12 young British tech stars aiming to change the world

Accenture Technology Labs Staff
Sam Shead

Sam Shead

Sam Shead joined Techworld as a reporter in July 2013. He studied Geography with Science Communication at Royal Holloway University before completing a postgraduate diploma in journalism at Cardiff University. Areas that he covers for Techworld include startups, entrepreneurship, wearables, mobile and telecoms.

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An enthusiastic army of teenagers and young 20-somethings are largely to thank for the tech movement that has swept across the UK over the last few years. 

Inspired by the hundreds of millions of dollars that have been made by the likes of Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg, Bebo's Michael Birch, Snapchat's Evan Spiegel, and Box's Aaron Levie, a new generation of talented young tech-types are looking to turn their start-ups into the next big thing. 

Techworld asked some of the leading start-up experts in the UK to nominate who they believe are the most promising entrepreneurs under the age of 25.  

Those that feature were nominated by the following people:

  • Benjamin Southworth - former deputy CEO of Tech City
  • Matthew Clifford - co-founder of Entrepreneur First
  • Alice Bentinck - co-founder of Entrepreneur First
  • Oli Johnson - co-founder of Rain Making Loft
  • Sam Shead - senior reporter for Techworld

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Duncan Peters (23)

Duncan is the founder of an app called eRipple that aims to connect entrepreneurs with potential co-founders, advisers and support groups. For example, the app could be used to connect an entrepreneur with business development skills to a talented coder. On his LinkedIn profile, the former Bath University student states that he is aiming to globally connect 100,000 budding Mark Zuckerberg's and Richard Branson's.

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Emma Walker (21)

You may recognise Emma. That's because she was a semi-finalist on Sir Alan Sugar's Junior Apprentice in 2011, having beaten 28,000 other applicants. Having already directed companies of her own and been an entrepreneur in residence at an all girl's school, Emma now produces programs for General Assembly - a company that "transforms thinkers into creators through education and opportunities in technology, business, and design."

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Tade Oyerinde (20)

Tade is the co-founder and CEO of GleePost - a social discovery platform that allows students to have random chats with other students exclusively at their university. Tade, still an aerospace engineering student at Leeds University, spent a number of months running his business from a Tesco-backed accelerator space called Rainmaking Loft, which is based next to London's Tower Bridge.

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Elia Videtta (23)

Elia is the co-founder and VP of engineering at Adbrain, a start-up with a platform that aims to help digital advertisers target and reach their consumers, no matter what device they're on. The Warwick University computer science graduate won the prestigious IBM Prize in 2010 for developing a technically innovative derivative trading solution for Deutsche Bank. He then went on to be a part of the Entrepreneur First cohort, which is designed to help the UK's leading technology entrepreneurs succeed.

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Isabel Bescos (23)

As international marketing manager at BlaBlaCar, a European ride-sharing platform that is used by over a million people a month, Isabel is using her multinational background and her ability to speak five languages to grow the company into new markets. The Bath University psychology graduate has also participated in the Entrepreneur First programme and counts being able to ski backwards as one of her greatest achievements to date.

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Leo Anthias (23)

Leo, based in California's famous Y Combinator tech accelerator, is the chief technology officer of collaboration platform Kivo. The St Andrews University English and Modern History graduate says he wants to build the best collaboration software in the world. He also has a knack for wine tasting.

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James Anderson (16)

James, considerably younger than the others on this list, was spotted by Richard Branson, Stephen Fry and Steve Wozniak, after he and his friends launched Thinkspace. Thinkspace aims to teach young people how to code by creating designated areas within primary and secondary schools where students can go and learn how to develop apps.

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Andrew Brackin (19)

Andrew, the founder of a P2P parking app called Spot that allows drivers to park on other people's driveways in San Francisco, was selected as the recipient of the highly sought after Thiel Fellowship last summer. Awarded every year by Paypal Founder and Facebook investor Peter Thiel, the Fellowship involves 20 selected participants, all under 20, to drop out from traditional education and start a company.

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George Burgess (21)

George is the founder of an education start-up called Gojimo that brings study guides and quizzes from the world's top educational publishers to a student's mobile phone and tablet. The Stanford University dropout received over $1 million for his idea from Index Ventures earlier this year, making him one of the youngest founders Index has invested in since it was founded in 1996. The money has allowed George to increase the size of his team from two to five.

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Alex Klein (23)

Alex is the co-founder of a start-up that has pioneered "a lego-like computer that anyone can make". It comes as a kit and is designed to give people of all ages the ability to make their own technology, rather than just consume it. Alex, who holds degrees from the universities of Yale and Cambridge, raised $1.5 million (£0.9 million) for Kano on Kickstarter recently, making it the most crowd-funded learning invention ever.

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John Collison (24)

John co-founded online payments platform Stripe with his older brother Patrick, in Silicon Valley in 2010, after graduating from Harvard with a maths degree. The entrepreneur, whose hobbies include flying and playing the piano, has raised $130 million (£77 million) in total, with the help of high-profile investors like Peter Thiel, Elon Musk, Max Levchin and Sequoia Capital.

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Nick D’Aloisio (18)

Nick is the teenager behind the Summly app that was bought by Yahoo for a reported $30 million (£18 million). He is now a product manager at Yahoo and has recently overseen the development of the Yahoo News Digest app, which launched in the UK earlier this year. D'Aloisio is now starting to invest in other technology companies, with Swedish ecommerce start-up TicTail becoming his first investment, just last month.

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