Written by Miranda Drew • Published 2nd July 2018 • 3 minute read

Have you checked out Startups top 100 businesses to watch in 2018? The annual list gives you insight into the best entrepreneurs and businesses in the UK right now. The final 100 innovative and dynamic start-ups are bursting with brilliant ideas, smart operational models and revolutionary technology.

It was tough to narrow it down, but we’ve picked our top five “ones to watch.”

  1. Koru Kids 

Launched by Rachel Carrell in 2016, Koru Kids provides parents with an efficient, affordable option for childcare. Carrell worked out that most families with children spend as much money on childcare as they do on their mortgage and set out to address this costly problem.

The service works by matching two families to one nanny, so each family pays less, while the nanny gets paid more. Better still, children get more individual attention than at nursery but are still socialised and make new friends. It’s a win-win!

Carrell believes flexible, convenient and reasonable childcare options are fundamental to equality and participation in the workforce. We couldn’t agree more.

  1. Pension Bee 

 The UK’s pension system is complex and confusing at the best of times…Just last week a friend showed me a letter about the windfall of £6 she’s set to receive from an ancient pension. So, what are we to do with these dormant pensions?

That’s where PensionBee comes in.

Co-founder Romi Savova joined forces with Jonathan Lister to launch PensionBee in 2014 after she endured a lengthy struggle to switch pension providers. It applies the well-established technology of mobile banking to the last digital-holdout in the personal finance realm – pensions – to make preparing for your future as easy (and as transparent) as managing your money with a current account.

PensionBee combines all your existing pensions into one simple online pension you can manage anywhere, anytime. It is committed to fairer fees, good-value plans and, best of all, a straightforward dashboard. Sign us up!

  1. Pip & Nut 

Despite all the nutritional benefits, health food is often dismissed as bland (probably the fault of kale smoothies) so that’s why we love Pip & Nut, a range of nut butters infused with the belief that health food should never be boring.

Pip Murray, marathon runner and lover of the great outdoors, was looking for tasty food packed with nutrients and energy to fuel her adventures. So, in 2013 she created these nutritious and delicious nut butters and started selling them at Maltby St Market in London.

In 2015, Pip & Nut moved onto the shelves of Selfridges and is now stocked in more than 5,000 shops across the country, including Sainsbury’s, Tesco and ASDA… as well as on the morning toast of many at PHA!

  1. Syft

The best things come in small, purple icons… right? That’s certainly the case for Syft, a company that is shaking up the flexible staffing industry in a big way.

Hospitality and warehousing businesses can list the understaffed shifts available, and the online platform sifts through its database to match fully trained and vetted workers to the role.

Staff are paid above minimum wage and are even eligible for a range of perks and benefits, as well as being motivated to work hard due to the app’s candidate rating system.

By cutting out the middleman, Syft is more cost-effective and efficient than traditional flexible staffing agencies – their record time for filling a shift is 2 seconds!

Co-founded by Jack Beaman and Novo Abakar – two entrepreneurs with fascinating careers – Syft is already a trusted provider of staff to the Gordon Ramsay restaurants, Hilton hotels, Victoria Warehouse and others.

  1. Divido 

Christer Holloman co-founded Divido in 2015 with two of his friends, Anders Hallsten and Fredrik Borquist, after he discovered his local furniture supplier was unable to offer him a finance plan with monthly instalments.

Divido is now linked up with over 750 retailers and it allows you to pay for big-ticket items over several months rather than in a lump sum. It gives smaller stores a chance to compete against large chains that offer a range of payment methods. As a result, sales are booming for its participating retailers.

Divido’s revolutionary concept is exciting enough, but factor in an impressive list of backers, including those who invested in Skype and Transferwise, and it has earned a well-deserved spot on our “ones to watch” list. While the purchase price may be divided thanks to Divido, public opinion at PHA definitely isn’t!

From childcare challengers to fantastic finance solutions, our award-winning team are enthusiastic about entrepreneurs who are ready to make their mark on any industry. If you’re interested in raising your profile in the media, get in touch to find out more.