London Stock Exchange Elite programme adds "flying bum" creator Hybrid Air Vehicles, Boris bike light maker Blaze, fintech firm Nutmeg and parenting site Mumsnet among 17 startups in latest cohort

Lynsey Barber
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LSE's Elite programme identifies fast growing companies (Source: Getty)

The company behind the "flying bum" airship and a tech startup whose lights now appear on Boris bikes across the capital are among 17 companies to be selected for the London Stock Exchange's accelerator programme.

The LSE Elite programme provides support to high-growth small businesses including access to investors.

Hybrid Air Vehicles, the maker of the Airlander airship nicknamed for its anatomical resemblance and which plans to IPO, along with London cycling startup Blaze will be joined by fintech firm Nutmeg and hugely popular digital parent network Mumsnet.

Read more: Meet 26 of the hottest UK startups about to become household names

"These scale-up companies are absolutely crucial for the future prosperity of the UK economy, innovating and creating well-paid, high quality jobs in all parts of the country," said outgoing BEIS committee chair Iain Wright.

"Helping companies scale up for growth has to be an essential part of any business policy for the next government, ensuring that companies can grow to last for the long-term. LSE's Elite programme is helping companies do just that."

Previous members of the programme which number more than 100 since it started in the UK in 2014, with combined revenues of £1.6bn and employing more than 12,000 people. They include Naked Wines, the online wine seller snapped up by Majestic Wines for £70m in 2015, snack company Graze and the mini computer Raspberry Pi.

Companies on the LSE Elite programme open the markets

More than 500 international companies have passed through the scheme, which started in Italy in 2012, boasting a combined £35bn in revenue and 180,000 jobs.

Head of the programme, Umerah Akram, said it was "a clear demonstration of the country’s ability to grow great businesses".

Read more: Meet the 33 tech startups set for stardom

“Elite is committed to giving the British business stars of the future the very best chance to succeed, providing them with access to appropriate expertise and capital. It is a unique, strong community of the best and most dynamic entrepreneurs, advisers, investors and business school academics from the UK, Europe and around the world,” she said.

Company Location Sector
6t9 Norfolk Engineering
Beezer Belfast Technology
Blaze London Hardware and equipment
Ergonomic Solutions Kent Technology
Hammersmith Medicines Research Limited London Medical Research
Hub Productions Kent Technology
Hybrid Air Vehicles London Engineering
ISG London Financial Services
Mumsnet London Digital
Nutmeg London Financial Services
OpenGenius Cardiff Technology
Pavement Testing Solutions Lancashire Industrial Services
Profile Financial Solutions Preston Financial Services
The NWH Group Dalkeith Industrial Services
THESQUA.RE London Travel
Via Developments Manchester Property
V-Nova London London

The firms will also be eligible to join the LSE's new private placement platform to give it access to funding from institutional investors.

The Elite Club Deal hub will connect the businesses with the likes of BlackRock and Fidelity as well as private equity firms and family offices. The platform itself is powered by London fintech startup The Hub, an alumni of the programme.

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