The success of Nordic crowdfunding platforms has made them look abroad. That is good news for Nordic entrepreneurs.
In 2014, crowdfunding campaigns in the Nordic countries raised 128 million euro in financing, increasing with 36 percent from 2013. Although no estimate has been made for 2015, there are reasons to believe that the growth in crowdfunding financing has continued the growth trend shown over the last four years.
The members of the Nordic Crowdfunding Alliance (see facts on the right) raised a total of 8,7 million euros through their crowdfunding campaigns in 2015, a significant increase from the 4,7 million euro the raised for their campaigners in 2014. The Alliance allows campaigners to run their campaigns on a Nordic level through the partner platforms, instead of just running local campaigns.
This could increase the chance of success and may result in bigger contributions, which is good news for Nordic entrepreneurs who struggle with financing.
– In Europe, we now see crowdfunding surpassing venture capital as a source of early-stage entrepreneurial financing, says Rotem Shneor, project leader of the Nordic Crowdfunding Alliance.
Shneor was speaking at the annual Norwegian Crowdfunding Event in Oslo, hosted by Alliance member Bidra.no, where crowdfunding campaigners, startups, entrepreneurs, backers, investors, business angels, community members, fans and critics met to discuss the position of crowdfunding in Norway.
Internationalisation and equity growth
The increasing success of Nordic crowdfunding platforms have led to several of them looking abroad – one of the most important crowdfunding trends in 2015 according to Shneor.
– Finnish crowdfunding platform Invesdor have entered the UK market and are about to deploy in Denmark, Sweden and Norway. Iceland-based Karolina Fund is involved in bringing crowdfunding to Slovenia through a local partnership, and Sweden-based FundedByMe is reporting activity in 30 countries, Shneor said in an email prior to the event.
This is good news for Nordic entrepreneurs seeking financing through crowdfunding, as it broadens their campaigns' audiences, increasing the chance for crowdfunding larger amounts of financing.
Shneor also highlights that the Danish government is the most proactive when it comes to reinterpret laws and frameworks, and that although the interest for running crowdfunding projects in the Nordics is increasing, the Nordic platforms face increased competition from international platforms like Kickstarter.
Shneor, a professor at University of Agder, believes we will see an increase in equity crowdfunding campaigns in the Nordic region in the years to come. Equity crowdfunding means that the backers are buying a small share of the company running the campaign or get a share of its revenue or profits.
Frederik Waitz from Nordic Innovation speaking at the Norwegian Crowdfunding Event 2016.
Nordic Innovation have funded the Nordic Crowdfunding Alliance through the Nordic High Growth Entrepreneurship Initiative, aiming to overcome some of the main barriers that prevent Nordic entrepreneurs from scaling.
Through the Nordic Partnership for Entrepreneurship and Finance lighthouse project, we also work with internationalisation and entrepreneurship, for example through the #NordicMade initiative and the Nordic Innovation House in Silicon Valley.
The best Norwegian campaigns
In addition to several interesting keynotes on crowdfunding experiences and possibilities from people like Irene Tordera from the European Crowdfunding Network and Lauga Oskarsdottir from United Influencers, the event also picked out the best Norwegian crowdfunding campaigns in 2015.
Winners were picked in six categories:
 EY-Cambridge (2015): Moving Mainstream. The European Alternative Finance Benchmarking Report. URL: http://www.ey.com/Publication/vwLUAssets/EY-and-university-of-cambridge/$FILE/EY-cambridge-alternative-finance-report.pdf