The Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) sector covers everything from crop analysis to genetic engineering and space travel — so it’s crucial to the future of our people and planet.

If you’re thinking of launching a STEM enterprise, you’ve probably got a background in one of its constituent disciplines.

But if you’re stuck for a startup idea, get inspired by one of these five firms.

1. Holosphere VR

Birmingham-based virtual reality specialist Holosphere VR was founded in 2016 by entrepreneurs Jay Molloy and Rob Halliday-Stein.

Their room-scale VR technology can be applied to wellbeing and guided meditation — as well as immersive walk-throughs for proposed building interiors.

Meanwhile, VR video offers an effective way to showcase commercial products and services.

If you’re passionate about using tech to create alternative worlds, this type of company might motivate you.

2. BAM

If the feats of engineering and flights of imagination involved in large-scale building projects set your heart racing, construction giant BAM has been involved in some of the world’s most exciting examples.

From designing and building the Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Cambridge to building the First Direct Arena in Leeds, it’s made a name for itself with high-profile projects.

It’s unlikely you’ll scale-up a BAM-sized business quickly — but their imaginative builds may inspire you to start as a subcontractor and build from the ground up.

3. King Scientific

Many modern scientific advances still rely on dedicated researchers spending thousands of hours locked in labs with basic equipment like test tubes, rubber stoppers, beakers and PH indicator strips.

And leading laboratory equipment supplier King Scientific provides a huge choice of glass and plastic essentials for schools, universities, and multinational corporations.

If you can combine your expertise with an eye for sales and a straightforward business model, starting a similar firm in your chosen sector might be your route to success.

4. Motion Math

Proficiency in mathematics isn’t child’s play for every student and some of us struggle to grasp important concepts through traditional teaching techniques.

But gamification gurus Motion Math have developed a range of accessible puzzles that are fun to complete and educationally effective.

The model was developed at Stanford University — so it’s possible that your alma mater might also be a seedbed for innovative ideas.

5. Maana

As businesses become increasingly data-driven, it’s not always easy to rapidly extract and analyse relevant information from different storage sets to enable rapid and accurate decision-making.

But digital knowledge platform producer Maana harnesses the power of complex algorithms for just that task — and their products have been eagerly adopted by a range of Global Fortune 500 customers.

If you’ve developed clever digital tech that improves efficiency, big business might reward you handsomely.

Hopefully, you’ve found inspiration and got unstuck by studying these five fab firms — your STEM startup could be next on the list.

Which STEM company most inspires you?