As we dive head first into 2017, the startup scene is yet again bursting at the seams with brilliant ideas. Of all the possible projects, each with huge potential, we chose those which most grabbed our attention. Just like last year, we focused on those European startups which often don't receive the attention they deserve.
Glue is a startup which is riding the IoT and Smart Home Technology wave. Its product turns any smartphone into a key, for example to your home or office. The advantage Glue offers is the ability to remotely lock or unlock anything - even from the other side of the world. Besides the practical uses, we can think of a few mischievous ways to use this technology...
The potential in this project is demonstrated by an investment of more than 3 million dollars from experienced campaigners Peter Carlsson and Kaj Hed.
Kristoffer Lawson, Javier Reyes and Pekka Nikander are taking on the likes of Microsoft, Apple and Google with their wooden pocket computer. Their USP isn't just the design and material but also their emphasis on collaboration and offline work.
Solu received an initial investment of more than 1.3 million dollars and further funding towards the development of their product from Kickstarter. You can now pre-order the 10cm x 10cm computer on the site Indiegogo.
Property Partner basically allows anyone to invest in the property market. It is a crowdfunding platform, through which users can buy part of a rental property (the lowest possible investment is around 55EUR) and then collect their share of the rent when it comes in.
Although the company was only founded in 2014, it's already managed to obtain 32 million dollars' worth of investment and its users have bought properties totaling more than 24 million pounds.
Six Guys Lab is a Pilsen based company which, under the name ActiJoy, has launched a range of pet products which monitors the activity (or inactivity) of cats and dogs.
The company even came up with a bowl which measures the amount of water drunk and food consumed. Six Guys Labs also deserve praise for fighting their way to this year's CES 2017 in Las Vegas.
Codacy is an automated tool for revision of code, saving developers time and giving them peace of mind. Not to mention sparing all those keyboards and mice flung against the wall in anger...
This Portuguese startup claims that it can save developers 20-50% of the time they would normally spending checking their written code and is currently used by thousands of developers worldwide.
Kreditch uses Big Data to assess the credit rating of individuals and companies who do not have a long credit history. Banks are therefore unsure of the risks of lending to them and understandably often won't lend them anything.
Kreditech can work out the likelihood of the loan being repaid using non-traditional, alternative forms of data such as bank account transactions.
Impraise is a company of 24 people, whose goal is to enable extensive feedback between employees and managers - all in real time. The aim is to improve both productivity and employee satisfaction through increased communication.
Last year Impraise raised 1.6 million dollars towards this ambitious project.
Babylon combines AI and an innovative approach to healthcare, essentially by creating a kind of 'pocket doctor'. For less than 5 GBP a month, you can check the application for your symptoms and, if necessary, link up with a 'live' doctor.
The application also works as a general health admin tool. You can carry out basic laboratory tests, provide prescriptions and book an appointment at the surgery.
French startup Agricool raised a very respectable 4 million euros for its unusual product. The company is planning to grow strawberries (and later other crops) in shipping containers in the city.
Agricool is trying to fight back against imported fruit and vegetables which are crammed with pesticides and devoid of taste and smell. They plan to create a local alternative that is available out of season.
The goal of the company BUX is allow everyone to trade easily and quickly on the stock market. The application, which was launched in 2014, even allows potential investors to play with virtual money before moving onto live transactions.
There are, of course, in-built alert to sudden drops in share prices. The app currently has a round 500,000 users and is available in the Netherlands, Germany, Austria and the United Kingdom (with further expansion planned).
The founders of Unbabel, Vasco Pedro and João Graça, had the idea of creating a translation startup whilst on a surfing weekend.
The result is Unbabel, a company which combines machine learning and crowdfunding to generate online translations. As a indicator of this startup's potential, Unbabal become the first Portuguese startup to get on the prestigious Y Combinator accelerator scheme.
Swiss startup ecoRobotix received 2.8 million euros from 4FO Ventures, Investiere.ch, Business Angels Switzerland and several other investors to develop their solar powered weeding robot.
The robot uses numerous sensors, a camera and GPS to distinguish between weeds and normal crops therefore reducing the amount of pesticides used which saves farmers money.
Nice guys come last
If we're allowed to be a little cheeky, we'd like to give ourselves a mention. We at Techloop.io are turning the IT job search on its heard. 2016 was a great success for us and we now turn our attention to 2017.
This year will mark the launch of our new system, with an improved UI
and much more functionality. We also have some aces up our sleeve for later in the year too, but more on that in due course ;).
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