With a population of under two million, Latvia’s tech scene might be smaller than comparative centres in Europe, however, the country is already proud of some home-grown global successes in the likes of Printful and Infogram. Recently, its growing startup scene has been attracting more and more attention from entrepreneurs worldwide, due to the growing number of startup programmes, initiatives and a high number of tech conferences such as TechChill, Digital Freedom Festival, iNovuss, and Deep Tech Atelier.
Latvia is also one of the first countries in the world to pass a Startup Law, and without a doubt, it will emerge as an entrepreneurial hotspot with lots of potential to grow in the future. For now, here are 10 local startups, founded between 2018-2020, to watch out for in 2021.
F3 – Research indicates that generation Z, amounting to more than 2 billion people worldwide, suffers from the adverse effects of social platforms and is searching for a more honest communication method. The Riga-based social media app F3 (founded in 2018) is filling in the gap with its app to make new friends and communicate with existing ones through visually appealing, in-depth and entertaining communication. In just 2 years of existence, the app has attracted over 25 million users and tens of thousands are joining every day, last year landing €3.2 million seed funding.
Klix – Launched in 2019 and backed by Citadele Bank, Klix is a digital wallet that streamlines the checkout experience for online shoppers. The solution aims to streamline the checkout experience for online shoppers by speeding up the purchase payment process, and saving customers’ time. Klix will remember and fill in your personal, delivery and credit card information on your behalf. All you need to do – confirm the purchase with a secure PIN code or fingerprint on your smartphone.
Marine digital – The port logistics startup Marina Digital entered the Latvian startup scene in 2019 with the idea to fill in the innovation gap in the maritime sector by boosting automation processes within the logistics. Their flagship product is an AI-powered fuel optimization system for vessels, which allows reducing fleet fuel consumption by 5-12%, and saves the atmosphere from 600 tonnes CO2 emissions per year only per vessel. The team landed a third pre-seed round in March 2020, to boost their growth further.
Longenesis – Longenesis was established in 2019 with a clear goal – to transform a traditional process of conducting biomedical research. They have developed a tool for identification of stakeholders for further collaboration, SaaS digital patient consent management tool and disease-specific tools for patients/population cohorts proactive engagement in clinical research activities. In just 3 years of existence, the company has initiated a collaboration with 20+ biomedical institutions, as well as patient organizations, biobanks, genomic sequencers, clinics and health authorities in the U.S., South Korea, Northern European region, and the Middle East.
Jeff App – Jeff App was founded in 2019 as a personalised matchmaker for people, i.e. the ‘tinder for loans’. Jeff employs elements of chatbots and personalisation to fulfill its underlying mission – to boost financial inclusion in Southeast Asia. The Riga-based startup landed €150K in January 2020 and €180K in March 2020 and has already gathered lots of media attention such as in Forbes USA print, and won Seedstars national and regional finals.
Partly – Founded in 2019, Partly aims to make household tasks easy. Via its mobile app, users can be connected to trusted service providers, to help to solve a variety of household tasks. From socket installation, dishwasher repair, furniture assembly, home cleaning and even animal care, they’ve got you covered. The startup has had a pre-seed round and grant to boost its growth, and is supported by local startup masters Startup Wise Guys.
Vigo – Globally 1 in 4 adults over the age of 25 will have a stroke in their lifetime. Rehabilitation is essential for recovery, unfortunately, limited human resources and the capacity of rehabilitation facilities may delay the process. As of May 2020 stroke survivors in Latvia have access to Vigo’s evidence-based digital therapeutics tool. Designed as a personal rehabilitation assistant, Vigo integrates artificial intelligence, remote physiotherapy, as well as modern motivation and patient support tools. It provides a wide range of physiotherapy exercises that are adapted individually to users’ needs, CBT and educational elements, all delivered in a gamified way.
ApexQubit – ApexQubit is a biotech startup helping pharmaceutical companies to automate the drug discovery process, using quantum computing and AI. The startup is committed to addressing unmet needs across a number of important therapeutics areas including oncology, cardiovascular, immunology, respiratory, neuroscience, and metabolic, with the goal of delivering innovative products to patients. Launched in 2018, ApexQubit is currently working on two candidates within the oncology field, and closed four funding rounds in 2020.
Kora – Founded in 2019, Kora is on a sustainability mission. The app gives user that extra push they need to live sustainably, giving rewards to individuals and companies for performing a wide range of sustainable activities. Via tracking technology, Kora measures mobility, e.g. if users are walking, biking, electric public transport, and trains. The team recently raised €800K to take the app to the next level.
Corebook – Corebook, founded in 2019, believes that branding is the new advertising. They could be right, with clients like Vauxhall and McCann already convinced by their service. Corebook was not built just to allow brand designers to create eye-catching digital brand guidelines to impress other designers, but also remove the anxiety of the person spending the money on branding and aspire full confidence in new brands or rebranding in 2020 and beyond. The team landed four pre-seed rounds last year, and are set for growth.
By the way: If you’re a corporate or investor looking for exciting startups in a specific market for a potential investment or acquisition, check out our Startup Sourcing Service!