Telefonica sees its Wayra UK companies receive record levels of investment

Wayra cohort record investment levels

The figure raised this year is more than 50 per cent of the total amount raised by all the startups that have enrolled in Wayra’s company building programme over the last three years.

Total investment in Wayra UK companies now stands at just over £40 million and the attraction for companies to be part of the unique incubator is clear with them receiving combined contracts with Telefónica worth £3.4 million.

In return for an equity stake, Wayra gives startups up to $50,000 (£33,000), a place to work, mentors, business partners, access to its network, and the opportunity to reach Telefónica customers.

Startups currently in the Wayra programme include the likes of invoice app Albert and Scottish startup Little Riot, which is currently trying to raise capital on Kickstarter for its device that allows couples in long distance to relationships to hear their partner’s heartbeat as they fall asleep.

new innovation models

Gary Stewart, director of Wayra UK & Wayra UnLtd, said: “Corporates that want to avoid being disrupted are eagerly seeking new innovation models. Telefónica was at the forefront of this movement, and it’s great to see that the results are now beginning to speak for themselves.

“What’s even more pleasing is that this isn’t restricted to any one country. Qudini, for example, came through Wayra UK and has now been selected as our preferred queue management solution in stores across 17 countries.”

Wayra UK’s demoDay being held this week will see 19 new companies enter into its new 2016 cohort.