20. Quill

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Founder: Ed Bussey
Founded: January 2011
Website: www.quillcontent.com

It was whilst building online clothing retailer Figleaves.com that Ed Bussey came up with the idea for Quill – he realised that online businesses needed to focus on content, not advertising, as a genuine way of engaging their customers and helping them to make purchasing decisions. There are, of course, many publishers out there willing to create content for a fee, but most are limited by the size of their workforce. Quill’s unique solution is to call on a huge pool of talented freelancers across the globe to create on-spec content for websites, allowing the company to take on huge volumes of work.

The Quill platform now comprises more than 2,500 ‘content creators’, taking in writers, editors, graphic designers, photographers and video producers, with the quality of their output vetted by a combination of human editors and built-in automated quality control systems. The start-up has now produced content for more than 80 clients – including LA Fitness, Shop Direct, STA Travel and Reckitt Benckiser – and its unique model has almost unlimited potential for growth. Following £5m recent investment, Quill plans to target Germany and China as its first international markets over the next year, as well as rolling-out a new white-label Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) version of the platform soon.

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