Keeping up with the dynamic development of the tech scene is next to impossible. Every year brings us new technologies, products and startups that rise to prominence on local and international markets. To help you make sense of where tech is headed, here are 10 most inspiring influencers on the British and Polish startup tech scene that every person interested in new technologies should follow.
1. Szymon Niemczura, Kontakt.io
Szymon is the co-founder and CEO of Kontakt.io, an established startup which competes along with Estimote in Krakow, Poland – often referred to as ‘Beacon Valley’.
He graduated in Business Management & Financial Management from National Louis University, and since 2009 has been involved in various cutting-edge projects. With that experience he launched Kontakt.io, a startup which makes the most out of beacon technologies and IoT.
And the future of his creation looks bright – about 6 months ago, the startup got $2 million of funding from Sunstone Capital and just recently it scored $5 million in a round led by Prague-based Credo Ventures.
2. Tim Hughes
Tim used to be the UK Commercial Industries Business Development Director at Oracle U, and recently founded Digital Leadership Associates.
He’s a very active member of the startup community. His Social Selling: Techniques To Influence Buyers and Changemakers is an industry classic all entrepreneurs use to boost their selling skills.
Tim is also an avid blogger, where he shares insights on social selling, but also the general state of the UK tech startup trends. A must read for everyone interested in learning more about sales in the tech industry.
3. Jakub Krzych, Estimote
Jakub is the CEO and co-founder of Estimote, a leading beacon startup which provides indoor location technologies to 65% of the Fortune 100 companies. Estimote’s fame grew after it won the award for Best Hardware Startup at TechCrunch Disrupt SF 2013.
Jakub has an MSc degree in computer science and before founding Estimote, he created AdTaily, a successful self-service advertising network.
And he’s clearly keeping up the good work. Following its initial success, Estimote is on its way to becoming even bigger – just recently the startup closed on $10.7 million in Series A funding.
4. Gemma Godfrey, FinTech
A key figure on London FinTech, Gemma Godfrey is founder and CEO of Moo.la, an online investment manager which is quickly booming into a real deal on the British tech scene.
But Gemma’s career is far more diverse. She’s a columnist for The Times and The Telegraph, sharing business investment insights with her immense readership that comprises startups and personal investors alike.
5. Michał Borkowski, Brainly
Michal Borkowski is the founder and CEO of Brainly, a Q&A platform which allows students to exchange information and help each other in peer groups.
Michal developed a prototype of the platform roughly three years ago, while being a university student. He launched Brainly under the name Zadane.pl in 2009 and has since grown the platform to an international space with over 60 million users.
Brainly’s traction in new markets and the startup’s ability to scale the platform is turning the heads of investors. Just recently, Brainly raised $15 million in a Series B funding round led by Naspers. This brings the platform’s total funding to a smashing $27 million.
6. Nic Brisbourne, Forward Partners
Nic Brisbourne is a managing partner at the early stage investor firm Forward Partners. But that’s not all. He’s also the blogger behind The Equity Kicker where he shares his insights on the dynamic London tech scene.
Nic has more than a decade of experience in venture capital industry, working in Europe, London and Silicon Valley. He’s a real expert on early stage VC investing in tech startups, especially those related to e-commerce.
7. José Neves, Farfetch
José Neves is the co-founder of Farfetch, easily one of the most prominent online fashion retail platforms. With over a decade of experience in the retail industry, José is always eager to share his knowledge with those who are on their way to success.
He began his career with a tech business he founded while still a student. In 2007 José combined his interest in tech and fashion to develop Farfetch – an online marketplace that supports independent e-commerce boutiques.
Currently counting more than 250 boutiques in its directory, Farfetch has received multiple awards and $20 million of funding from Conde Nast International.
8. Marcin Treder, UXPin
Recognized by the MIT Technology Review as one of the Innovators Under 35, Marcin Treder is behind a collaborative design software that became a real hit in Silicon Valley. Centered on user experience, UXPin provides tools for UX Designers all over the world.
Marcin has been an art and design enthusiast since he was a teenager. Following a career in UX Design and management, he developed his own start-up, UXPin. He’s an avid blogger and contributes to magazines like Smashing Magazine, Net Magazine, DesignModo, and SpeckyBoy.
Today, UXPin is a strong brand recognized by Silicon Valley communities for its innovative take on UX. Last year, UXPin raised $5 million in Series A round led by True Ventures. Who knows what they’ll be up to this year?
9. Mike Butcher, TechCrunch
This guy is responsible for the most important platform of the tech industry. As the Editor At Large of TechCrunch, Mike has the final say about what’s hot in the world of tech startups.
He also founded TechHub that today boasts 8 different locations all over the world and supports more than 750 startups across 60 countries.
Mike is present on the London scene as well – the local Disrupt event and its smashing prize attracts startups from all over the world to compete for it.
10. Marcin Piatkowski, JIVR
This London-based brand is the creation of Marcin Piatkowski, the recipient of the MIT Technology Review´s Innovators Under 35 Poland award. Initially a successful Kickstarter campaign, the JIVR chainless, folding electric bike bike attracted 204 backers who pledged more than £125,000.
Marcin designed this bike when preparing his project for a Technological Entrepreneurship Master’s Degree at University College in London. Recently, Marcin has been recognized by Forbes in its prestigious 30 Under 30 list. Way to go!
It’s smart to keep a close eye on these 10 influencers – from rising stars to established tech icons, their work and insights are bound to shape the British and Polish tech startup scene in the near future.