30 Apr HOT April Nordic/Baltic Tech News, Events and Opportunities
Hello all and Welcome to our April newsletter…
🍂 Spring is in the air and there’s a spring in the step for those of us in the tech industry and here at Tech Nordic Advocates especially, on the back of another hectic month that saw the continuation of several of our successful programmes across the region, plenty of events, and even the odd party or two (never a bad thing to catch a networking opportunity).
Mixing work and pleasure, we kicked off April in style with an event to celebrate International Women’s Day, in Copenhagen, in partnership with KvindeKompagniet. Thanks to our speakers Josefine Volqvartz, Director, Kvindekompagniet; Astrid- Simonsen Joos, Board member; Lisbeth Nedergaard, Director, Kreab, Sam Jalaei, Chairman, Magnusson, and to Mikkel Rørvig, Director, Mikkel Nielsen, Partnership Manager and Nordea Startup & Growth for hosting us. It was a well received event, judging by your 4.7 out of 5 feedback score, and a great chance to celebrate all amazing women – mums, sisters, daughters, wives, aunts and of course female tech founders and leaders.
STOP PRESS. LET’S CELEBRATE!
And with those glasses still aloft, there’s no harm in a little self back-patting every now and again, so we’re really excited to share that we have received a grant from the US Embassy in Denmark to help those of you with expansion to the U.S. ambitions understand how to make it happen AND been shortlisted for the same in Finland. Hopefully, we can bring some good news next month 🤞🤞🤞!
Alongside our continuing programmes in Denmark and Finland, we’ve been busy supporting key events in April, including our friends at STHLM Fintech Week. It was, as ever, busy, inspiring, entertaining, exhausting, AND hugely appreciated by everyone we spoke to.
But time waits for no man, woman or tech entrepreneur as the old saying goes, so let’s take a look back over April and forward to the many activities we have in store.
ACCESS TO THE UK MARKET .. (POST-BREXIT)
First up, a big thanks to all our partners who helped us pull together a variety of programmes in April in Denmark and Finland. The British Embassy in Copenhagen kindly played host to our Denmark Accelerator ‘ Access to the UK Market’ workshop. A big cheers to James Gordon-Orr from the British Embassy for helping to put a great programme together; Christina Schiøtt Liaos Nordic and Baltic Director Department for International Trade (DIT), Chris Moore, Technology Specialist Department for International Trade (DIT), Olivia Brooks Solicitor at Bates Wells, Miriam Ducke Director Europe at London & Partners and James Service, Marketing Manager at Goodwille.
On a similar note, April also saw the PRE- Accelerator Bootcamp Cohort 2 take place in Denmark….
As always the energy was high, ideas creative and results positive, with sessions that included interactive workshops on Breaking into new markets as well as an Access to the UK market masterclass. Thanks again to those taking part and our partners
Very excited ahead of the final 2022 Cohort (3) Bootcamp of our International Accelerator for High-Growth (potential) Tech Companies Led by Women, kicking off Monday 2nd May. With the accelerator itself running from May 30–December 2.
In Finland, we’re alive and kicking with ‘Helsinki Female Tech Founder Frontrunners’ – our international mentoring programme for female tech founders offering hands-on high impact support, mentoring and skills training along with access to our global networks. We’re pleased with the strong feedback to date, so don’t miss this great opportunity to get involved if you’re a woman keen to launch and grow a new/your existing tech business. HURRY UP AND APPLY TO COHORT 2 HERE.
Massive congratulations to Swedish parcel storage operator Instabox, that reached 🦄 ranking this month on the back of a $190m growth round. The deal, which makes Instabox the best-funded private parcel locker start-up in Europe, follows a Series B injection last year that valued the company at €700m.
Currently operating some 4,500 automated parcel boxes, along with fossil fuel-free home deliveries in Sweden, Norway, Denmark, the Netherlands and Germany. The latter is poised to be a focus for growth for Instabox on the back of the latest funding round.
Still on e-commerce, this time in Finland, Upsy Company, a start-up helping smaller businesses grow has received a €1.2 million injection to help grow its business. Essentially the Helsinki-based company’s SaaS-based solution for digital retailers is designed to turn more visitors into purchasers, by helping potential customers reach a decision to buy.
Only founded in 2021 the company has seen rapid growth, with a product the company itself say acts like a human salesperson, turning e-commerce visitors into buyers. With more and more small businesses going digital, the ultimate aim, with the help of the latest investment led by Gorilla Capital, is to challenge the likes of Amazon and become a global leader in the shopping assistant category
The champagne corks were probably also popping at Finnish SaaS specialistONEiOin April, following the news of a €7.2m injection. The Helsinki-based start-up has developed a cloud-based integration platform that provides service providers and internal and external IT with an easy way to collaborate between customers, vendors, suppliers, and subcontractors.
The new funding, which was led by Swedish vc Fairpoint Capital along with previous investors Inventure and Tesi will go towards expanding ONEiO’s offering into Central Europe and North America.
WHERE’s THE MONEY? IT’S RIGHT HERE
It’s been a big month at Danish start-up FocalX, which has pulled in a multi-million DKK for its AI-based car inspection platform.
FocalX is a new innovative tech platform which, through machine learning and artificial intelligence is able to identify, classify and evaluate exterior car damages,” said founder Isabella Agdestein.
The solution is developed to set a new market standard for the manual processes associated with the car hand-over from one person to another. It’s FocalX’s ambition to create the world’s most transparent and objective method for car inspection using AI tech.
The latest investment, from family office Lottrup & Co and business angel Roeland Hofkens, comes on the back of a previous DKK 550.000 injection from various Danish funds, including the InnoFounder programme.
In Norway meanwhile, we were pleased to hear about a successful month for e-commerce start-up Outshifter. In April, the Oslo-based company completed a €1.2 million funding round that will help its expansion plans and increase a list of partners that already includes big hitters like food delivery firm Wolt, publishers Egmont and other e-commerce players.
Founded in 2019, Outshifter’s platform’s single API standardises and synchronises product data between the supplier’s commerce systems and sales channels that include online stores, media outlets, apps and marketplaces, creating, what they call a more level playing field for all and the chance for customers to expand their online distribution.
NEWS FROM THE BALTICS
The more the world becomes digitalised, the greater the need for security. Apparently over 30% of people are expected to use a VPN at some stage this year, putting privacy as well as security high up on the agenda. In response, the demand for protection services is extreme, so perhaps it is little surprise to see Lithuanian-based Nord Security reach 🦄 ranking on the back of an April $100 million funding round, which values it at $1.6 billion.
The company, which has forged its reputation with its NordVPN product is expected to use the cash injection to expand both its consumer and business offerings. Those behind this latest funding round included Novator, who have helped Deliveroo, Stripe and Tier among others, Burda Principal Investments and General Catalyst, as well as individuals including Ilkka Paananen of Supercell, Miki Kuusi of Wolt and Matt Mullenweg of Automattic.
START-UP OF THE MONTH
Are you one of the many electric car drivers frustrated by the continued difficulties of charging your vehicle? Perhaps the Monta app can help out. Loosely dubbed Airbnb for electric vehicles, the Danish company built on the sharing society idea to form a network of charger owners, both private and small businesses, whereby you can find the nearest charger available, agree a charging price with the owner and simply plug into their socket. So if you’re a small company with a charger that is rarely used in the evenings for example, here’s an extra revenue stream, likewise for homeowners during the day. Founded in 2020, the company has grown from its Denmark base into Sweden and the UK, where they are hoping to see a particular growth spurt in the coming years.
Co-creating the future of Sustainable Urban Food Logistics, 31 May, Helsingborg
Interested in food-tech and sustainable food logistics – ‘smart food with AI?’, come join this interesting workshop as part of the H22 City Expo Helsingborg programme. More info and how to register HERE
London Tech Week 2022 13-17 June, London
As we begin to reacquaint ourselves with live events post-Covid, London Tech Week 2022 is one of the most hotly anticipated running between 13-17 June in London (of course!). The five-day event is expected to pull in some 20,000-plus visitors, who will be treated to a raft of top-level speakers, along with start-up competitions, networking zones and live streamed talks. We’ll be right there on June 16, with our very own ‘Scaling diverse and inclusive tech businesses internationally”, courtesy of and hosted by our partner London Stock Exchange and in collaboration with our Tech London Advocates sibling and our Global Tech Advocates family, spanning 25 global tech hubs and over 25,000 tech leaders. Focus is on helping diverse and inclusive tech businesses scale internationally and so – as you would expect – we’re bringing a diverse delegation of founders to London to pitch to London and international investors and partners. Want to join us, drop us a line HERE
IMPORTANT INFO FROM OUR PARTNERS TO SUPPORT YOUR GROWTH
Here at TNA, there’s little we enjoy more than hearing news of the success of our partners.. And with that in mind, our congrats go out to Sam Jalaei, partner and Co–Head of Corporate M&A and Head of Capital Markets at our legal partners Magnusson Denmark. In April, Legal 500, one of the leading independent international legal directories EMEA launched its 2022 rankings for Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Sam has been included in this prestigious list, which is picked following extensive research featuring more than 15,000 companies across the region. What more can we say, except congratulations on your well-deserved success Sam!
Still on Magnusson, our partners have worked closely with FocalX founder Isabella Agdestein (see earlier story), and also in April, the company assisted online booking service Book Salon Oy, by reviewing investment agreements and preparing corporate law documentation in connection with an investment injection of some €3 million.
Magnusson Denmark have also entered into a partnership with children entrepreneurship enabler Go Zebra, a non-profit organisation formed in 2019 that aims to inspire, equip and empower kids aged 9-13 by getting them involved in entrepreneurial activities. Read more about this exciting collaboration here
Meanwhile, our blockchain and NFT expert partners 4ire Labs have been busy doing what they can to help out with the ongoing conflict in Ukraine. The Swedish/Ukrainian start-up has created the platform #StandWithUkraine where people can make contributions and help Ukrainians in several different ways. You can donate to the Ukrainian army, send humanitarian aid, buy NFTs or just share information on the platform, which you’ll find here. Meanwhile, if you want to buy an NFT, go here.
Eyes up, Danish start-ups or early growth companies looking for an extra push. Our partner, KPMG is arranging a global competition for tech innovators (Global Tech Innovator), on 22nd June.
With this competition KPMG wants companies to pitch their innovative concepts and products and present their strategic ambitions to a panel of local and international industry experts. This gives them the opportunity to be recognised as one of Denmark’s most innovative and successful teams of technology entrepreneurs. Interested? Be quick then, applications close on May 2. Find out more details here
FROM US…. RAISING CAPITAL TO SUPPORT YOUR GROWTH?
💰 Did you know we offer a Start-up/Investor Scouting Programme, connecting fundraising start-ups/scaleups with suitable investors from our network? If you’re a start-up/scale-up raising funds, get in touch here. If you’re an investor looking for deal flow, please email us for an introduction.
💡 Could a Mentor help you? Did you know that we offer a global mentoring programme matching our Advocates with mentors across the globe from our Global Tech Advocates network, spanning over 20 tech hubs globally? Join today (Solo membership or Business Membership) and get access to top quality mentors across all continents, who can help accelerate your growth.
GLOBAL TECH ADVOCATES (GTA) NEWS
It goes without saying that huge steps have been taken over the past decade or so to redress the diversity imbalance so prevalent in the tech industry, but the major message that came from the Tech for D&Iversity event in London was that there is still plenty of work to do. The event attracted a raft of top-level speakers, with messages of support from top UK politicians like Nadine Dorries and Mayor of London Sadiq Khan among many others and proved to be thought provoking, deep dive into the question of why diversity is still a challenge in our sector, and what can we do about it. You can read a full report, including the advocates survey here
Our network stretches a long, long way. Tech Nordic Advocates is the Nordic/Baltic arm of Global Tech Advocates (GTA) – the world’s only global tech/startup ecosystem spanning 25 global tech hubs. And our tentacles are getting longer by the month. So we’re delighted to announce the addition of three newbies in May.
- Tech Florida Advocates led by Luis, launches on 10th May
- Tech Berlin Advocates led by Matthias, launches on 12th May
- Tech UAE Advocates launches on 26th May (with a more formal launch in October in Dubai)
Did you know we have our own global tech news hub? Check out GTA Connects
If you are interested to expand from the Nordics and Baltics, into the UK, or any other 20+ places globally in our Tech London Advocates & Global Tech Advocates network, reach out to us at Tech Nordic Advocates for an intro.