The culture, systems, processes, and even the capabilities of each industry all come into play when embarking upon digital transformation. Creating an innovative company is about large-scale cultural changes that transform your entire workforce into an innovation engine. Innovative companies are always changing, always trying out new ideas and offering new services and products.

Among many others, bPol chooses 7 innovative startups that are about to shape (digital) future of various industries.

1. Klarna 

Klarna is an e-commerce payment solutions platform for merchants and shoppers. Klarna was founded in Stockholm, Sweden and is Europe’s highest valued private fintech company. We offer products and services to consumers and retailers within payments, social shopping, and personal finances. 

Industry : Fintech

Founder : Sebastian Siemiatkowski

Why is it innovative: 

Klarna has ridden the growing wave of e-commerce, with the simple mission of simplifying the online shopping experience. The company has continued to find innovative ways to create value for consumers; users only need to enter their personal and financial information once, upon first creating a profile, after which they can place an order with a single click from any merchant on the Klarna platform (there are currently over 70,000 Klarna vendors, across 14 countries).

2. Solidia 

Solidia Technologies® is a cement and concrete technology company with award-winning, patented scientific systems that makes it easy and profitable to use CO₂ to create better building, construction, and industrial products. Investors include Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Bright Capital, BASF, BP, LafargeHolcim, Total Energy Ventures, Bill Joy and other private investors. 

Industry: Building Materials

Founder: Tom Schuler

Why is it innovative:

When it comes to climate change, cement production is a major culprit, accounting for about 7 percent of the world's greenhouse gas emissions. New Jersey-based Solidia uses a patented process to address this problem, replacing limestone with a synthetic material that requires lower temperatures and less energy than traditional methods. The cement absorbs CO2 as it hardens, all of which amounts to a production process with a 70 percent smaller carbon footprint. Solidia launched commercially in the U.S. in August 2019 through a partnership with paving company EP Henry.

3. Better.com

The fintech disruptor dismantled the home-financing ecosystem, replacing it with a digitized process that eliminates commissions, fees, unnecessary steps, and time-wasting appointments. The company, which lent more than $4 billion to homebuyers in 2019, announced a $160 million funding round in August that brought its total funding to $254 million. Now approved in 44 states, it launches in the New York market in 2020 and expects to be in all 50 states by March. 

Industry: Financial Services

Founder: Vishal Garg

Why is it innovative: 

New York City-based Better.com is trying to upend the antiquated mortgage application process by bringing it online. The company doesn't charge fees or commissions and instead makes its money only via interest. And whereas traditional mortgage applications can take weeks, getting pre-approved on Better.com takes just a few minutes thanks to a largely automated process. 

4. Vinted

Vinted is a Lithuanian online marketplace and community that allows its users to sell, buy, and swap secondhand clothing items and accessories.

Since their launch, Vinted has expanded into men's and children's clothing. According to its website, Vinted has 20 million members, with 15 thousand members joining every day. Vinted is available in ten countries. Its fans simply upload photos of items that can be bought and collected or shipped.

Industry: Internet / Fashion

Founder : Justas Janauskas

Why is it innovative

Available on iOS, Android, and desktop browsers, Vinted provides users a platform to sell their clothing and accessories, purchase or swap from other users, and communicate with members using the forums. You can search by seller, brand, size or color to find exactly what you wantwhether that’s a red cocktail dress or leopard print shoes.

5. Glovo

On-demand mobile application connects customers with independent local courier. With food at the core of the business, Glovo delivers any product within your city at any time of day.

The four-year-old startup in 2019 closed a €150m raise, nine months after raising its last round of $134m. It operates in 124 cities across 21 markets (18 of which launched in 2018).

Vision and ambition are not only to make everything immediately available in your city but it is also to offer our employees the job of their lives. A job where you'll be challenged and have the most fun working in through tech-enabled experiences.

Industry: Consumer Services

Founder: Oscar Pierre

Why is it innovative

Spanish delivery startup sensation Glovo is different from the likes of UK-based Deliveroo and US-based UberEats in that its couriers do not just pick up restaurant food for customers, but a much wider range of products.They’ll also buy you a particular dress in a size 12 from Zara, or grab some painkillers from a pharmacy or a tin of baked beans from a supermarket.

6. Revolut

Digital finance platform offering banking, currency exchange, cryptocurrency and stockbroking services — has had a remarkable 12 months in terms of growth.

Revolut is a vision to build a sustainable, digital alternative to traditional big banks. It’s mission now is to help our customers improve their financial health, empower them to have more control, and promote financial cohesion across the communities in which we operate. 

Company has around 6m customers, up from 1.5m a year ago, and is adding around 16,000 accounts a day. It has around 1,200 employees compared to 400 a year ago.

Industry: Fintech

Founder: Nik Storonsky

Why is it innovative

A world beyond banking – a secure, mobile-based current account that allows you to hold, exchange and transfer without fees in 25 different currencies

7. Bolt

Bolt is an Estonian ridesharing company founded and headquartered in Tallinn, Estonia.

The company develops and operates the Bolt mobile application, which allows people to request a taxi or private driver from their smartphone, as well as electric scooters and food delivery services.

As of December 2019, Bolt operates in 35 countries in Europe, Africa, North Africa, West Asia, North America and Australia. The company has 25 million customers globally and more than 500,000 drivers use the platform to offer rides

Industry: Information Technology & Services / Transportation

Founder: Markus Villig

Why is it innovative: 

Bolt operates its app, which enables people to hail rides from their smartphones. The application is available for Android, iOS and Windows Phone. Riders must choose a payment method: cash, credit card or mobile carrier billing before they can use the service. The customer requests a ride and confirms their pick-up location. Once the driver accepts the trip, the customer will be able to see the driver's name and car details. After the ride is completed both driver and the rider can rate each other.

It wasn't easy peeking just 7 startups. We tried to find ones that seem to be unique in their sectors. What makes them innovative? Is it just good timing and disruptive technology that stands behind Unicorns? Or is it the people, culture, and passion? From our perspective, it's a mix of all the above. In Industry 4.0 and the world of countless emerging technological startups, we are the pioneers. There are no rules, or guides on how come up with an idea, create a product or manage your operations. Would you give it a shot?

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