And the winners were…
As we successfully hosted the 2021 Hustle Awards last night at the Finsbury Business Centre (in-person finally!) and had a virtual livestream too, we saw five incredible startups take the prize across the five different categories, plus an array of talent that was also shortlisted and five amazing runner-ups. But not only that we saw our community again, and what an amazing feeling that was to be able to speak to some of you face-to-face!
The evening was kicked off by the inspiring Sonya Barlow, who really did show us she was the queen of Hustle and encouraged the audience to really go for it in the entrepreneurial world and not be afraid of failure.
We then heard from each of our judges who explained why they had chosen the winner and the runner-up and told us a little bit about each startup. We heard from Jeevan Summers, who presented the Best UK Startup award, sponsored by Avery Law, Benjamin Carew who awarded Workspace of 2021. Mark Patrick awarded the Most Innovative Tech category, sponsored by Bruntwood SciTech, and Marian Spier presented the Social Impact Hero Award. Finally, Founder of the Year was judged by Sian Winfield.
But if you were unable to make the event in-person or virtually as we held our first fully hybrid event, you may be wondering which startups took to the stage to claim their prizes?
Let me announce to you our 2021 winners.
Social Impact Hero – Goodfind
Goodfind is the only inspiring directory of sustainable brands helping consumers easily find ethical alternatives to everything in one place. The startup is a social enterprise, and its aim is to help build a more sustainable economy by supporting sustainable brands to get seen and grow their impact.
Consuming ethically is hard work and time-consuming, 56% of people globally want to lead a more sustainable lifestyle but, are faced with a lack of choice, inconvenience and a poor user experience. Sustainable brands find it difficult to compete in a saturated market where established brands with big budgets monopolise consumer attention.
But Goodfind are solving this, and revolutionising sustainable consumption by guiding people to find and compare sustainable alternatives to their everyday needs, including products, services and things to do, all whilst empowering individuals to use their purchasing power for good.
Best UK Startup – electronRx, sponsored by Avery Law
There is a fascination with the convergence of technology and human physiology in some way or another. Look at iRobot, there is a fear that technology will be the downfall of humanity. electronRx Founder Bipin Patel takes a different stance on this supposed dichotomy; that technology will enhance and improve our understanding of and our relationship with the human body, and ultimately transform our relationship with our health, and illness in general.
Bipin is really inspired by the challenge presented in human physiology. He said: “It’s an endless puzzle; not only is it generally incredibly complex, but every individual’s physiology is also unique. It’s clear in adverse side effects and refractory patient populations that pharmaceuticals will only get us so far.”
electronRx is a celebration of the fact we’ve now reached a stage where innovations in digital health technology and the advent of AI and machine learning in healthcare have opened the door to a new approach to treating disease; to a new therapeutic paradigm. We now have access to new sources of health data, not to mention the computational power to analyse and extract insights from this data, which brings with it the opportunity to map the unique physiological signature of each individual. This gives way to the bold dream of empowering each individual patient with a personalised treatment ecosystem, tailored to their unique physiology and therefore simultaneously improving and transforming their experience and outcomes.
Judge Jeevan said on choosing electronRx: “They seem to have a super experienced and diverse team and massive market opportunity.”
Most Innovative Tech – Halo Solutions, sponsored my Bruntwood SciTech
In May 2017, 22 people died in the Manchester Arena bombing. A direct cause for some was the confused communications on the ground. The right messages, not reaching the right people, at the right time, caused the unnecessary tragic loss of further lives due to medics not being able to reach those who needed them most.
Even more tragically, all of this is reasonably foreseeable. Successive studies by Miller (1956), Taylor Report (1990), The Hillsborough Independent Panel (2012) Pollock Report (2013), JESIP Principles (2014) and Goldstein (2015) all showed that communications in a crisis fail. Yet no-one had done anything about it, until Halo Solutions did.
Halo Solutions were a team of police officers, including the Head of Tactical Support at the National Counter Terrorism Unit at the time of the bombing who'd had enough of poor communications and a lack of systems being available to the public for their use at stadia, arenas, festivals and events.
These people came together with a vision to help, left their secure jobs and threw everything into it.
The startup launched its MVP in May 2018, a year to the day after the tragic events that inspired them to do better, and are proud to say since that time they have saved four lives, protected over ten million people and continue to go from strength to strength.
Commenting on his choice Mark said: “Listening to some of the heart-breaking stories from the Manchester Arena hearing, anything that helps the world avoid such tragic events is commendable. The Halo system aims to prevent any critical information from being overlooked, stopping security incidents and potential tragedy before it happens.”
Workplace of 2021 – Mindspace
Mindspace aims to create a space that’s fun and exciting to come to every day. People spend so many hours in the office and Mindspace realises that it needs to be a place that is inspirational, and enjoyable as well as one that supports and empowers the members to do their best job and make them feel at home and happy.
Each of the 31 locations are different, both in design and atmosphere. London is different to Berlin and what's even more incredible is that Berlin is different to Munich, despite both cities being in the same country. And that is what Mindspace are particularly sensitive to. With a high level of professionalism, it brings a global mindset to each of these cities, but at the same time is aware of the micro-culture within each location.
Mindspace has a dedicated interior design and creative team that research each and every city to create the Mindspace experience, with an emphasis on curated aesthetic design and leveraging of local art talent. Attention is paid to every detail, making employees feel comfortable, appreciated, and inspired.
Othership's Ben who is super passionate about accomodating workspaces, said: "Thank you making me feel at ease and comfortable in your space, and not only wanting to make sure I had everything I needed whilst there, but caring beyond that and about me."
Founder of the Year – James Lemon Otolo
After the year we have all been through and especially the hospitality industry it is amazing to see someone that is really trying to help and bring people in the industry together.
Otolo is an online global community set up by team of hotels professionals that were left furloughed and unemployed by the COVID-19 crisis. It is a free, government-backed platform powered by its community to learn, network, share ideas and develop solutions to help rebuild and recover from the past traumatic 12 months.
Otolo Founder and CEO James Lemon set up the platform after his consultancy businesses dried up during the pandemic. Spotting an opportunity to help those out of work in the sector skill-up and improve their employability chances as lockdown lifted, he hired a team made up of those among the estimated 1.6 million UK hotel and hospitality professionals – half of the sector’s workforce - who faced financial uncertainty from being on furlough or made redundant during the three UK COVID-19 lockdowns.
With inclusivity at its core, Otolo is an ever-growing community of more than 1,000 members at varying stages of their careers, looking either for mentoring to help further their careers or for mentees to coach and give back to their industry.