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90 startups join £500,000 MassChallenge UK accelerator competition

MassChallenge UK has unveiled the 90 startups that will be competing in its accelerator programme for a £500,000 equity-free cash award.

Almost half of the cohort are London-based and performed particularly well in “high tech” sectors, including internet and web services, enterprise software and hardware, with translator Babelverse, travel memory collator Timelooper, investor portfolio manager Xenapto and branded content platform Vidsy all selected to join the competition.

MassChallenge UK runs from June to October and the teams will have free space to work on their startups at Tobacco Dock in East London.

Gordon Merrylees, NatWest’s head of entrepreneurship, who will be mentoring on the programme, said: “The breadth of industries represented by this year’s MassChallenge UK finalists demonstrates an enviable depth of entrepreneurial talent and innovation found in the UK.

“Whether their focus is on the fashion, food, medtech or fintech sector, these budding entrepreneurs will receive access to first-class mentoring, expertise and support from NatWest and MassChallenge, while having the opportunity to share and learn from each others’ collective experiences within their startup and growth community.”

Other partners include: Unilever, Visa Europe Collab, Digital Catapult, Tech City UK, The Manchester Growth Company, GCHQ, Media City UK, Fried Frank Technology, Taylor Wessing, The Collective and Crowdcube.

The UK programme runs in parallel with MassChallenge Boston, where 128 startups will be working on their ideas.

Across the 218 startups competing in both cities, there are 22 different countries represented, with the majority working in high tech, followed by consumer goods, healthcare, then social impact and finally cleantech.