10 Utrecht-based startups to follow in 2021 and beyond

In the beginning of this year, we introduced you to 10 super promising Netherlands-based startups to watch in 2021. Since Amsterdam is already highly popular as a startup city, today we decided to have a closer look at Utrecht, which recently also made it into our annual ranking of Europe’s biggest startup hubs

From medieval canals and bikes traversing streets to architectural icons, such as the Rietveld Schröder house, Utrecht is a city full of life, and startups! With support from organizations like UtrechtInc, StartupUtrecht, Holland Startup, the municipality of Utrecht, and the Economic Board Utrecht, the city has become an up-and-coming startup ecosystem.  

For this article we’ve scouted 10 promising startups from Utrecht that were founded between 2018 and 2021, taking into consideration signals like team size, funding situation, growth rate, and product/market innovation. Here comes our selection of 10 Utrecht-based startups watch in 2021 and beyond.

Orbisk is a fully automated, AI-powered food waste monitor for professional kitchens, optimizing profitability and sustainability. Founded in 2018, Orbisk is on a mission to make the world food system more sustainable by using progressive and innovative technology. Their integral solution provides hospitality organizations with a complete insight into their food waste. And by doing so help them cut their waste by 50%. To do this, Orbisk combines recent developments in computer vision and AI. The team has raised a total of €1.5 million. 

Scotty is an intelligent virtual voice agent that automatically handles in- and outbound customer contacts and business processes, end-to-end at a large scale. Born in 2018, the Scotty platform handles all conversation-driven business processes from start to finish, enabling seamless channel and language switches easy and smooth for all customers. Scotty builds relevant and contextual customer journeys with existing data and provides back real-time insights. With Scotty, businesses are able to leverage Conversational AI against the highest and fastest possible value and value to the market.

De Clique provides an innovative waste management solution by collecting separated organic waste streams such as coffee grounds, cuttings, and food residues from companies and catering in urban areas in a CO2-neutral way. Founded in 2019, De Clique helps its customers to separate the flows, and ensures that after three months 70% of the residual flows can be used as raw materials for new products. Some of the products are sold back to De Clique’s customers, creating a hyperlocal circular chain, in which raw materials from the city form the basis for new products for the city.

Red Kubes is the creator of Otomi, a Kubernetes-based operating system that works out-of-the-box to support the most common DevOps use cases. Organizations can securely build and run containerized applications. Founded in 2019, Red Kubes has raised over €1.2 million to provide a value-added layer on top of Kubernetes to create a stable, secure, and reliable platform experience. The Utrecht-based startup aims to increase developers’ productivity, regardless of the underlying infrastructure, and make working with Kubernetes a true point-and-click affair.

SyncVR Medical was founded in 2018 and is on a mission to improve healthcare with its all-in-one Virtual Reality platform. The SyncVR Medical platform makes it possible to implement VR throughout the hospital: from hardware, software, and workshops to appointments with the support services and a hygiene protocol. SyncVR has a large library of VR apps for healthcare, including tailor-made VR experiences. Within their online dashboard, customers have real-time insight into the use of all VR glasses in their institution and it is possible to link an EPD.

HUSTL was born in 2020 and is an online media platform for young entrepreneurs. Inspiring content and stories, valuable information about the start and growth of their business, and a free online community that helps them with all their questions. Their ‘Knowledge’ section is a home base for Hustlers with How-Tos about starting and growing a business, and definitions of difficult terms in the Hustler Dictionary. In addition, with ‘The Toolkit’, users can indicate their goals and access a selection of action points to achieve that goal. Hustlers also have access to a library with books, films, and podcasts to help them grow their businesses.

Smiler was founded in 2020 and is a spot photography marketplace that connects photographers and customers in tourist hotspots and other leisure destinations. Smiler believes that valuable memories deserve to be captured in high quality, making their mission to achieve that on a global scale for everyone, everywhere. Photographers can sign up for free and make money working when and where they want. For businesses, Smiler connects photographers to venues such as zoos, festivals, theme parks, beach clubs, museums, cruises, stadiums, and more.

brainbay is the platform for insights and data-driven services for the Dutch real estate market. Founded in 2018, they provide the real estate market with the best data and information products through an extensive database with information about homes, commercial real estate and agricultural companies. Brainbay develops information products with which customers obtain insights into the functioning of the (local) real estate market. Brainbay enriches data, developing tools that make property data accessible. They use technology, including artificial intelligence, and combine it with the knowledge and experiences of property experts.

Learned.io is a platform with tools for performance, career, and learning management, helping companies grow by empowering their people to do their best work. With the Learned platform, companies can create a continuous dialogue between manager and employee with attention to goals, skill development, and career perspective. Learned.io was founded in 2018 and provides employees with insight into the skill gap with their current position and next step. Employees receive personal learning suggestions for skills to be developed, and managers have better development conversations with their employees, resulting in up to 280% more engaged and productive teams.

Brainial provides intelligent software to help organizations reduce the time, resources, and money spent when responding to tenders, achieving higher quality, win rate, and profitability. Founded in 2019, Brainial’s Tender Document Analyzer automatically reads, extracts, and presents all the key elements and risks found in tender documents. Brainial puts all requirements, risks, and bid indicators in one clear view. The Tender Risk Analyzer identifies and ranks all requirements and risks, and matches each with the organisation’s capabilities and data from historical tenders.

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!