22 startups that will make you happier according to science
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Finalists at Seedstars World's 2015 competition. Photo Credit: PR

Here, we analyze how Seedstars World finalists address Maslow’s pyramid of human needs

Seedstars World

Everyone with a basic course in economics, psychology, or pretty much anything that requires a theory of how human behavior works, has encountered the Maslow Pyramid. It’s five levels that explain what a human needs to be happy, healthy, and productive. Any good B2C startup caters to needs on one or more of these levels. We’ve taken a look at our Seedstars World regional winners from 2014, and identified on which level they are able to make you happier and why.

Physiological level

This level covers the fundamentals of breathing, water, sex, sleep, and food. And speaking of the latter, eFishery makes sure your supply of fish is more sustainable with its fish feeding management system.


Security issues and health are on the second level. Resources play a big part of this as well, be it natural or professional.

When it comes to keeping your home safe, place your bets on Lumkani, a low-cost in-shack heat detector that rings and sends a signal to neighboring devices and alarms the firefighters. To make sure that emergency ambulances reach you in time, use Nairobi’s OkHi, which geolocalizes users without formal addresses, a serious problem affecting 4 billion people worldwide.

On a technical side, security is a big issue for both Brazilian startup Ploog and Beirut based Ki. The former uses its flash drive based software suite to safely store your data and allow for a desktop on the go, while the later is an enterprise mobile app that eliminates the need for usernames and passwords.

When it comes to natural resources, check out Nigeria’s Green Energy, a zero pollution process that converts waste into clean petroleum oils and gases. The startup won Seedstars World’s Most Innovative Startup Award and is now looking to raise $400K in funding. Down under, Australia’s GoFar monitors driving efficiency with a unique hardware device.

If you’re looking at how secure your money is, make sure to transfer it with African FinTech startups Beam and Remit. While Beam uses Bitcoins to offer a large range of financial services (pay utilities, insurance, and of course, transfer money), Remit is the more classical mobile money transfer system aimed at lowering transfer costs.

If you’re looking for a job, try Santiago based FirstJob.Me. The online platform connects fresh college graduates looking for their first employment with top corporations seeking fresh talent.

Love and Belonging

Community is an essential human need and one lots of startups are seeking to fill. It deals with respect from others and finding common interest to fit in.

That’s why it’s no surprise that Krowdpop and its avid community are in this category, with the world’s first concert crowd funding platform dedicated to K-pop. To make sure you stay connected in the first place, use Singaporean startup 6Degrees, a self-updating private phonebook, which updates your details on your friends’ phones remotely, and allows you to discover mutual friends and places.

As always, communication is key for true belonging. With its state-of-the-art system that allows hearing impaired individuals to communicate with others by translating sign language into voice and text in real time, KinTrans is making this possible. The Dubai based startup is only a few flight miles away from Jordanian Feesheh, the first musical instrument e-commerce platform in the Arab region. With its increasing community of new and experienced musicians, it’s quickly making a name for itself in Jordan and beyond.


Personal esteem includes all needs ascertaining to fun and making your life easier or more entertaining. And what better way to be entertained than with LATAM startups like The Other Guys and Machina Wearable Technology. The first is a mobile/social games studio creating immersive, episodic and story-driven “interactive series” aiming to become the Netflix of social games, while Machina is building the next generation in wearable technology, turning your body into the ultimate immersion controller.

If you like surrounding yourself with nice things for heightened self-esteem, however, try Iranian V-Decoration. The  mobile application uses Augmented Reality (AR) and helps users best fit their selected furniture with the environment of their choice: This is to ensure your new sofa looks perfect in your apartment. Just make sure said sofa stays clean with Washbox24, Asia’s #1 laundry store, thanks to an easy locker and software system.


The top of the pyramid is about going beyond yourself and striving for a better, more refined version of yourself. For many, this means learning new things or pursuing new interests.

At Seedstars World, we found plenty of EduTech startups that help you do just that. One of our top startups Sololearn may be from Yerevan, Armenia, but its biggest fan base is in the U.S. thanks to its unique modular system that lets you learn how to code for free. For larger institutions, myVLE provides online courses and web based seminars to help you advance professionally. And if you need some extra motivation, try Tokyo’s Studypact, an EduTech tool that lets you bet on whether you’ll achieve your goals.

However, at Seedstars World we also know the best way to learn about yourself and the (startup) world is to travel. Vietnam’s Triip is the perfect startup for that task because it offers unique local experiences and tours via its crowdsourced platform.

Happier Yet?

While you’re out and about, just try using some of these startups for a happier or more productive experience. Personally, I’ve already signed on to Krowdpop – never underestimate the power of a community that loves themselves some Super Junior.

This post was originally published on Seedstars World

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Nellie Horn

About Nellie Horn

Nellie graduated from University of Mannheim with an Economics Major and has lived in the USA, Germany, and Spain. After part being of the Deutsche Bahn’s Investor Relations team, she specialized in Innovation Management. Nellie has gained expertise in many aspects of the R&D process, thanks to her multi-million euro project assistance at the Helmholtz Centre Berlin, co-authoring a publication on German cities’ innovative behavior at the Center for European Economic Research, and working at the pioneering SAP Innovation Labs, where she also co-founded the Young Women in IT program. At Seedstars World, she pairs her financial experience with tech savvy while organizing the 2014 tour and searching for the world’s best entrepreneurs and startups.

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