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Nordic Innovation stresses the importance of scaleup companies at Almedalsveckan 2018.

Foto: Nordic Innovation / Simen Strand Jørgensen
  • Published 03/07/2018
"There has been much focus on startups. Now it is time to focus on scale-ups", CEO of Nordic Innovation, Svein Berg states.

With megatrends such as digitalisation, green transition and automatisation, our economies are bound to change. The Nordic Council of Ministers, the Nordic Council, the Embassy of Lithuania to Sweden and Nordic Innovation joined forces in Almedalsveckan 2018 to discuss the future competitiveness of the Nordic and Baltic regions.


In the Nordic tent in Visby, many came to listen to Daina Klepone (Managing Director Enterprise Lithuania, Svein Berg (CEO, Nordic Innovation), Micaela Rosenlew (Head of Nordic operations, SLUSH), Pyry Niemi (Nordic Council) and Mantas Zalatorius (President, Lithuanian Bank Association) discuss the issue.


It is pivotal that we build competitive and sustainable industries that will allow us to maintain our welfare society. Both the Nordic and Baltic start-up scenes are thriving, however, few start-ups grow to become companies that significantly contributes to the national economy.


“We have a very good grassroot network in the Nordics. If you need help you can get it and it is easy to get started. The tricky part is to scale your business. How to take it further after the first round. What are the right ways to take? There is a lack of knowledge,” Rosenlew states.


Berg agrees, “there has been much focus on startups. Now it is time to focus on scale-ups,” he says.



We know too little about scale-ups


We know too little about the needs of scale-ups. 


“Scale-ups need a different type of help than startups do. In the Nordics we do not have that many scale-ups which we can learn from,” Rosenlew explains.


This mirrors that situation in the Baltics, moreover many say they are hesitant of starting companies as they are scared they are not going to be able to scale. “There is still a fear of failure in the Baltics,” Klepone tells.


Scale-ups are high-growth companies, but how do we know if a scale-up is successful?


“It is very important to talk about how we measure success. Is Spotify a success? They are not making any money,” Mantas said.



Creating a Nordic scale-up ecosystem


Nordic Innovation has initiated the Nordic Scalers program, a pilot program designed to help high-growth companies to prepare and accelerate their next stages of growth through an access to long-term competence building and cross-border networks. The objective is to make the Nordic region a leading region to scale companies.


“We need more knowledge about how to help scale-ups. That’s why we have a started Nordic Scalers program to learn about these companies and create a Nordic community for scale-ups,”  Berg says.



More about scale-ups at Almedalsveckan 2018

Nordic Innovation is hosting a half-day event on scale-ups together with Breakit on Wednesday 4th of July. Amongst the speakers are people behind scale-ups themselves such as Niclas Adalberth (Klarna and Norrsken) Saeid Esmaeilzadeh and Ashkan Pouya (Serindipity Group) and Tuva (Nordnet). For more information about the event, click here. 


For more information about Nordic Scalers, click here.