January 2017

We’re joining the Upscale programme from Tech City UK

We’re excited to announce that we’re joining Upscale in 2017. The Upscale programme from Tech City UK powers some of the fastest growing UK tech companies on their scaling journey.

As part of Upscale, early stage companies power their scaling journey, under the mentorship of some of the UK’s most successful tech entrepreneurs including Lastminute.com founders Martha Lane Fox and Brent Hoberman; successful investor and Lovefilm founder Saul Klein; Candy Crush creator Riccardo Zacconi and Lesley Eccles, founder of FanDuel.com.

Sector breakdown

The 2017 Upscale cohort represents a wide spread of sectors and reflects the UK’s strength in certain areas, for example in FinTech and eCommerce. The increasing importance of sectors like data analytics and marketplaces is also evident.

  • Internet of Things / Connected Devices: ElvieBulb

  • Hardware & Devices: Blaze

Gerard Grech, CEO of Tech City UK, said: “One of the objectives of Tech City UK is to accelerate the growth of the country’s digital and tech sector. The companies that join our Upscale programme have already overcome significant hurdles and have the makings of brilliant businesses. It’s also great to see so many regions and sectors represented in the cohort, demonstrating the great diversity this country has when it comes to digital technology, as highlighted by the Prime Minister in her recent industrial strategy announcement.”

“It’s particularly great to see four fantastic female founders - Tania Boler, Tamara Rajah, Tugce Bulut and Emily Brooke - amongst the new intake but the industry needs to work harder to make sure that women are getting to senior roles in the sector. There are many successful women in tech and we must promote these role models and inspire more girls to consider tech as a job where they can build an amazing, global career that can change people’s lives.”

In Numbers

  • Average number of employees is 31

  • Average funding raised: $4.1 million

  • Average revenues per year: just over $1 million

  • Average company age: 4 years old

  • Business to Business companies: 42%

  • Companies addressing both consumer/ business markets: 39%

  • Consumer facing companies: 18%

Regional representation

Almost a third of the companies selected come from outside London, showing that the UK’s tech sector is creating jobs and opportunity nationwide. The full contribution of the UK’s digital and tech sector to the UK economy will be revealed by Tech City UK in the coming weeks when it publishes its Tech Nation 2017 report, publishing the statistics and stories behind the rapidly expanding digital economy. Companies from outside London include Cambridge Intelligence (Cambridge), GeoSpock (Cambridge), Cronofy (Nottingham), LivingLens (Liverpool) and DueCourse (Manchester).

Eileen Burbidge, General Partner of Passion Capital and Chair of Tech City UK, said: “We welcome the next cohort to our Upscale programme. They can be confident that some of the most experienced, brightest minds in the tech ecosystem will be helping them to build their business over the coming year. We would like to thank all our partners and supporters who have helped to put together the programme and make it what it is by devoting time and effort to coaching and mentoring these young businesses.”

As part of the programme, the 33 Upscale companies will work with experienced and recognised Scale Coaches. This year, some of the graduates of Tech City UK’s first Upscale programme will return to mentor the new intake, demonstrating one of the strengths of the UK’s tech ecosystem where successful companies work hard to help the next generation.

Companies will take part in as many as 30 sessions and socials, that are designed around their specific needs. The challenges discussed will include maintaining team morale, managing the board, raising future funds and taking the company global.


  • Blaze - urban mobility brand providing technology for bike-sharing schemes and consumer cyclists globally

  • Boiler Room - online music broadcaster of live events. Six years old, it has now hosted shows in 100 cities worldwide

  • Bulb - an online renewable gas and electricity supplier, competing with the likes of British Gas and NPower

  • Cambridge Intelligence - an artificial intelligence company that helps companies see patterns and insights in their data

  • Chargifi - Chargifi supplies networked, wireless power to public venues like coffee shops, hotels, restaurants, sporting arenas, offices and transport hubs

  • CharlieHR - a free HR platform for small companies

  • Cronofy - a cloud computing company that allows people to check the availability of people in real time

  • Curve - allows you to combine all your credit cards into one Curve card and link with an app to monitor your spending

  • DueCourse - online invoice factoring business

  • Echo - an app that takes the pain out of repeat prescriptions

  • Elvie - a company that focuses on women’s wellness with wearable tech

  • everyLIFE Technologies - provides a  mobile platform for managing social care in real time, working with the NHS and social care providers

  • Firefly Learning - online tool for teachers, parents and schools to monitor pupils’ progress at school

  • GeoSpock - database technology that enables extreme-scale, real-time geospatial and multi-dimensional big data applications

  • Goodlord - end to end digital platform allowing letting agents, tenants and landlords to complete a rental transaction

  • Grabyo - Edit, publish and share video across mobile devices

  • Live Better With - community and marketplace for products for people living with cancer

  • LivingLens - allows companies to search hours of market research video by keyword

  • Mastered - online courses for fashion professionals

  • Mixcloud - audio streaming service that allows users to listen to radio from all over the world

  • Moneyfarm - online wealth manager whose investors include Allianz, one of the world’s largest insurers

  • Monzo - one of a new breed of challenger banks. The mobile banking app receives its banking licence this year

  • Paddle - provides e-commerce and digital infrastructure for software businesses

  • pi-top - provides DIY laptop and desktop products for STEM education

  • Pockit - banking startup aimed at those excluded from mainstream banking

  • Poq - app commerce solution for major retailers

  • Signal Media - Artificial Intelligence-powered new monitoring

  • StoryStream - Live storytelling for brands: content curation and publishing

  • Streetbees - market research insights from around the world, collected through artificial intelligence and geolocation

  • Trouva - curated online shopping from 150 independent boutiques

  • Trussle - the online mortgage adviser, built upon a database of thousands of mortgage products

  • Urban Massage - booking massage online

  • Wolf & Badger - global online marketplace for independent brands



  • Alexandra Depledge, Founder Hassle.com

  • Anne-Marie Huby, Co-Founder Just Giving

  • Brent Hoberman, Co-Founder Lastminute.com

  • David Buttress, Founder Just Eat

  • Greg Marsh, Co-Founder One Fine Stay

  • Jess Butcher, Co-Founder Blippar

  • Joel Gasgione, Founder Buffer

  • Lesley Eccles, Co-Founder FanDuel

  • Martha Lane Fox, Co-Founder Lastminute.com

  • Michael Acton Smith, Founder Mind Candy

  • Patrick Campbell, Founder Price Intelligently

  • Riccardo Zarcconi, Founder King

  • Saul Klein, Co-Founder Lovefilm

  • Toby Moore, Founder CTO Space Ape Games

  • Wendy Tan White, Founder Moon Fruit


  • Amir Kfir, Board Member, Million Peacemakers

  • Anthony Fletcher, CEO Graze

  • Joe Zawadzki, CEO MediaMath

  • Lenn Kurztman, CFO Threat Quotient

  • Matt Buckland, Head of Talent Lyst

  • Shane Corstrorphine, GM Skyscanner


  • Dan Hynes, Partner Atomico

  • Simon Calver, Chairman Moo

  • Siraj Khaliq, Partner Atomico

  • Suranga Chandratillake, Balderton Capital

  • Tom Hulme, Partner Google Ventures

  • Tracy Doree, Partner Kindred Capital

Learn more about GeoSpock…

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