Are these 25 companies the next wave of tech superstars?

Summary:Tech City picks the first wave of businesses to run through its 'concierge service' aimed at grooming UK businesses for IPO.

Tech City UK has revealed the first wave of companies to enroll in its programme aimed at supporting fast-growing companies to grow their business and potentially float in London.

Latest review

HTC One M9 review: Iconic metal dual tone design with focus on personalization

HTC One devices are easily distinguishable from other smartphones, which is a bit unique in our black slab world. Matthew spent another week with the One M9 and gives it an almost perfect 10.

The year-long 'Future Fifty' programme will provide "concierge-style support" offering mentorship and business development support in areas such as accountancy and legal advice, corporate governance and marketing, as well as support for companies approaching a public listing.

To apply for the programme, companies need an annual revenue of at least £10m, increasing by 30 percent year-on-year over the last two years, and to be headquartered or have a significant management function based in the UK.

Joanna Shields, CEO of Tech City UK, the organisation set up to promote UK high tech businesses, said the Future Fifty programme will help the most promising companies make the UK their home and "solidify London as the world's digital capital – the most attractive destination for entrepreneurs, startups and their investors".

The government is keen to capitalise on the success of London's burgeoning tech scene with research suggesting these types of businesses generate half of new high-value jobs.

However, it has faced criticism that it's hard for small companies to do business with government , and much harder for fast-growing businesses to access capital in London than in the US — which is why many end up floating on Nasdaq or being acquired by US companies.

The Future Fifty scheme is partly a response to this criticism, as are other recent moves: earlier this year the London Stock Exchange launched a new High Growth Segment aimed at encouraging these sorts of high-growth businesses to list in London by allowing them to offer 10 percent of shares compared to the usual 25 percent.

The full list of the first 25 companies to join the Future Fifty programme is:

  • Zoopla Property Group
  • Skyscanner
  • Onefinestay
  • Omnifone
  • Neomobile
  • Mind Candy
  • Lyst
  • Just Eat
  • HouseTrip
  • Green Man Gaming
  • Farfetch
  • Box
  • Acturis
  • Calastone Limited
  • Hailo
  • Horizon Discovery
  • Huddle
  • Lumimobile
  • Mimecast Services
  • Repknight
  • Zopa
  • Secret Escapes
  • Skimlinks
  • Synthesio

Further reading

Topics: Innovation, Government, Government : UK, Start-Ups, United Kingdom


Steve Ranger is the UK editor-in-chief of ZDNet and TechRepublic, and has been writing about technology, business and culture for more than a decade. Previously he was the editor of

zdnet_core.socialButton.googleLabel Contact Disclosure

Kick off your day with ZDNet's daily email newsletter. It's the freshest tech news and opinion, served hot. Get it.

Related Stories

The best of ZDNet, delivered

You have been successfully signed up. To sign up for more newsletters or to manage your account, visit the Newsletter Subscription Center.
Subscription failed.