Innovators change lives and markets

Personal data privacy venture and global addressing scaleup what3words have been named as the life-changing and market-transforming Digital Innovators for 2018, organisers of the impact-leaning initiative have announced.

digital innovatorsIn just its second year, the Digital Innovators initiative has built influence, with its judges including trade association techUK, business lobbyist CBI and investment platform Crowdcube. The scheme is run jointly by London law firm Bird & Bird and business publisher City A.M.

Though a celebration of digital business innovation, the scheme does put an emphasis on tech for social impact.

Organisers announced the two winners last week, following a pitching event at Bird & Bird HQ. picked up the accolade in the ‘life changer’ category, while what3words scooped the ‘market transformer’ category.

London-founded what3words has divided the world into billions of three-metre squares to give anyone on earth an address that needs one.

Founded in 2013, w3w technology has picked up increasing recognition for its social impact potential. The company won the social transformation category at DigitalAgenda’s Impact Awards in March. founded in 2009, aims to put users in control of their own personal data, creating a model that questions how our data is collected online while giving people the choice on how to share their data. In 2016 it secured £4.2m in series A funding.

“Our time has come, and what we are doing is relevant to every single person,” tweeted last week.

The Digital Innovators process initially identifies a long list of 50 of “the freshest and most inspiring digital companies” from in and around London, before whittling it down over the year to a ‘power list’ of 10 determined by a public vote.  Judges voted on the final two winners from a shortlist of six that also included Billmonitor, Cera, FiveAI and Pavegen.

The two winners now receive “a tailored package of professional support to help take their businesses to the next level”.

Digital ‘power list’ 10 high on impact