Our 10 Startups to watch in 2014
This year was a great year for laying the foundations. Many entrepreneurs started out on the road to something exciting, disruptive and in many cases life-changing for their users, and game changing for their industry. In 2014 these newbie startups will begin to grow and scale and we think that you will start seeing some big things from all of them!
1. The Best Day
Other than the fact they closed a significant round of funding this year during their time at the INCUBATE accelerator, what they have planned for 2014 is what really excites us. In order to make planning events with friends easier they plan to integrate a TheBestDay button across media sites and event sites to make it simple to plan and buy tickets with friends at the click of a button, essentially getting rid of back and forth emails, texts, chats and other merry go round communication habits we never commit in.
2. Side Racket
In 2014 it will be less about tasks and more about projects, we also believe that you will see a lot of people working in full or part time roles whilst dipping their toes in something entrepreneurial on the side. Side Racket allows you to check out what others are doing on the side and join, contribute and help build and create stuff you are passionate about. The “do what you love” economy will be big next year.
3. Stage Label
Fashion changes every year, and fashion technology has started to change along with it. People are more willing to support (especially in the age of the hipster) labels and brands that come from a community focused beginning, that is why we think crowdfunding for fashion startup Stage Label is going to be hitting some home runs in 2014.
Everybody has been talking about Canva at the back end of this year, and for good reason. They are revolutionising the way that people and businesses think about design, making it simple and accessible for the everyday small business owner. 2014 will be all about traction, after all when pitching for their capital raise they had to prove how they could become a billion dollar business. Next year should see their already 100,000 users increase dramatically.
When it comes to media platforms we are going to see three things in the next 12 months, a major shift in the way we are able to access television programs and movies, a massive change in the way publications integrate content and marketing and a shake up in the way people consume radio and audio based media. Omny are constantly improving the technology on their product and allow users to filter out what they don’t like giving them a personalised radio experience. Generation Y and Z are all about this type of customisation.
Keeping with the theme of collaboration, Skwibl allows users to take “the big red pen” and apply it in a cloud setting. As 2014 will be a year popular with outsourcing projects and flexible working arrangements especially in the small business sector, this platform is ideal for allowing workers to communicate without the annoying email threads, boosting productivity across the workplace.
This startup is targeted at a niche audience but that audience has a lot of money behind them. Since it’s launch a few months ago iFlyFlat have taken Australia by storm, they have gotten massive amounts of media coverage and their user base is growing well above the pace they expected it to. Next year we will see a focus by these guys on the Medium sized business sector saving companies money on travel with their business class tickets.
Dating is one of the most competitive industries that exists globally. MayDate is all about finding the person that you love, but also giving back to a social cause. Business for purpose is a big focus in 2014 and MayDates team have a strong background in past commercial ventures and will be focused on scaling over the next twelve months aligning everything to hit their goals of “x” number of dollars raised for charity.
After announcing their recent funding round a couple of weeks ago, it is clear that the PocketBook team are gearing up for a massive year in 2014. These guys slogged it out in the living room of a Wolli Creek apartment block proving their concept for nearly a year before taking investment, and now with big names in finance like David Koch behind them and major international awards under their belt, these guys are going to become the mecca of personal budgeting software.
After announcing some key executive hires at the back-end of this year, Adioso is all about driving growth and user acquisition in 2014. The new slick design of their site along with new engagement strategies and simplistic search are going to mean that this company will be a shining star next year within the travel industry on a global level.