Point Nine Land
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Point Nine Land

7 insights from an international VC on the Nordic tech scene

#1 Stockholm is still leading the way but other cities are catching up

Source: H1 2017 numbers were calculated based on several articles published on thenordicweb.com [1–11]. Snow Software’s $120 million round was not included as they are majority-owned by buyout fund, neither Unity’s $400 million round as they are headquartered in the US.
  • Sweden accounted for 62.3% of the total funding amount raised in the Nordic countries with $634.2M in H1 2017.[1-11]
  • $1.4B was invested in Stockholm in 2016 and accounted for more than 1 in 3 investments which occurred in the Nordics.[12]
  • The percentage of funding rounds with a minimum of one international investor in Sweden was 14.4% compared to 19.3% for the Nordics as a whole in Q2 2017[2,11], showing that even if Sweden is more mature and attractive to international investors, it is not so easy to compete with local players there.
  • Denmark accounted for 11% of the total funding amount raised in the Nordic countries with $111.8M and Finland for 14.4% with $146.1M in H1 2017.[1–11]
  • Looking at the number of investments per city, there were 132 deals in Stockholm, 48 deals in Copenhagen,17 deals in Malmo, 28 deals in Gothenburg and 32 deals in Helsinki in H1 2017.[1–11]
  • In 2016, Malmo attracted $101.8M i.e 15% of the total amount raised in Sweden in the same year not taking into account Spotify’s $1 billion debt financing.[13] Notable investments in 2016 in Malmo include Min Doktor, Mapillary and Neo Technology.
  • Norway accounts for 10.8% of the total funding amount raised in the Nordic countries with $109.5M and Iceland for 1.6% with $14,75M H1 2017.[1–11]

#2 Software is eating the Nordics

Source: Creandum; Nordic Tech Exit Report 2016
  • The verticals with the highest number of investments are 1) Enterprise SaaS with 45 deals i.e 12% of all investment made during that period 2) Fintech with 41 deals 3) Health and Wellness with 40 deals 4) Entertainment with 23 deals 5) Gaming with 22 deals 6) Retail with 21 deals.[1–11]
  • The top investment vertical in Sweden during H1 2017 was Fintech with 27 deals i.e 60% of all Fintech investments in the Nordics, Enterprise SaaS in Denmark and Norway with respectively 14 deals and 8 deals, Health and Wellness in Finland with 7 deals.[1–11]

#3. Smaller ecosystems have stronger communities and are doing a great job at supporting international investors

#4. Waiting for the next success wave

Source: Creandum; Nordic Tech Exit Report 2016

#5 Work/life balance matters

#6 There is a lot of public money

#7 There are many great events to attend and accelerators/ incubators / co-working spaces to hang out

  • Copenhagen: Tech Festival & Tech BBQ
  • Malmo: Nordic Next (invitation only)
  • Stockholm: Stockholm Tech Fest, Sting day (invitation only), Nordic Startup Awards Grand Finale
  • Oslo: The Shift
  • Helsinki: Slush, Arctic 15
  • Copenhagen : Founders House, Founder.as
  • Malmo: The ground, Mink, Fastrack Malmo
  • Stockholm: Sup46, Sting
  • Oslo: Mesh, Startup Lab
  • Helsinki: Startup Sauna



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Savina van der Straten

Savina van der Straten

Impact Investor @POV, previously @Point Nine Capital — Interested in AI for good