Chief Innovation Officer, Issue 7

Where we shine a spotlight on new, exciting startups


Silicon Valley is technology’s Mecca. It’s home to Apple, Google and eBay, as well as some of the world’s most promising startups, including healthy eating enthusiasts ‘Sprig’ and Amanda Bradford’s ‘The League’ - heralded as ‘Tinder for elites’ by TechInsider.

Although Silicon Valley is still the dominant force, startup communities have been sprouting up all over the world. Due to the scene’s international presence, today’s startups vary in culture and purpose, and in this edition of CINO we will be examining eight of the most promising.

Barring Pavegen, each of the companies featured in this Startup Spotlight edition have reached Unicorn status. Some are potentially worth a lot more than a billion, with Shane Smith claiming that the company he cofounded, Vice, could be worth as much as $30 billion if it went public.

An entrepreneurial renaissance is good news. Companies with less than 50 employees are the lifeblood of the American economy, with organizations less than a year old creating an average of 1.5 million jobs per year. Not only that, the startup community is responsible for some of tech’s most important breakthroughs. Buoyed by the Sharing Economy, many companies have looked to remove the middle man - allowing people to use their own resources more efficiently.

The startup scene’s scope goes beyond the Sharing Economy. 3D Printing is set to create new industries, lower manufacturing costs and rebalance export and import countries. Yet the technology’s been stuck, unable to move past MakerBot - a 3D printer with a 2D foundation. Carbon3D is looking to change this. It’s CLIP technology quickens the process and improves the quality of prints.

Their CEO - Joseph DeSimone - recently spoke at a TED event, explaining what 3D Printing could be like if it were 100 times faster.

The beauty of the startup community is also its willingness to tackle mundane tasks. Thumbtack is transforming the way people hire service professionals, by simplifying how they quote for tasks. After finding it difficult to attract funding, they are now worth $1.25 billion. Another example of how a simple idea can be turned into a billion dollar business.

As well as discussing these companies, we will also feature: The Honest Company,, Pavegen, 23andMe and ZocDoc.


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