Entrepreneurs in the United Kingdom (UK) are at the forefront of innovation in the sharing economy. It’s no surprise, then, that the UK sharing economy is growing at the fastest rate in Europe, with transactions doubling from £3.9 billion in 2014 to £7.4 billion in 2015.
Let’s meet some of these sharing economy entrepreneurs, whose platforms provide services that each change portions of our everyday lives.
Sebastian Steinhauser – CEO & Founder of Parcelly
Working as an investment banker with long unsociable hours in the office meant Sebastian had to rely on e-commerce for his shopping needs. Frequently facing the hassle of missed deliveries, Sebastian found himself wasting hours trying to reschedule deliveries, only to then being forced to collect parcels from a remote delivery depot.Sebastian founded Parcelly with the vision to eliminate missed parcel deliveries for good, putting full control in the hand of users by allowing them to pick up their parcels at convenient click&collect locations. Recently, Sebastian was announced the “Service Industries Entrepreneur of the Year 2016” at the Great British Entrepreneur Awards for his vision to revolutionise the first and last-mile delivery sector. Sebastian was keen to ensure that Parcelly’s business model would have a positive environmental and social impact, and donates 5% of every parcel booking to Atmosfair, supporting the fight for a cleaner planet.
Kim Antoniou & Tarryn Gorre – Co-Founders of Kafoodle
Kafoodle was created by Kim and Tarryn as a way of helping commercial kitchens remain compliant with FIR Legislation, whilst simultaneously helping diners find restaurants that meet their dietary requirements. Kim’s extensive background in software, combined with Tarryn’s passion and knowledge of the hospitality industry, led them to work together on a mission to make dining as safe as possible. Kafoodle is an award-winning menu management system, that allows commercial kitchens to suitably manage their allergens, nutritional information and costings of their menus, and has recently launched a new labelling feature that has already won an award for its innovation. They even offer a mobile app that allows diners to search and filter through restaurant’s menus to match their dietary requirements. Listen to them talk about Kafoodle and their vision for improving food safety.
Chaz Englander – Founder & CEO of Fat Lama
Chaz and his team have created an online marketplace that allows users to monetize their everyday belongings by loaning them out on request. Humorously, Chaz and his partners were inspired to create Fat Lama while building a coworking space in London. They didn’t have some of the necessary tools for building, and had a tough time finding equipment to borrow. Fat Lama acts as a source of passive income for users with items they would otherwise leave in storage, while providing the borrowers with much-needed items that would be too costly to buy outright. Chaz believes that Fat Lama will serve as a veritable ‘digital inventory’ for items that people don’t use too often. He plans to bolster a macro trend in the sharing economy that is making us view ownership more collectively. In his spare time, Chaz also hosts Fat Lama’s Sharing Economy Toolkit Podcast.
Nivi Jasa – CEO & Founder of onPony
After a visit to the dentist in Turkey, Nivi was forced to ask a friend to bring him pain relief medicine only available in Italy. This incident inspired Nivi’s vision for onPony: a service that to make international deliveries easier, more affordable, and environmentally friendly. OnPony simultaneously provides the ‘Ponies” with extra income and safely delivers customer items across at a cheaper rate than traditional mail services. Nivi is also a filmmaker and has a background in graphic design – check out some of his work!
Freddy Macnamara – CEO Founder of Cuvva
Freddy and his team formed Cuvva in response to the increased global demand for streamlined, bespoke insurance. Cuvva is much faster and more flexible than traditional insurance companies, and is the only provider in the UK to sell insurance via an app and by the hour. Freddy came up with Cuvva out of frustration that he couldn’t borrow a friend’s car for a short period of time due to a lack of insurance coverage. He realized that infrequent drivers represented an insurance gap that he could fill with a service that provides pay-per-use insurance. Freddy wants to challenge traditional, inflexible insurance companies by creating an alternative for people who aren’t getting the most out of their annual plans.