Capturing the cream of UK small business, this year’s Smarta 100 are a credit to entrepreneurial Britain. While two thirds are self-funded, the list are turning over £67m, generating profits of £12m and have created more than 900 jobs.
This year’s winners include Blaze, whose innovative laser light projects the symbol of a bike onto the road ahead of a cyclist and into a motorist’s ‘blindspot’; London Nail bar Ciate London, run by 23 year-old Charlotte Knight who has overseen growth of 500% in the past two years and expanded into 21 countries; tech trailblazers Thread are bringing top fashion stylists to the masses; and Spreddit, is turning the credit industry on its head by enabling people to pay for luxury products in installments for free.
Now it’s time to vote for your favourite business to be crowned no1!
The 100 businesses have been split into 10 special award categories of 10 start-ups. Voting is now open to decide the winners of each category. The 10 winners will receive £1,000 and make the final shortlist for the grand prize £10,000 ‘Smarta 100, together with O2, business of the Year’ award.
There are also some unusual entries in this year’s 100. Eat Ento believes its edible insects is the next food craze; My Sex Doctor is a sex education app for teenagers; Plan Bread, makes low carb Broccoli bread; while Gary Downie’s social enterprise Streetkleen Bio Ltd has been adapted by local councils to convert dog waste into renewable energy.
The 2013 Smarta 100 join previous winners Naked Wines, Huddle, Funding Circle, Graze, Zoopla, Crowdcube and SuperJam as companies identified by Smarta at an early stage
The overall winner will be decided by the Smarta 100 judging panel, led by Dragons’ Den star Piers Linney, founder of Outsourcery and Holly Tucker MBE, co-founder of notonthehighstreet.com, King of Shaves founder Will King and enterprise editor of the Mail on Sunday, Helen Loveless.
The chosen business will be announced at the Smarta 100 awards ceremony on the 12 November at London’s Café de Paris.
Announcing the 2013 Smarta 100, Piers Linney said:
"It's fantastic to see such range and depth of innovative business ideas spread throughout the Smarta 100 together with O2. It's inspiring to know Britain is producing so many disruptive and forward thinking enterprises that are making a positive impact on the UK economy and helping to reduce unemployment.
“I'm looking forward to crowning the overall business of the year and meeting the winners at the awards ceremony.”
So who will it be? Head to www.smarta.com/smarta100 to vote for your favourite!