioLtd
Apperio exists to make the world's legal clear, connected and collaborative. Providing a single, real-time view of every firm, matter, task and billable hour involved through an intuitive platform, Apperio ensures general counsels and lawyers can access the information and insights they need.
London | Hardware & Devices & IoT | @automata_tech
Automata's mission is to empower people to automate the physical work they should no longer have to do. Its first product, Eva, is a simple, affordable, desktop robot arm built for professionals, helping to improve productivity on a production line or in a lab.
- BookingLive Software
Bristol | Enterprise Software & Cloud Computing | @BookingLive
BookingLive provides powerful scheduling, reservation and purchasing experiences that create profitable customer relationships. Its leading secure data-driven platform is trusted by government departments, retailers, NHS trusts and large multinational organisations to manage their most important customer engagement journeys.
- Cleo AI
London | Fintech | @meet_cleo
Cleo exists to radically improve everyone's relationship with money. For millions, money has been too difficult for too long. Cleo was built to change that. A personal champion and companion, Cleo helps people achieve their goals and feel genuinely good about money, while sharing or creating products and services that really work for them.
London | Healthtech & Biotech | @doctifyuk
Doctify allows patients to search, compare and book the best doctors near them. Its online booking tools, complete with patient reviews, enable users to make an informed decision about health professionals, and book an appointment, treatment or scan, from any device, 24 hours a day.
- Fertility Focus
Coventry | Healthtech & Biotech | @OvuSense
OvuSense, from Fertility Focus, predicts ovulation 24 hours in advance, doubling the chance of pregnancy for each reproductive cycle. Comprised of a vaginal sensor, which measures core temperature, and a smartphone app for data upload, OvuSense can be used by all women, including those with ovulatory issues.
London | Fintech | @Fluidly
Fluidly addresses the biggest SME pain point, cashflow management. Its intelligent system, featuring automated cashflow forecasting and management, connects to accounting packages and bank accounts to optimise cashflow. Saving SMEs both time and money, it also ensures they have control, certainty and confidence about their financial future.
Brighton | SaaS | @FUTRLI
FUTRLI solves the pain points of SMEs and the accountants that advise them, helping businesses get it right when it comes to their futures. Business owners can produce flexible, three-way forecasts built from P&Ls, balance sheets and cash flow statements, and prepare live business plans, budgets and reports, helping them get more visibility.
Cambridge | Healthtech & Biotech | @ourhealthera
Healthera connects patients to a network of hundreds of pharmacies and NHS GPs. Using the Healthera app, which is listed on the NHS Digital apps library, patients can order and track their prescriptions, access clinical services, and monitor their medication intake in one digital end-to-end solution.
London | Ecommerce & Marketplace | @Hubble
Hubble is London's biggest online marketplace for renting flexible office space. Its platform enables large, flexible office brands, small independent brands and those with spare space to let their offices. Making it easy for businesses between 1 and 250 people to find and move into an office space, Hubble cuts the average move time from three months to three weeks.
- Immersive Labs
Bristol | Data Analytics & Cyber security | @immersivelabsuk
Immersive Labs is enabling organisations to upskill and assess current cyber workforces, as well as identify and develop the talent they never knew existed. The company’s virtual hands-on learning platform features hundreds of browser-based labs and real-world security scenarios that allow organisations to upskill from within and be the best they can be.
- Koru Kids
London | Edtech | @korukids
Koru Kids is building a new childcare system from scratch using modern technology. Now the UK's biggest childcare brand, Koru Kids trains and deploys 100+ nannies each week, transforming the lives of thousands of families. The team builds seamless, comprehensive software and delivers high quality ongoing training and development for nannies.
Edinburgh | Fintech | @_lendingcrowd
LendingCrowd specialises in lending to SMEs across Britain by accessing finance from private investors to provide loans of up to £500,000. Borrowers can check their eligibility in just 60 seconds, and it takes less than 30 minutes to complete a loan application. Once the loan has been funded, the funds could be in the borrower’s account within two working days.
Bath | Ecommerce & Marketplace | @MoveGB
MoveGB is on a mission to enable lifelong health and happiness for all. The UK's largest activity marketplace with 300,000 users and over 6,000 physical activity providers, MoveGB offers one membership to tens of thousands of activities, classes, gyms and studios, and gives members the daily freedom to mix up their activities.
London | Tech For Good | @OLIO_ex
OLIO is a free neighbour-to-neighbour food sharing app. Users simply snap a picture of their surplus food items and add them to OLIO, then neighbours receive customised alerts and can make requests. OLIO’s Food Waste Heroes programme also matches volunteers with their local retailer to collect unsold food and redistribute it to the local community via the app.
- Open Cosmos
Oxford | Data Analytics & Cyber security | @Open_Cosmos
Open Cosmos provides simple and affordable space missions to help solve the world’s biggest challenges, enabling organisations from across a wide range of industries to use space technologies as a tool. Offering constellation, in-orbit demonstration, payload development and qualification services, Open Cosmos offers a one-stop-shop to orbit.
London | Ecommerce & Marketplace | @OpenRent
A rental community for landlords and tenants, OpenRent has thoroughly disrupted the market to become the country’s largest letting agent and make renting fairer, safer and cheaper for everyone. Landlords can advertise their properties on major property portals for just £29, saving them thousands, while tenants are never charged admin or agency fees.
Oxford | Healthtech & Biotech | @Oxehealth
Oxehealth's Digital Care Assistant (DCA) gives staff caring for the elderly and vulnerable more time for hands on care where and when they are needed most. The DCA acts as an assistant, paying attention to every room when staff can’t be there, helping care facilities improve patient or resident outcomes and experiences, and reduce the cost of care.
London | Ecommerce & Marketplace | @patch_plants
In the seemingly endless drive towards urbanisation, there is no brand that speaks to urban gardens or urban gardeners. That's where Patch comes in. The company allows customers to discover the right plants for their space, delivers them to their door, and helps them look after them through its in-house plant doctors and great content.
London | Fintech | @_Previse_
Previse is transforming B2B commerce so that suppliers are paid instantly upon invoice. The company’s AI technology analyses companies’ data to predict the invoices unlikely to get paid, so Previse can pay the rest instantly. The 1% fee paid by suppliers who opt for instant payment is shared between the buyer, the funder and Previse, in a genuine win-win.
London | Data Analytics & Cyber security | @AskShepper
Today, businesses use Google to find anything digitally and view pictures online. Shepper is the other side of the coin. Businesses use Shepper’s B2B inspection services to send a real person, from a managed network of local, trusted people, to a physical location to carry out checks and collect information, helping to drive down costs and speed up delivery.
London | Tech For Good | @Sweatcoin
Sweatcoin is a digital currency backed by the economic value of physical movement. Created with the mission to motivate people to be more physically active and fight the UK’s obesity problem, Sweatcoin’s tracker app converts steps into a virtual currency and includes an internal marketplace that lets users buy goods and services with their Sweatcoins.
London | SaaS | @Tessian
Tessian creates machine intelligence to secure enterprises from threats executed by humans, keeping the world’s sensitive data and systems secure. Used by large enterprises across the financial, legal and technology sectors, its email security platform automatically prevents security threats like misaddressed emails, data loss and non-compliance.
- The Accountancy Cloud
London | Fintech | @theacloud
Designed with startup founders in mind, The Accountancy Cloud platform automates accounting, finance and cashflow tasks, eliminating back office admin. Using data to produce interactive financial statements, and integrating with accounting software, it acts as a hub for accounting operations where founders can access real-time advice from finance experts.
- The Plum Guide
London | Ecommerce & Marketplace | @plumguide
The Plum Guide is on a mission to build a marketplace of the world’s best holiday homes. Solving the issue of quality control in the homestay market, it separates the good from the great using the Plum Test, which leverages an innovative combination of tech, data and expert human curation to determine if a home has what it takes to deliver a perfect stay.
Birmingham | Enterprise Software & Cloud Computing | @voxpopme
Voxpopme is the world’s number one video insight platform. Its unique technology platform enables fast and easy end-to-end video research through solutions that revolutionise the process of capturing, analysing and sharing video feedback. As a result, every data point businesses rely on to make decisions can be backed up by real human stories.
London | SaaS | @WazokuHq
Wazoku helps companies become everyday innovators, where innovation is a core, strategic capability. Passionate about enabling organisations to engage and collaborate with their workforce, ecosystem, customers and the world, Wazoku’s cloud-based idea management software enables users to crowdsource solutions to challenges that keep them up at night.
London | Tech For Good | @wefarm
WeFarm has built the world’s biggest farmer-to-farmer trusted knowledge network for the 1 billion small-scale farmers globally who have no access to the internet. Farmers can ask any question on agriculture, in any local language, for free and WeFarm gets them bespoke content back, using sophisticated machine learning and the knowledge of the crowd.
What does Upscale involve?
Companies selected to join Upscale will get:
- 12 in-depth workshops tackling fundamental growth barriers: Dedicated workshops for founders and the c-suite will explore the biggest scaling challenges, from culture, talent, product and leadership, to international expansion, finance and fundraising.
- Access to leading scale coaches: Sessions will be delivered by our scale coaches, seasoned entrepreneurs and experts who have been through it all.
- Peer-to-peer learning with other scaling companies: The opportunity to network with and learn from other leading UK tech scaleups, founders and leadership teams, as well as scale coaches.
- Exposure to our alumni network: The chance to join our network of over 100 successful UK tech companies, including Monzo, Bloom & Wild and Bulb, who have collectively raised over $1.4bn since joining the programme.
- Marketing and PR support: Positioning as a successful, fast-growth UK tech company, through marketing and press via Tech Nation.
Upscale in numbers
How does the programme work?
Upscale is six-month growth programme designed exclusively for the UK’s leading and most ambitious tech scaleups.
Companies from all sectors are welcome to apply for the programme, and we choose around 30 to join us each year.
Please note that the latest round of applications closed on 14 November 2018, but applications will open again later in 2019.
The Upscale judges…
Upscale is made possible with the support of our programme partners, who act as advisors to some of the best known fast-growth companies in the world. They help to support companies on their scaling journeys through strategic advice, information and workshops.
Upscale, the book
What it takes to scale a startup. By the people who’ve done it.
Hear from some of the UK’s leading technology entrepreneurs and investors who between them have built or backed companies worth billions, in Upscale the book. Available to order now.