Meet, the Commerce Class of 2019: 11 startups poised to shake up the Commerce industry as we know it.

Meet, the Commerce Class of 2019: 11 startups poised to shake up the Commerce industry as we know it.

01-Feb-2019 by Tasneem Hooghart

Disruption is the ‘New Normal’

Set to the backdrop of pervasive computing, hyper-competition and rapid technological advances, disruption has become the new normal in business. Naturally, the world of Commerce is in evolution as well, where the consumers of today expect a more convenient, personalised and ‘omni-channel’ experience, whatever the product or service may be. The industry is represented by a world of brands engaging seamlessly with their target consumers across every, single, touch point. From e-commerce to brick-and-mortar, to social media, and every other channel you can think of, players in the industry are all striving to create encounters worthy of today’s highly digital customer.

Navigating the new normal: Startupbootcamp’s (SBC) 2019 Commerce Program

Following the E-commerce program (2017), and Commerce program (2018), Startupbootcamp is now ready to kick off its 2019 edition of the Commerce program. It’s going to be all about fuelling collaboration between the established brands and the disruptives. Ernst Hoestra, (who led last year’s Commerce program), will once again be supporting the teams as Managing Director. Drawing from over 25 years of experience working with corporates, startups and investors, he’ll guide the new cohort of ventures in their 3-month acceleration journey.

“I’m really excited about this new cohort, as they represent many aspects of the transaction and commerce value chain. Not only have we been able to attract the best e-commerce companies, but we’ve also engaged with more advanced ventures from all over the world. We have already seen from Selection Days, that the power of the ecosystem will really enhance and accelerate the teams. I’m looking forward, together with the Startupbootcamp team, to kick-starting the program!” Ernst Hoestra, Managing Director, Startupbootcamp Commerce 2019 Program

A look back at the scouting season

In the quest to find the best startups for the program, the scouting team went through 5 months of intense scouting. 22 scouting events (held in 16 cities across Europe, with a new addition to the tour – Dusseldorf and Kiev), led to an important crossroads: Out of the 4500+ teams analyzed and over 400 unique applications received, we narrowed it down to 21 talented startups/scale-ups, to join us at Selection Days.

2019 Commerce Selection Days: Hosted in collaboration with PwC

Just like with other SBC programs, where we’ve partnered up to host Selection Days, this time around, we co-hosted the event together with PwC. Their Dutch headquarters in Amsterdam was the perfect location for our intensive 2-day event.

The Commerce Selection Days in a nutshell:

The spotlight fell onto the 21 teams during on 29th and 30th of January. After presenting their solutions through succinct, 1-minute elevator pitches, they each went through 11 mentor sessions where they got the opportunity to gain valuable feedback from over 70 mentors, coming from SBC’s international ecosystem.


“Final selection days always amazes me by the amount of energy that you feel from the startups. The progress that you see them making from day 1 through to day 2, by repeating their pitches to the different mentors, is always a joy to see. The biggest value startups can get from the final selection days is the vast amount of feedback they receive from different people they talk with.” – Marc Wesselink, Co-Founder at TriMix – From Seed to Series A

Plus: Special sessions

To wrap up day 1 of Selection Days, Startupbootcamp Co-founder, Patrick de Zeeuw, gave the 21 teams an insightful keynote on the ‘Biggest Mistakes Startup Founders Make’. Drawing from his experiences over the past 9 years, working with (and investing in) different companies, startups and scaleups, he left everyone with one key takeaway: Building and growing a solid team, is the most important part of any business.

(Check out Patrick’s blogs (part 1 and part 2) on the topic, for a more detailed read).

At the end of day 2, the teams also had a special session with Pitch Master David Beckett. How do you ensure that your ideas have a voice? Everyone in the room definitely walked away with a keener sense of what pitching really means (plus they all got an intro to David’s latest pitch-coaching app: Pitchy)

“Often startups are in their own entrepreneurial bubble, so it’s really good to come here and receive new information on how you can potentially do things better and more effectively. Our main motivation to join Startupbootcamp is to connect to this network of great, inspiring people who can definitely help us become successful with our company! There are great mentors here today, and great startups as well. The value here for us is to take on a new perspective, in what we’re doing, and see how we can improve.” Julie Hotchkin, Founder Eves

Introducing, the Commerce Class of 2019

But of course, the main question of the day was: Which of these startups will make up the Commerce Program’s Class of 2019? After an in-depth deliberation on the evening of January 30th, the jury made their final decision: 11 startups were selected to join the program, which kick-offs at the end of February.

Congratulations to all the teams! 

Discoperi  (Ukraine) – Discoperi develops AI to solve main challenges in automotive, advertising, FMCG and insurance industries, by applying innovative recognition technology for image, voice and persons.

Eldurado (Germany) – Digitizing procurement processes for indirect goods with inorder – inorder maps all procurement processes simply, modularly and digitally.

Epiqur (Turkey) – Epiqur provides live streaming solutions with HQ audio by its integrated hardware and software.

FWDpay (Netherlands) –  Enabling others to transact via SMART Direct Debits.

High Profile Club (UK) –  A Tech PR platform that connects entrepreneurs with the media. (UK) – is a universal mobile payments platform meant to allow the world to utilise its money in any shape or form with any conceivable entry point or application.

Vimma (UK) – Vimma is an AI-enabled platform that allows marketers to use individual’s social media posts as high-performance social ads.

Ubique (Italy) – BIT DELIVERY – Anywhere, everywhere.

Waitrr (Singapore) – Waitrr is a mobile ordering and payments platform that creates a seamless dining experience for guests and increases profitability for restaurant partners.

Weareeves (Netherlands) – The first social beauty network. Less filters and more honesty, share real beauty secrets with friends.

Stripo (USA) –  Drag-n-Drop and HTML email template builder for individuals, teams and SaaS.

For a full list of the 21 companies that were part of the Selection Days, read our press release.

For a pictorial look back at the best moments of our Selection Days, click here.

What’s next?

Starting 27th February, these 11 hand-picked teams will go through an immersive, intense and exciting 3-month acceleration program. What will this entail? Mentorship from our world-class network of entrepreneurs, top executives and industry experts, funding of €15K, free office space, as well as support from Startupbootcamp’s local and global partners. These 3 months will culminate in the class of 2019’s Demo Day event on May 28th, where the teams will pitch their solutions in front of hundreds of investors, mentors and press.

Keep up with our latest updates from the program, and our startups, by following us on all our social media channels: LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook.


Marketing & Content Lead