Congratulations to Hummingbird Technologies: KPMG’s 2019 Best British Tech Startup


  • Hummingbird Technologies (London)
  • ZigZag Global is a software solution to help ecommerce retailers manage returns domestically and globally. (London)
  • Grid Edge is an Artificial Intelligence startup company that provides AI software services to commercial building operators to empower them to intelligently optimise their building’s energy profile, and become active and empowered participants in the energy system. (Midlands)
  • Optalysys is developing optical AI systems designed to accelerate the most demanding deep learning and pattern recognition tasks at groundbreaking speeds but at a fraction of the energy consumption of traditional computing hardware. (North)
  • Oxford Space Systems (OSS) is an award-winning space technology business that's pioneering the development of a new generation of deployable antennas and structures for the global satellite industry. (South)

London region semi-finalists:

  • Exo Investing leverages technology to make personalised wealth management accessible to everyone.
  • Garrison Technology has pioneered an innovative security platform to counter the threat of persistent and targeted attacks which exploit corporate Internet connectivity.
  • GTN is based at Google Campus and combines machine learning and quantum physics, using their unique patented technology, Generative Tensorial Networks, to efficiently discover innovative new drug-like molecules.
  • SenSat make it possible for computers to understand the real-world by creating highly detailed simulated realities.
  • Trint, based in Whitechapel, uses artificial intelligence to power its web-based automated transcription platform.
  • yulife in Camden Town, is a pioneering lifestyle insurance company. It brings together life insurance, wellbeing and rewards in one simple app.

Midlands region semi-finalists:

  • Aeristech specialises in the commercialisation of systems employing ultra-high speed motors and compressors. Its patent protected, variable speed motor technology, using rare earth magnets and high-speed low-cost switching devices, aims to be more powerful, faster and more efficient than any other in its class.
  • brightLET is an innovative platform designed to connect the dots between landlords, tenants, and tradespeople. We use automation and bots to help landlords manage their properties themselves, saving them time and money in agent fees.
  • eTravelSafety is paving the way for Travel Safety, demonstrating how leveraging modern technology can elevate the industry and allow anyone to travel safely. Our attitude focuses on replacing inefficient processes with solutions that help people stay safe, and make that job as easy as possible for everyone involved.
  • Exposure Analytics is a market leader in experiential analytics for events and retail. We work with brands and agencies to evaluate the success of their activations, events and conferences.
  • HausBots are building robots that build houses. Our first robot is a Wall Climbing Painting Robot, for use in large commercial and warehouse settings, helping to save money and increase site safety.
  • Quanta Engineering is developing an air breathing ion engine for Earth and space applications. The engine aims to revolutionise the drone industry, launch vehicles and interplanetary transportation.
  • Supermeal is an online takeaway discovery platform with 450+ restaurants and 5500+ consumers in the West Midlands.

North region semi-finalists:

  • AppLocum is a rapidly growing tech-enabled recruitment venture designed specifically for the healthcare industry. Through the app they can deliver a perfectly suited clinician to Surgeries or Treatment Centres in a fast, effective and hassle-free manner.
  • DigiDentistry is revolutionising education by providing an advanced way of learning using augmented reality and animation targeting all learning domains. They offer a multi-language system and an intelligent e-learning platform. No wifi accessible, adaptable and delivering instant professional information.
  • Nivo Solutions Ltd is a secure messaging network where you can instantly talk to a range of financial services brands and open a new product in minutes.
  • RapidSpike is a Digital Experience Monitoring Platform that interacts with digital platforms exactly as customers do. RapidSpike pinpoints critical platform issues and improvements by collating real time and synthetic data on customer interactions, system performance and security into clear compelling actionable insights.
  • SPINR is a superfast, cloud-based, integration platform, providing real-time data and insight to any organisation. It can help make the process of integrating, cleansing and sharing data simple, efficient and accessible to all. SPINR is the straightforward choice for organisations that hold data across systems and silos that would be more powerful if brought together.
  • WIFIPLUG is the smartest smart plug on the planet, works with Siri, Alexa, Google & Cortana, no bridge required. The only smart plug to pay for itself.
  • Synap is an intelligent online training platform that helps organisations deliver personalised, effective and engaging training at scale. Synap breaks down training topics into easily digestible, 5-10 minute chunks tailored to each individual's strengths and weaknesses, helping them to learn more in less time.

South region semi-finalists:

  • Donate The Change is a fintech company delivering a ‘plug and play’ API driven software platform. Triggered from any online, contactless, or chip & PIN payment Donate The Change automatically creates, processes and distributes micro-donations to a user's selected beneficiary at no cost.
  • Gooseberry Planet is an award-winning educational software platform that supports and enhances curriculum delivery for Online Safeguarding in Primary Schools.
  • Kymira is life-conscious technology company with the sole aim of enhancing people’s lives through innovation. They aim to blend technology and biology in perfect harmony to release the limitless potential of human ability.
  • MeVitae leverages data-driven cognitive solutions to help solve the world’s biggest employment challenges, from increasing workplace diversity to global mobility.
  • Open Cosmos provides simple and affordable space missions to help solve the world’s biggest challenges, enabling organisations from across a wide range of industries to use space technologies as a tool. Open Cosmos removes space access barriers by simplifying space technology, offering a one-stop-shop to orbit, reducing time and cost.
  • Redbox Mobile is a full-service App Store Optimisation company with an innovative difference, Blackbox Platform. The Blackbox Platform is a fully automated paid search platform which gives users the ability to monitor their campaigns 24/7 and make changes at the click of a button.
  • Serelay's Trusted Media Capture (TMC) technology enables any mobile device user to capture photos and videos which are inherently verifiable.

About BBTS

Since launching BBTS in 2013, this annual competition has been propelling forward the game changers, the disruptors and tech titans of tomorrow.

BBTS finalists receive an incredible opportunity to profile their businesses to senior corporate decision makers, investors and the media. This includes presenting their business at Mobile World Congress (MWC) and Four Years from Now (4YFN) in Barcelona, February 2019 - the world’s largest annual mobile industry gathering.

Applications for BBTS 2019 are now closed. Thanks to all those who entered.

Frequently asked questions

If you can't find your answer below, please email

How can I participate in the competition?

To enter the competition, a company must fill out the short online application form before the deadline of 25 November 2018. To request an application form click here.

Who can apply?

Any technology startup that is registered and based in the UK can apply. We are looking for startups that have innovative, proven technologies, robust business models, the ability to demonstrate traction in their activities and the potential to scale. All entrants entering the competition on behalf of the company must be residents in the UK aged 18 years or over. KPMG employees and contractors are prohibited from entering the competition. The competition is not open to any business which is a KPMG audit client or an affiliate or a connected party to the audit client.

When can I apply to participate in the competition?

You can apply now. Applications will close on 25 November 2018. All applications must be received by no later than 11.59pm (GMT) on 25 November 2018.

Which location should I apply to?

We kindly ask that you apply to the location that is closest to your office headquarters.

Is there a limit to the number of entries?

Entrants may apply more than once, but there should not be more than one entry per company.

What are the costs involved in participation?

There is no charge for entering into the competition, although all costs relating to attending the UK-based heats will be borne by the participants themselves. KPMG will cover return flights (from the UK), accommodation and conference passes for the finalists to present in Barcelona at 4YFN 2019 at MWC 2019.

Will I receive feedback on my application?

Due to the volume of entries received we are unable to provide feedback to unsuccessful applicants.

We absolutely value the time and effort that applicants put into their submissions and each business that enters and thank you for your participation.

What is the criteria to enter?

Startups will be a registered UK company. Will have generally been operating for 5 or less years. Will be either a pure technology or a tech-enabled business. Will not be majority owned by a large corporate. Must be available to pitch at UK regional events in January 2019. Must be able to attend Mobile World Congress 2019 in Barcelona.

How do I know if my company qualifies as a 'tech startup' for the purpose of this competition?

We aim to be as inclusive as possible; if you think you are a tech startup, we encourage you to apply.

What stage should my company be at to be considered?

Generally we are looking for companies that have been operating for 5 or less years, and must have a viable product/service.

What is the pitching format?

Each company will be given a total of eight minutes on stage, four minutes to pitch followed by four minutes for Q&A with the judging panel. All presentations must be in Microsoft PowerPoint file format. However, no video, audio or live demonstrations are permitted.

What is the judging criteria?

The first round will be assessed under three categories with equal weighting to each; innovation and disruption, market potential, and momentum.

Each pitching competition will be judged by a panel of industry experts. All applications will be scored under four categories with equal weighting to each. The categories are; pitch quality, disruption and innovation, market potential, and traction and momentum. The decisions of the panel will be final.

How many startups will be selected to showcase at 4YFN at Mobile World Congress 2019?

Five UK heat winners will be showcased at 4YFN at Mobile World Congress 2019.

What are the costs involved in participation?

There is no charge for entering into the competition, although all costs relating to attending the UK-based heats will be borne by the participants themselves. KPMG will cover return flights (from the UK), accommodation and conference passes for finalists to present in Barcelona at 4YFN 2019 at MWC 2019.

What are the competition prizes?

Prizes include:

  • Pitch on one of the main stages at the 2019 Four Years From Now (4YFN) and Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona.
  • Exhibit at 4YFN at a dedicated, prominent booth. The conference is attended by 20,000+ founders, investors and corporate decision makers from around the world. Flight, accommodation, exhibiting platform and conference pass are included.
  • Profile your business with the media before, during and after MWC, leveraging KPMG channels.
  • Attend national KPMG Inspiring Speakers events with business luminaires and CEOs from leading fast growth private UK business.

Finalists will be provided return flights from the UK to Barcelona, accommodation in Barcelona during the conference and conference passes to attend MWC 2019 and 4YFN 2019, limited to one person per company.

The prizes cannot be substituted by an alternative, cash or otherwise.

How and when will the winners be notified?

At each regional heat, the winners will be notified on the day of the competition as part of a short award ceremony. The final winner will be announced on stage at MWC 2019.

How and when will the results be announced?

The results will be announced on the day of each heat, and will be made publicly available at the end of the event series in a specific publication on A press release will also be issued.

Is there any publicity involved?

KPMG Enterprise will be promoting the heats alongside various partners throughout the course of the series. By entering the competition, you agree that any personal information provided by you with the competition entry may be held and used by KPMG to administer the competition.

If you are a winner of the competition, you agree that KPMG may use your name, image and company branding to announce the winner of this competition and for any other reasonable and related promotional and marketing purposes.

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