Every startup wants to become the next big thing, but only a few companies successfully make the most impact in people’s lives, become the next unicorn, or attract investor attention. Most will not achieve their long-term goals of becoming a force to reckon with in their niche, but a few will certainly blossom into industry leaders.
There are a few early clues that a startup will be successful, according to market researcher Quid: Have the company’s founders worked together before? Is the business in a hot sector, one where many other new startups are also focusing? Has it raised funding at a quick pace?
Many startups will eventually fail but it’s a good thing that entrepreneurs keep trying to build businesses to improve lives, make business processes better, change how we work or even change our way of life. The companies listed here all have great ideas, experienced leadership, and some have received significant investments for their futures.
1. Coinbase: A secure online platform for buying, selling, transferring, and storing digital currency. Coinbase has brought mainstream legitimacy to cryptocurrency exchanges and given wide-eyed investors a safe harbor for exploring the emerging industry.
2. Essential Phone: An entirely new type of phone. The Essential is all about keeping only the essential aspects of a smartphone. This means almost-stock Android, no pre-install bloatware, and quality materials such as titanium and ceramic.
3. CastBox wants to become the “YouTube of audio.” The company makes a podcast player that also helps users discover new podcasts.
4. Stripe Atlas: Starting a company can be needlessly complicated—lengthy paperwork, bank visits, legal complexity, numerous fees, and non-obvious decisions about what services to use. The team at Stripe built this to make the process simpler for you.
5. Station: This app is the first smart workstation for busy people.
A single place for all of your work applications. It combines all the services you need into a single window and handles notifications and documents better than a normal browser.
6. Headspace: Train your mind for a healthier, happier life. Headspace is an approachable and effective introduction to mindfulness and meditation.
7. Habito: A UK startup in the growing proptech scene, Habito wants to make it easier to apply for a mortgage. It’s a robo-adviser for regulated mortgage advice. The app helps home buyers find a loan by asking a series of questions and scanning the market for great options.
8. Fin: Fin uses a combination of human and machine intelligence to provide high quality, on-demand assistance so you can focus on what is most important to you.
9. Nauto: With bi-directional cameras, a powerful AI engine, and a suite of coaching tools, Nauto is much more than modern-day dashcams for your fleet. It helps to identify dangers to drivers, provides feedback at the end of trips, and also analyzes the cause of accidents to reduce false liability claims.
10. Flutterwave: Founded by a team of ex-bankers, entrepreneurs, and engineers, Flutterwave provides the underlying technology platform that allows businesses to make and accept payments anywhere in Africa.
11. Coda: For years, your team has been split across spreadsheets, docs, and apps. Coda wants to change that. Coda creates online documents and the utility of applications into a single new canvas.
12. Ripple: Ripple is a network that uses blockchain, the technology behind Bitcoin, to allow banks and payments processors to securely send money directly to one another globally.
13. Atrium LTS: A software company that wants to help automate legal workflows. A team of experienced entrepreneurs and startup lawyers working together to build the technology-first law firm of the future.
14. Monzo: Monzo Bank is a digital, mobile-only bank based in the UK. Originally operating through a mobile app and a prepaid debit card, in April 2017 their UK banking license restrictions were lifted, enabling them to offer a current account.
15. Clarity Money uses data science and machine learning to analyze your personal finances and help you make smarter decisions with your money. It helps you take control of your finances by cancelling wasteful accounts, lowering your bills, getting you better deals and managing your financial life.
16. Accompany: People and company intelligence for executives. The mobile and web app wants to be your virtual chief of staff, providing you with all the information you need for anyone you are meeting on a given day.
17. Neuralink: Elon Musk’s newest company, merging our brain with AI. “Over time I think we will probably see a closer merger of biological intelligence and digital intelligence,” Musk said at a conference in Dubai.
19. Bear is a beautiful, flexible writing app for crafting notes, prose, code and now sketches! Bear’s simple tools take the effort out of writing, whether you need to hit specific word counts and reading times, or you need to convert your writing into PDF and Word docs.
20. Pi: Welcome to true wireless charging. Pi Charging is the world’s first contactless, wireless charger for smartphones and tablets. Pi delivers wireless power to multiple devices safely and effortlessly.