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Tech Nation Reveals Scottish Nominees for Rising Stars Competition

Ross Kelly


Tech Nation’s Rising Stars will have the opportunity to pitch to more than 200 investors and corporate leaders.


Technology entrepreneur network Tech Nation has revealed the 33 regional winners of its nationwide Rising Stars competition.

Edinburgh startup Neatebox was named in the Scotland regional category along with Drinkly and healthtech firm, Talking Medicines.

The Rising Stars competition recognises some of the UK’s most exciting early-stage scaling tech companies and is designed to help founders take their businesses to the next level. The three companies will now take part in the semi-final in January, with the competition culminating in a grand final in February to see the 10 Rising Stars named.

Founded by Gavin Neate, tech for good company Neatebox helps tackle personal loneliness and communication. Its flagship Welcome platform helps improve accessibility for disabled people visiting venues and locations. Businesses are also able to sign-up to the app to improve customer experience.

Reacting to the companies recognition, Neate said: “How fantastic it is today to be recognised by Tech Nation, who have obviously seen both the societal change we are creating but also the truly incredible high-growth potential of our profit-for-purpose business model.”

Talking Medicines’ recognition marks the end of an exciting month for the firm. In October, co-founder Elizabeth Fairley secured a place on the FutureX Silicon Valley Accelerator programme following a pitch at the Startup Summit competition.

Fairley co-founded the firm with Jo Halliday and Scott Crae in 2013. Talking Medicines’ Medsmart App allows patients to monitor and manage their medicines, ensuring they are taken at the right time, in the right way and for the correct duration.

Speaking to DIGIT, Fairley commented: “Talking Medicines are delighted to be named as one of Scotland’s rising stars for Tech Nation.

“It is such an exciting time for us at Talking Medicines as we stay close to the needs of patients and continue to drive sales with pharmaceutical companies who are keen to buy insight data about how people consume their medicines in the real world. Tech Nation is a great opportunity for us to tell our story in the UK-wide finals competition.”

While not making the final trio, Frog Systems, Good-Loop and MyCustomer Lens were “highly commended” by the Rising Stars judging panel – which included Seedhaus CEO and founder, Calum Forsyth, and Turing Fest founder Brian Corcoran.

Mike Jackson, entrepreneur success director at Tech Nation, commented: “The Rising Stars regional winners announced today are testament to the UK’s exceptional tech sector, and demonstrate that there are hugely exciting tech companies across the entire nation.

“Rising Stars is an excellent platform for early-stage scaling tech companies to build their profile as they look to scale their businesses and support the UK in maintaining its position as a world leader for producing successful tech companies.”

The winners revealed today were required to be at seed to pre-Series A level funding or generating annual revenues up to £1.5m

Hazel Gibbens, Tech Nation’s entrepreneurial engagement manager for Scotland, added: “When it comes to digital tech, Scotland has hit a real momentum in recent years. It’s incredible to see the level of talent, innovation and drive being displayed by companies from across the region.

“Rising Stars is a real celebration of that work, lifting up the nation’s brightest ideas and entrepreneurs and supporting their future growth. I’m so pleased to see that Talking Medicines, Drinkly and Neatebox will represent Scotland in the semi-finals.”

Ross Kelly

Staff Writer

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