31 May HOT May Nordic/Baltic Tech News, Events and Opportunities
Hello all and Welcome to our May newsletter…
🍂 Spring is in the air and as ever, things have been pretty hectic around here with ongoing startup/scaleup programmes in Denmark and Finland, our participation in several events, (in fact, in the spirit of networking and cross border co-operation we even brought the two together this month – more about that later). We’ve got some exciting news too, returning to London Tech Week with our first post-covid event in June, so stay tuned.
First up, it’s your final chance to join Cohort 2 of our “Helsinki Female Tech Founder Frontrunners” international mentoring programme. You’ll have to be quick as Launch event is TODAY May 31st – If you want to apply, do so right here, right now. DONT MISS THIS GREAT OPPORTUNITY!
CONGRATULATIONS to the amazing tech founders who have been selected for Cohort 2 of the programme running from June to November: Karen Lynn Ching Carter – Founder – Pathways, Eunice Hammond-Mørklid – Founder. Inno-Sci, Mila Koshkina – Founder – Flockin, Ania Levinzon – Co-Founder – ReadAbility, Laura Hellqvist – Founder & CEO Fennorr, Becky Luoma – Co-founder & CEO – Language Clubhouse, Annu Kostiainen – Co-Founder & CEO – Neulos, Sienna Kruk – Founder & CEO – Ouna, Katrina Wendel-Mitoraj – Founder & CEO – SOENIA® by BrainCare, Inga Rikandi – CEO & Founder – MusicUs Digi, Mridula Muraleedharan – Founder – Infitrade, Joanne Hylin – Founder, Raila Lassila – Founder – Valued, Weizel Gulfan – Founder – Our Everyday Wellness, Suvi Syrjäläinen – Co-Founder & CEO – Kodarit, Blen Hailu – Founder – Kotibet and Krista Paloheimo – Founder & Development Director – Bulky. We can’t wait to get started with the mentoring by Finnish and international mentors, peer-to-peer support, business skills training and access to our global network to hel our founders launch, grow and scale their businesses over the next six months. A huge thanks also to our many partners who have, and continue to support the programme.
“WOMEN IN TECH” COMMUNITY. LATEST NEWS…
May has been a full-on month, with high octane inspirational sessions in Finland and Denmark. As ever, we’ve been blown away by the level of engagement and dedication of those taking part and our speakers and partners, without whom none of this would be possible. Thanks to you all.
STOP PRESS: HUGE congrats to the amazing founders who have made it through the competitive process and been selected by four independent judges for our Cohort 3 Accelerator for High Growth Potential Tech Companies led by Women. They were all unbelievably impressive! Ahead of them now lies an intense 6m accelerator programme. The founders are; Kathrine von Grumbkov, Bodil Biering, Paula Pectu, Jannike Borg, Rikke Vallentin Stoltz, Lisa Ritter-Petersen, Catharina Christiansen, Elizabeth Boye, Mia Negru, Mie Bøgh Arildsen, Marie Lommer Bagger, Inga Stein Burgaard and Shakila Shaheen.
A big thanks to the judges: David Wurgler, Partner, Magnusson; Irfan Goandal, Partner, Promentum Equity Partners; Lone Vilstrup, Director, KPMG and Louise Judge, Director, Funderbeam.
Further modules in Denmark this month have included Accelerator Interactive Workshops on “Scaling your Operations: Leadership & Team,” “Lessons on being an Inspiring Leader”, “What do I need to raise for what – by when?”, “International Sales/Scaling your sales process” and “Does it matter that I am a woman? If so, how do I navigate that?” which was led by our own Tech Nordic Advocate Chair, Stine Bosse.
On the Bootcamp front, we’ve once again been awed by the engagement and energy displayed by all involved in a series of sessions that has included “Gotta Sell to Grow: Interactive session on powerful selling”, “Thinking bigger, moving faster” and accelerator sessions like “How to organise your Marketing without any Marketers”, ”Legal aspects of expansion to other EU markets” and others too numerous to mention here.
Still in Denmark, there’s nothing we like more here at TNA than hearing about the success of entrepreneurs we’ve had the privilege of helping along the way. High fives all round then to Vera Reshetina and Evgenia Bereziuk and the team from Workee who announced that supermarket chain ALDI has become their start-up’s 2,000th customer! We’re proud to have you on our #accelerator for high #growth potential #tech companies led by women. And here’s to the next 2,000!
On a similar note, huge congrats also to Julia Gebert, whose start-up, Rysta, picked up 1st place in “Best Start-up” category and 3rd in the category “Best environmental project in Berlin”, at the Smart Home Deutschland Awards in the German capital. Julia, who’s been on our accelerator course recently, started Rysta in Denmark, before moving to Germany. The company specialises in indoor climate monitoring in schools and offices.
This month also saw another step forward for our growing organisation when we virtually teamed up our Denmark and Finland cohorts for a session on “Think Canada for your North American Expansion!” The session covered an “Intro to Canada’s ecosystem players and partners,” “Establishing a business in Canada,” and a case study on DecideAct, a Bornholm-based cloud-based strategy execution solutions provider that has recently opened an office in Canada. It was an exciting exercise for all of us and once again, thanks everyone for taking part.
HELP FOR UKRAINE
Here’s a question. Do you know any refugee children who have recently arrived in Denmark? If so, perhaps Poikilingo can help. Aimed at kids 2-6 years old, Poikilingo helps kids learn Danish via an app with games, interactive books and music videos. The company was founded by two women who were part of #TNA Women in Tech mentoring program Cohort 1. They’re offering their app for DKr1 for 6 months, to 1,000 refugee children. It can be downloaded at https://mla.bs/631be9e6. Spread the word!
One of the most commonly cited challenges faced by start-ups is the amount and complexity of legal issues that can be time-consuming and expensive. It can also be a reason for businesses to fail. Addressing this issue, lawyers Olga Beck-Friis and Kira Unger founded Pocketlaw in 2018. They offer a SaaS platform for creating and managing legal contracts that simplifies the entire process. The founders estimate that their customers save up to 14 working weeks and up to $200,000 in legal fees each year by using their solution. Investors seem to agree and PocketLaw has just raised an injection of over €10 million in a round led by Atomico.
Congratulations this month to Finnish tech-driven holiday platform provider Bob W who, on top of raising €10 million in seed funding last year, continue their growth with the acquisition of their largest competitor in Estonia Estonishing Stay. The purchase will significantly increase Bob W’s presence in Estonia and other markets are now on the horizon for the company which is looking to take on the might of Airbnb et al. With the help of an app, the company sources and manages accommodation as well as offering contactless online check in. Wondering about the name? Bob W is a wordplay on the phrase “best of both worlds.”
Barely a year after being founded, crypto start-up Januar has raised €6million in what is one of Denmark’s largest ever seeding rounds. The company has set out to support a more open financial system based on decentralised technology by offering fiat-to-crypto rails as a service. It’s an area where Europe lags behind the US, so this is seen as a step in the right direction this side of the Atlantic. The seed round in this case was led by Element Ventures, backed up by several well-known angel investors, and with the funding in place, they’re now ready to launch crypto-friendly financial services for businesses across Europe.
When it comes to tech start-ups, perhaps we more spontaneously think of software. However, Norwegian e-paper tablet makers reMarkable have raised eyebrows as well as investment having announced this month that they have sold over one million units of their budget product since 2017. The success of the tablet, which retails at €299, has led to reMarkable being valued at $1 billion and last year reported operating profits of $31 million in 2021.
NEWS FROM THE BALTICS
Congrats to Lithuanian fintech start-up kevin. after securing over €61 million in its bid to shake up the payments sector. Founded in 2018, with a mission to offer payment solutions that cut out the middleman, the Vilnius-based start-up provides a payments infrastructure accessible via an API. This gives businesses the opportunity to accept payments directly from banks, cutting out the card networks, which makes the process cheaper and more convenient. The company has grown rapidly since founding and now numbers some 170 employees. They have recently started offering their services to point-of-sales terminals in shops and with the new funds secured they intend to expand into new markets with an ambition of doubling in size. Watch this space!
STARTUP OF THE MONTH!
With an aging population facing much of Europe in the coming years, the issue of care is going to become an increasingly hot topic. Looking to revolutionise the sector and inject some much-needed technology is Finnish start-up Helppy. Founder and CEO Richard Nordstrom started the company when he was having trouble finding support for his elderly mother. His hunch proved to be smart and led to the formation of a start-up that provides a platform that automates tasks related to care giving, such as cleaning, nursing and other chores. There is a social side to the platform too, providing much needed company for those in need.
London Tech Week is returning post-Covid and is just around the corner. It’s not too late to sign up and join the 20,000-plus delegates and 300 top-level speakers in what promises to be a huge, inspiring event. On June 16th, we’re hosting our very own event, bringing diverse Nordic businesses to London to pitch to top London investors at our “Scaling Diverse and Inclusive Tech Businesses Internationally” event in partnership with and hosted by our partner London Stock Exchange. The event will run from 12-6pm with a special ‘Market close” session followed by networking drinks. Don’t miss this great networking opportunity! Event is nearly full. If you want to join, message us HERE
IMPORTANT INFO FROM OUR PARTNERS TO SUPPORT YOUR GROWTH
Netcompany is a pure-play IT services company delivering business-critical strategic IT projects that accelerate customers’ digital transformation through digital platforms, core systems and infrastructure services.
We were delighted this month to see the coverage and promotion of Netcompany’s partnership with TNA. You can read the full story here. The article, which features an interview with our CEO Jeanette Carlsson looks at what we do at TNA, and the importance of partners like Netcompany, as we work together in supporting the next generation of female tech entrepreneurs.
Are you ready to take on greater responsibility and develop your career at Netcompany? Read more here.
“Climate neutral”, “environmentally friendly” and “net zero emissions” – marketing messages we come across on an almost daily basis, but like any other marketing messages they have to strictly comply with the Marketing Act, meaning that they have to stand up to close scrutiny. In Sweden the laws have been updated this year meaning it is more important than ever for companies to ensure they have the correct advice before publishing advertising materials. Magnusson has lawyers specifically trained in this area. To find out more, contact Helena Rönqvist at Magnusson.
Interested to learn more about Crypto and Blockchain?
TNA members 4ire Labs are our go-to experts when it comes to all things to do with blockchain.
May has been particularly busy month at 4ire Labs. The company completed a Сarbon Credit Marketplace project https://4irelabs.com/cases/carbcoin/, partnered up with Suncrypters https://suncrypters.com/, a blockchain marketing studio that delivers full-cycle marketing for P2E, DeFi, NFT, IDO/ICO projects.
And finally 4IRE launched a new service for Smart Contract Audit offering a full security check-up for blockchain products. You can read all about it here – https://4irelabs.com/smart-contract-audit/
IN THE PRESS
Congrats to our very own Jeanette Carlsson, who has been rated among London’s top 28 most successful and impressive CEOs in association space byBest Startup UK, that tracks over 130,000 UK start-ups and more than 500,000 people in key posts. Jeanette and the others were recognised for their excellence in a series of categories, including innovation, growth, management and societal impact. Read morehere.Well done boss!
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 investorsfrom 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.
OR COULD YOU DO WITH A LITTLE HELP FROM A FRIEND?
💡 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
And still we grow! Another hectic month of expansion for us here at TNA, saw no less than three (count em!) new launches. Tech Florida Advocates, led by Luis Novella and Maryem Sader, launched on 10th May at the Alan Levan Center for Innovation in South Florida. Tech Berlin Advocates launched on 12th May at Lakestar’s Berlin office, led by Matthias Engel, and finally Tech UAE Advocates, led by Omar Hassan, was also soft launched on 26th May with a virtual event (with a more formal launch planned in October in Dubai). Welcome to all and we look forward to working together with you.
Remember: Tech Nordic Advocates is the Nordic/Baltic arm of Global Tech Advocates (GTA) – the world’s only global tech/startup ecosystem spanning 22 global tech hubs.
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.