Such is the ubiquity of the word ‘startup’ that nine out of ten startups are likely to be described as “disruptive”, whether they truly are or not. Disruptive businesses are those that aim to change the status quo in a sector, ruffle a few feathers and bring about a new norm. Whether you like the term or not, disruptive businesses startups are the drivers of change.
Over the years, there have been some famous examples of disruptive businesses. Netflix has completely revolutionised the way people consume broadcast media, killing off video and DVD rental stores and prompting people to cancel their TV subscriptions. Skype is another well-known disruptor, allowing those who used to rely on expensive international calls to chat for free.
The thriving startup scene is a hotbed of disruptive businesses. They contribute £196 billion annually to the UK economy alone. In this article, we’re going to look at four ethical startups that are disrupting their sectors and changing them for the better. Some Disruptive Startups are discussed below.
One of the latest startups business ideas to emerge from London is Dropless, the mobile car wash service that saves over 150 litres of water per wash, reduces harmful runoff and revolutionises the way we wash our cars.
The aim of the business is not just to reduce the environmental impact of vehicle washing; it also wants to do something about the human cost. Car wash slavery is rife in the UK, with estimates suggesting that as many as 24,000 car wash workers are being exploited or working as modern slaves.
Dropless is taking steps to ensure that its workers receive extensive training, have access to suitable clothing and receive fair pay, bringing the commercial car washing sector firmly into the 21st century.
London-based WeFarm is an example of a disruptive startup in the agriculture sector, showing that absolutely no industry is safe from disruption. Described as ’agtech’, short for agriculture technology. WeFarm is building a network that connects small-scale farmers. And allows them to easily access quality products. And services and non-agricultural items from trusted brands.
Smallholder farmers lose a lot of time and money due to faulty and fake agricultural products. WeFarm solves this problem by building a network of trust that those farmers can use to buy products and ask for recommendations.
One area that’s seeing significant disruption in the world of women’s health. Elvie, another London startup, recently rais the large fintech investment ever for its range of products that designers to improve women’s lives.
As CEO Tania Boler explains, “Whether it’s menstruation, pregnancy or menopause, women’s bodies have been shrouded in taboo for centuries. We know so many issues of womanhood can improve by technology. And there is so much potential in this space.”
The startup’s products to date include a silent breast pump and a pelvic floor trainer. However, with the £32 million series B funding Elvie recently raised. We can look forward to seeing many more products in the future.
In just three years, the green energy supplier Bulb has stolen more than 750,000 customers from established firms such as British Gas and E.ON, as it singlehandedly disrupts the UK’s £54bn energy market.
With a commitment to low prices, good customer service and 100% renewable energy. The bulb is not reinventing the wheel. But it gives customers a fresh alternative in the market. That is known for treating its customers poorly.
The fact that Bulb can compete with such wealthy and establish competition is testament to just how attractive renewable energy is to many customers. But also to how complacent the so-called big six energy suppliers have been.
True Disruption is a Gamble
These startup business ideas might give you a distorted view of how successful disruptive businesses really are. The truth is that doing things differently is risky. Even with a good idea in place. There’s no guarantee that the new technology or way of doing things will take hold. However, as these five startups have shown. The rewards are well worth the risk – you just have to hope that you’re one of the lucky ones!
Here are a few tips to help you promote your startup on a budget.