The first year of Russia’s aggression against Ukraine proved to be incredibly challenging for millions of people. Many Ukrainian startups have demonstrated unprecedented resilience and resolve to adapt their business and expand operations despite enormous challenges.
We’ve compiled a list of 10 notable startups worth paying attention to thanks to their innovative products or recognition from investors, international media and strategic partners.
Ella Toothbrush designs and produces personal care products, made of paper and therefore plastic-free and totally recyclable materials. The company attracted investments including $150,000 from 500 Global in a tight fundraising environment and relocated to Silicon Valley.
We Do Solar
Launched in February 2022, this startup manufactures vertical solar power panels that can be rather easily installed on balconies, contributing not only to moving away from fossil fuels, but also to independence from Russian oil and gas. Just a year since the creation, We Do Solar ships to 24 countries and reports thousands of orders.
Clever Fleet is an online platform for US-based employers to hire Ukrainians to manage paperwork, salaries and other administrative services. Under the slogan “Work with Ukraine. Safely” it managed to gain traction as a payroll platform provider, offering access to the workforce in a war-stricken country despite the challenges of the war. It aims to expand its talent pool to Poland and other countries.
V-Art is a blockchain-based platform for digital art creators, collectors and other art market professionals for making transparent deals and secure payments and property rights. During the war, the company’s revenue increased fivefold, which will definitely help its ambitious expansion plans this year, including raising money from investors.
Esper Bionics is a producer of hand prosthetics composed of nearly 300 components and through movable machinery, aimed to make the user’s life much easier. In late 2022, a depiction of the hand prosthetics made the cover of TIME magazine, which included Esper Bionics’s product in the list of 200 innovations that are changing our life.
airSlate is a Boston-based, Ukrainian-founded startup that helps automate document workflow through a no-code solution. In the middle of 2022, the company attracted $51.5 from investors which values airSlate at $1.25 billion.
Made with Bravery
Made with Bravery is a marketplace that sells craft products made by Ukrainians and gets the products delivered across the world. Created just after the start of the war, it’s worth watching it as a model that can be replicated in other similar cases such as natural disasters.
Preply is an online language tutoring platform, which connects over 32,000 language tutors with students worldwide. The company raised a total of $50 million in investments to date, with its revenue growing fourfold during the last four years.
DressX allows users to “dress” themselves up online – “wear” clothes in their metaverses or “putting on” digital clothes on their avatars and themselves during online streams, etc. With robust sales, it was also featured in key media like Vogue and CNN and got investments from Warner Music.
Unstoppable Domains provides domains for blockchain and cryptocurrency services such as .nft, .wallet, .x, which can be also used as usernames or logins. In 2022, it raised $65 million from 19 investors, which valued the company at $1 billion at the time when its top managers were regularly hiding in shelters because of airstrikes.