Over the past 10 years, consumers have sharpened their awareness of what they buy: where it comes from, who made it, how it impacts the environment. To small and medium-sized enterprises, this represents both challenge and opportunity. Consumers may be more willing to try a new or niche product, but they will scrutinize its value and efficiency closely. In response, many traditional sectors have seen disruption as the new SMEs bring fresh ideas to market, often using smartphone technology to reach their audience, from a twist on the venerable flower industry in Amsterdam to a homework app in Hong Kong.
These short films explore SMEs from the inside, following the crucial daily processes that are taking the companies towards their longer-term goals.
Founded by former retail broker Ben Pugh, Farmdrop bills itself as an 'ethical' grocer, delivering food direct from a network of small-scale producers within a 100-mile radius of their delivery hub. It has offices in London and Bristol.
Founded in November 2014, this newcomer to the traditional Dutch flower industry has 100 employees. It set out to tighten the supply chain from grower to customer, delivering fresher flowers to subscribers, who pick the flower arrangement of their choice from the Bloomon website.
Founded in 1993, this technological centre specialises in nutritional management of crops, improving outcomes for sustainable agriculture.
Established by co-founders Rafic Daud and Gonçalo Henriques, Undandy offers handcrafted, bespoke men's shoes to customers worldwide. Drawing on the expertise of third-generation shoemakers, in 2017 it was finishing on average 1500 pairs of shoes per month.
Started by a wetsuit specialist who noticed the rising popularity of triathlons, Huub now supplies wetsuits to world-class triathletes and is looking to break the US market.
Founded in 2015, this tech start-up connects schoolchildren and students who pay to have access via their phones to a vetted network of tutors who can remotely offer help. It has raised $23m in funding to date and operates in Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Japan and Korea.
A ride-hailing service run by women for female passengers only. Since it launched in 2017, it now has some 14,000 drivers in Sao Paolo and is looking for investment to expand further into Latin America.