Hungary and its capital Budapest have been emerging as a top destination for tech entrepreneurs in the last few years, mostly due to its vibrant ecosystem, government-led initiatives, accelerator programmes, innovation labs, and homegrown VCs. If you add here affordable costs of living and a growing talent pool of developers, the country has a lot to offer. No wonder Hungarian startup products are becoming known worldwide; think of the country’s first unicorn Prezi and its popular presentation tool, the live video streaming scaleup Ustream, remote connectivity SaaS scaleup LogMeIn, or automated driving scaleup AIMotive.
With so many promising Hungarian startups on the horizon, it was hard to select 10 for this article. We scanned the horizon for young startups founded between 2017-2020, with fast-growing teams, having landed funding or showing promising signs in the past few months, among others. Having completed an in-depth analysis, these are the startups we’ll be watching in 2021:
Seon – When Tamas and Bence started their first project together, a crypto exchange for the CEE region, they immediately became the target of constant attacks from fraudsters. So they decided to create one themselves in 2017. The result is Seon, a fraud-detection solution that draws on data from across the internet to establish customers’ digital footprints to wean out false accounts and prevent fraudulent transactions from taking place. Online security is increasing in priority daily, and the former classmates were quick to get the attention of investors, raising €1.6 million in seed funding from PortfoLion and Fiedler Capital. KLM, Air France and EuroBet already feel safer with Seon.
Coders Rank – Launched in 2018, CodersRank aims to support software developers’ professional growth and job-seeking. How? Simply create a profile on CodersRank, let the platform aggregate all your developer activity from different platforms such as GitHub, GitLab, StackOverflow, LinkedIn and start the search. CodersRank will connect you with jobs that match your experience and interest, or if you are looking to expand your knowledge, CodersRank can also help you establish your personalized Learning Path and guide you through the steps you need to take.
Péntech – Founded in 2019, Pentech is a digital factoring service that enables managers to arrange their factoring, lending and claims management issues quickly, easily and completely online with transparent terms and fees. Their flagship solution is a digital factoring solution where customers can receive a custom offer and a funding plan in a matter of hours after uploading their invoices, enabling SMEs to increase their liquidity. In addition to this, the startup offers a number of additional services such as bank loans, claims management and financial consulting. In 2020, the startup landed €720K to ensure more businesses’ financial stability.
StyleHub – Tailored for fashion, design and lifestyle brands, StyleHub (founded in 2018) is offering an e-commerce platform to empower their online presence. The platform helps with setting up an online shop, as well as providing a content management tool, automation engine to plan and manage social media, content and sales campaigns, marketing tools, an analytics service etc. Furthermore, the platform integrates inventory, local shipping and order fulfillment features, to organize seamlessly the payment process. Financially backed with over €1.1 million, including €661K secured in 2020, StyleHub is here to make your idea the next global fashion brand.
TrustChain – Winners of the Global Startup Awards 2020 in the Best Newcomer category, TrustChain has developed a secure digital contracting platform, assisting companies with automated client identification, contract-making and trade financing, significantly reducing the time spent on administrative and daily legal activities. Founded in 2018, and financially backed by Hiventures with over €1.2 million, the company closed 2020 with 2500 registered users and more than 12 000 documents signed on the platform.
Banzai Cloud – Banzai Cloud (founded in 2018) specializes in deploying cloud-native applications securely, at scale, and in production. Their suite of open source tools reduces friction in the development, deployment, monitoring and management of cloud-native applications hosted in Kubernetes (K8s) environments. After just three years of operations, in November 2020 American multinational technology conglomerate Cisco acquired the company, as it matched perfectly with Cisco’s vision to fuel cloud-native connectivity.
Livlia – Founded in 2017 in Budapest, Livlia is hoping to digitize the entire real estate brokerage process. If you want to sell, rent or just advertise your property, Livlia is the place to go. The proptech startup helps homeowners with advertising their property as quickly and efficiently as possible. Some of the features they offer include advertising in 80+ portals, pre-screening of candidates, and access to Livlia’s consultants. Furthermore, customers can track online what pricing strategy the Livlia system is proposing to them, as well as who is interested in the property. The startup raised a seed round amounting to €1.4 million from Bonitás Ventures and Andgo Partners in 2020 to amplify its reach.
Talentuno – Technology is reshaping the landscape of talent attraction and HR, and new ways to identify talent are appearing constantly. Talentino, for example, uses the power of people and personal recommendations to identify talent. Launched in September 2018, Talentuno is a crowdfunding-based recruitment platform that allows users, called MatchMakers, to recommend their acquaintances for new jobs, and earn significant amounts of commission in the case of a positive recommendation. The platform has already made over 3,000 matches, paying several million HUF to MatchMakers as commission.
Salarify – Founded in 2019, Salarify has created a fintech solution to maintain the wellbeing of your startup employees. How does it work? The startup’s platform allows employees to get access to their earned, but yet unpaid, wages instantly. By giving employees this financial freedom, startup founders can help them reach their goals, ease their financial stress to get a more motivated, productive and loyal team. In 2020, the team landed around €209K to bring its solution to more companies.
Omnicoach – Omnicoach (founded in 2018) offers a game coaching platform designed to improve gaming skills by automatically giving tips after analyzing gameplays. Using AI, the player will receive his/her performance analysis, hands-on tips and tailored strategies on how to master the game. Beyond that, Omnicoach helps brands connect to their fan base and monetize their engagement. For example, they can organize auto-tracked missions and challenges on gameplay videos, offer gifts or coupons to quest winners or create their own branded coaching practice kit. The company’s latest funding was raised in June 2020, a €1.3 million seed round from Bonitás Ventures and OXO Labs.
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!