Well – 2017 has been an incredible year!
Our portfolio is growing fast (in size and value!), we’ve met (and interviewed!) some fascinating people, we’ve worked on 31 products this year and delivered 7 brand new ones, we’ve won a couple of awards, hosted some brilliant events and raised a bit of cash for charity. We’ve eaten an estimated 200 jerk chicken sandwiches between us and about 1,000 slices of cake…
This year we partnered with and received an investment from Creative England enabling us to create an “early stage programme” for pre seed startups. 2018 will see this flourish, create more jobs, and inspire creativity in Bristol and beyond.
Here’s the full roundup…
Last year, the companies in our portfolio were valued at £20,000,000. This year, they are worth a combined £26,608,071.
There are now 19 startups in our portfolio.This year, we invested in 8 new startups:
- Crowdfunding agency IdeaSquares
- SourceCards, a payments platform for charities to connect with the people they help
- Greengame who are incentivising sustainable decisions
- Workplace fatigue management startup Safr
- Social treating startup Givvit
- Collaborative event management startup, Tawr
- Food and drink content platform Foozie
- Experience marketplace Datemakers
Between them, our portfolio companies employ 75 people (up 66% from last year) and we can’t wait to help create more new jobs in 2018.
We have worked on 31 products this year and have launched 6 new startup products including:
We were thrilled when Beccy Kedward joined our board of directors – she’s the first director to join Simpleweb in 7 years!
We’ve also been fortunate enough to meet and chat to hundreds of talented people with interesting ideas, including:
- Co-Founder of Ethereum Gavin Wood
- Author and director at Demos Jamie Bartlett
- Moz founder Rand Fishkin
- Creative Director of Google Creative Lab Tea Uglow
- VP of Growth at Duolingo, Gina Gotthilf
- Lead Experience Designer at Minecraft, Tobias Ahlin
- Futurist Gerd Leonhard
- Data scientist, entrepreneur and investor and TED fellow, Jon Gosier
- Growth Advisor in Residence at Greylock Partners, Casey Winters
Earlier this year, Simpleweb won the #DoDifferent Award for Product Innovation for our work with OLIO. We were up against some of the country’s biggest full-service, creative and marketing agencies – not bad for a little software company from Bristol!
We were also named one of Red Herring’s top 100 tech companies in Europe 🙂
We’ve had the pleasure of holding some really incredible events this year. Here’s just a few highlights…
In April, we flew the entire Simpleweb team to Sitges in Spain’s Catalonia region for a multi day hack event. It was a weekend to remember and some amazing stuff was created. Our team is awesome and it was great to spend some time together working on our own personal projects 🙂
We also got to hold our first blockchain themed hacknight, exploring how blockchain technologies can create a positive impact on cities. It was incredible to see the range of ideas and talent within our community. Join us on Meetup to find out about our next hacknight next year!
This year, we’ve met some incredibly inspiring young people and we’ll definitely be doing a lot more like this next year.
In the summer, we were joined by a year 10 student who prototyped his first app – which included a pretty cool retention game! – in just one week. More of this please!
We ran a handful of prototyping workshops with young people from Colston Girls School and Henbury School exploring the importance of curiosity and creativity in the startup world. The events have garnered lots of attention which we’ll be utilising to expand our schools programme to support as many young people as we possibly can in the future.
And finally… we’re proud of our team for raising over £1,000 for local charities this year with our monthly cake sales. Please do check out the amazing local charities our team have chosen to support including Julian House, Womankind, Young Mothers Group Trust, Aid Box Community, Temwa, Off the Record and Julian Trust.
Thanks to our amazing team for tirelessly delivering inspiring work and working as a tight unit. And thanks to our clients, and portfolio companies for stimulating us with such interesting projects and ways of thinking 😊
Next year, we intend to continue working towards our purpose – creating new jobs and making work more enjoyable and rewarding for everyone. That means we’ll be investing in even more startups, investing in our team and creating as many opportunities for learning and growth for young people and our community as we possibly can.
Bring it on 2018!