London North Eastern Railway (LNER) is set to work with five global startups to accelerate new projects in an effort to improve rail travel in the UK.

These projects are part of LNER’s innovation programme, LNER FutureLabs.

LNER invited the startups to pitch their pioneering ideas in the areas of More Journeys, More Often, Personalised Customer Experience and Responsible Business.

A total of five successful start-ups were selected by the panel following two consecutive pitch days with startups worldwide.

LNER chief digital and innovation officer Danny Gonzalez said: “It was fantastic to hear from startups from as far away as North America and the Middle East about how they would apply their innovative approaches to the UK rail industry.

“There was tough competition, but we have selected five startups that will now move onto the next stage of the accelerator programme and to see some of the ideas start to come to life. They certainly have the potential to make a real difference to the lives of our customers, communities and colleagues.”

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QikServe from Edinburgh will help deliver an ‘at seat’ personalised customer experience by using its digital self-service experience.

Based in Middlesbrough, augmented reality-based company Skignz will look at ways to create a personalised mapping and information experience for customers at and nearby LNER stations.

Barcelona’s iomob will aim to encourage more people to travel by train using technology that supports better mobility.

In addition, Berlin-based startup Green City Solutions will work to provide clean air and healthy spaces for customers as part of LNER’s Responsible Business plan.

Through advanced systems management, Sirenum will also look at the area of Responsible Business.

The five start-ups will receive access to LNER’s live operational environments from next week, in addition to one-to-one mentoring from senior team members as they develop their proof of concepts. A demo day in central London will follow in September.