2 March 2018Comments are off for this post.

5 reasons why nearshoring in Poland is valuable for the Nordic companies

The Nordic tech industry is expanding each day. No wonder, technology is playing a significant role in this region, both in private and professional life.

We are seeing more and more startups being founded in the Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Norway, and Iceland. More ideas are being born in the heads of young entrepreneurs, which are being supported by a significant inflow of venture capital.

But the technology is not only related to the young Nordic companies. Digitalization has become a more popular “word” in many large corporations, who are making sure to follow current technological trends to keep ahead of their competitors.

So, you have a vision for your new project and products. But who will build it? Well, developers of course, but then a much more significant problem starts to appear - How can you find them?

According to the Hays Global Skills Index 2016the Nordic region is facing a serious tech talent shortage. For example, Denmark is expected to fall short of 19,000 IT professionals by 2030.

Finland currently has an immediate need for 7,000 software developers, and according to the Finnish Information Processing Association, the country will lack over 15,000 skilled professionals by 2020, causing about €3-4 billion in lost GPD per year.

And let’s not forget Sweden. Statistics Sweden estimates there will be a shortage of 30,000 engineers by 2030 and it has already outpaced the USA as the country with the highest labour market stress level.

Based on Hays Global Skills Index 2016, Statistics Sweden and Finnish Information Processing Association

 

Developers in the Nordic region are becoming a scarce resource, and most companies are already feeling it. So how can we face this challenge? One word comes to mind: Outsourcing and more specifically Nearshoring. Recently published Whitelane Research about outsourcing in the Nordic Region states that the appetite for outsourcing is growing - over 44% of respondents plan to use this service more.

Still, as a Business Developer at Setapp from Poland, I constantly communicate with clients from the Nordics and some of them still hesitate to nearshore their development to Poland.

Let me provide you with the most important benefits of nearshoring in Poland:

1. Poland has the most talented developers in the world

According to the Hacker Rank Polish developers are in third place in the global ranking after China and Russia. Considering how large those two countries are, achieving such a result is a huge success. I recommend reading the whole Hacker Rank article because it also provides a detailed ranking of the Best Developers by domain. Polish programmers also dominate various other areas.

It makes sense to develop your project with the best, right?

hacker rank

2. Possibility to obtain professional expertise based on industry experience

When an idea for a product is born, then you probably ask yourself the question: How should we build it to make it successful? Poland is becoming a major European Tech Startup Hub and more successful companies are being born there from industries like FinTech, IoT, Travel, Media, E-sports, Healthcare and more. This confirms that Polish developers know how to create meaningful software and they will be sure to make your product successful too.

3. Talent supply

Remember at the beginning when I mentioned how Nordic countries are facing a severe tech talent shortage? 70.6 K, is the number of  IT students in the 2013/2014 academic year, according to GUS (Central Statistical Office in Poland). Polish tech universities graduate over 15,000 new specialists annually.

More students are aware of the benefits of becoming a developer, so their motivation to learn programming languages is increasing. As a result, the number of well educated IT professionals are growing. It gives the potential outsourcing partners the possibility to gain access to such a valuable talent pool.

4. Communication and cultural fit

Communication and a good cultural fit are one of the leading concerns of many Nordic companies who seek external help. Poland, Denmark, Sweden, and Norway share the same Time Zone CET, and Finland only has a one hour difference (EET). So there will be no need for evening calls.

Also, developing in SCRUM ensures that you are able to communicate with the development team on a daily basis. Regarding the cultural fit, Poland is an open-minded country with a lot of experience in doing international business, so communication is at a very high level. Moreover, 90% of developers speak English very well and many companies provide English lessons for them.

nearshoring in poland

5. Stable economy and similar law

After the fall of the communism, the Polish economy started to grow significantly. Poland has a very stable economy in Europe. So when you want to move your development to Poland, you don’t need to worry about an economic crisis, political problems, or natural disasters. Poland also adheres to all EU copyright and IP (intellectual property) directives. Due to these updated legal matters, there are fewer risks involved.

Conclusion

You may be surprised why I didn’t mention the low costs. Let’s face it - it is obviously an important reason but these days companies more often put the value of the outsourcing partner over the costs. Having a trustworthy tech partner from Poland who is ready to share his professional expertise can be highly valuable for you and for your customers

Still hesitating? Setapp is currently in long-term partnership with Egmont - one of the leading media groups in the Nordic region. But don’t just take our word for it, listen to what Mads Donkin, Egmont's Product Owner, has to say about cooperating with us:

testimonial egmont

 

 

Since such a well-known company chose to nearshore their development needs, do you agree it’ll help you too?

P.S. while you're here check out our blog posts on the best practices for software development:

 

nearshoting poland

7 November 2017Comments are off for this post.

The rise of the EdTech revolution – an interview with Olli Vallo

2017 will be remembered as the year of the 'EdTech rebound'. After a sluggish 2016 in terms of investments, the global EdTech market has fought back with more than 500 deals expected by the end of the year. One region which is performing exceptionally well is the Nordics. The region is flourishing with many promising EdTech startups making their way up the ladder.

So, who better to get a further insight into the Nordic EdTech scene (in particular Finland) than Olli Vallo from Kokoa Agency. We recently caught up with him at Setapp's inaugural Significant Hackathon, where he was invited to speak and mentor.

How did you start your journey with EdTech?

When I was a primary school teacher, I felt that there wasn't enough content in the teacher's manual and student exercise books to cover an entire lesson. This prompted me to come up with the idea of 'active assignments' which would keep the kids more active and motivated during lessons.

However, planning these assignments required a lot of time and effort from my side. I was spending over two hours on just lesson planning, while the class lasted only forty-five minutes. As I wasn't ready to use my personal time to plan the lessons, I just went with the flow during the classes!

The 'going with the flow' approach didn't really create anything special. The kids were getting frustrated and anxious, and started bullying each other. This made me very nervous as it was a challenge to keep the kids together and motivated to learn.

Eureka Moment!

Then I thought maybe technology could help me. I could use it to give meaningful and activating tasks to the students, as well as track their progress and have them create things using technology.

Since I was a musician, I had the idea for a music app which students can use during their lessons to compose music. I pitched it to some government organisations with my friend and found out that a similar solution already existed. I contacted the company and started to do my PhD research on composing music with computers by using their app to collect data from students.

After publishing my first research article, the company offered me a job and that's how I ended up working in the field of EdTech.

How has EdTech changed education in Finland in the last 5 years?

EdTech hasn't really changed education or the school system in Finland. In fact, we are still waiting for the 'big education revolution'. Apps like Shapes is changing the way students understand geometry. It has the potential to take mathematics learning to the next level.

shapes EdTech app Setapp

Shapes by Setapp

 

Like the Stanford professor of maths once said: " The invention of numbers caused a big revolution in maths."  The invention and use of tablets should be causing a similar revolution in learning maths. Having said that I'm optimistic that the big change is coming soon!

Do you think exposing kids to too much tech at an early age is good for their development?

I'd say too much of anything is bad. Even too much sport isn't good for kids. It's all about finding the right balance between using technology and doing other things.

I used to spend a lot of time in front of the computer, making music when I was a kid. For me 'my computer' was my instrument instead of a guitar or a piano!

kids tech

You can't artificially limit kids 'screen-time' and force them to go outside. You need to make them understand why it's essential to go and play outside and engage in “offline activities”.  They need to understand why it's not good to spend too much time in front of the screen.

What are the most significant changes you've witnessed in the EdTech community in the Nordics?

I'm happy to see the progress made in EdTech in the last five years. Companies have started to realise the true potential of their business by focusing on 'the value' their product will give to the customer rather than just aiming to maximise profits.

They are thinking along the lines of "maybe this could be used in schools" rather than solely planning the product on the thinking "I want to make $'XYZ' money". When you base your product on these values then the quality of the product increases.

Also, I've noticed increased cooperation among the Nordic countries. Initiatives like xEdu, the Nordic EdTech Awards and the Nordic Edtech Network are playing a pivotal role to strengthen this bond further.

How does Kokoa Agency verify EdTech products?

We compare the product against the 'learning sciences'. I've been using this analogy to describe what we do:

"If you are building an aeroplane you will probably look at the laws of aerodynamics and laws of physics to design it, so that it will stay in the air."

Similarly, if you build a learning app, you should be looking at the laws of learning and the learning theories to make learning applications efficient.

Olli Kokoa Agency

Olli Valli examining Mehackit, an EdTech solution

Is it crucial for an EdTech company to verify their product in the Nordics through Kokoa Agency?

I’d say that having a Kokoa Agency certificate is not that crucial. What's important is to provide the evidence that your product offers tangible outcomes in learning.

One way or another you can get the evidence. For instance, you can run long pilots and write a solid case study. This approach works just as well as our certification.

What are some of the most common mistakes made by EdTech startups?

  • Niche offering - The app is too niche! It's nice to have it, but it doesn't change the situation that much.
  • Value for money - If you want to introduce an app to replace books at schools, then it has to as comprehensive as the books (if not more). Why would a school pay 5 euros extra for your app if the books do as good a job as the app?
  • Quality of the application - The learning goals and the purpose for the users are unclear. Often what happens is that startups focus too much on the 'mechanics' of the app rather than focusing on its learning objectives. This is very much evident in the language learning apps where sometimes the emphasis is put too much on 'gamifying' the experience rather than creating content which will actually improve their vocabulary.

What are your thoughts on VR/AR in EdTech?

Immersive technologies like VR and AR bring additional value to the learning experience. You have a whole new dimension on how you can present your content and make learning an exciting experience.

ar vr edtech

Emotions are essential too! We know that emotional engagement can be a useful way of teaching. You learn a lot while watching a movie as it engages your emotions. So, if the emotional engagement is high in VR/AR, you can definitely use them to enhance learning.

Where is EdTech heading in the next five years?

Here are my top 3 predictions for the next five years:

  • Publishers will start producing good quality EdTech solutions for schools.
  • We will see an increase in Startup - Publisher cooperation.
  • The level of digitalisation in the Education sector is expected to rise from the current 2% to 5% during the next five years.

Finally, How was your experience at the Significant Hackathon?

It was awesome! The atmosphere was great and I really liked how Setapp focused on making the event fun for everyone. You often see a super serious competition where no one sleeps and everybody is stressed to win the contest. Which was not the case at the Significant Hackathon.

Many of the participating teams had a good understanding of the learning process. I believe you’ll see the teams producing high-quality pedagogical products in the near future.

 

shapes setapp edtech

25 October 2017Comments are off for this post.

Startups in Denmark – the hidden champions of the Danish startup ecosystem

Denmark is well-known for its world-class design skills, high work standards and well-developed business environment. The Danish startup ecosystem is relatively small compared to the UK, Germany or even Sweden. However, both entrepreneurial spirit and a relaxed style make this small country a pretty unique place to do business.

Take a look at some of the most exciting startups with high growth potential to come out from Denmark.

1. Artland

Artland believes that collecting art should be smooth and straightforward. It aims to provide art collectors with the tools to navigate in a diverse art world. It also offers the possibility to engage with a worldwide community, driven by a shared passion for art.

artland app screens

Artland App Screens, Calendar (Left), User Profile (Right)

 

“Traditionally, the art industry has been slow at adapting to the new digital landscape, but things are changing. The audience of today is more comfortable navigating, discovering, sharing, and buying online, and the time has come for the art world to act upon this.” explains Mattis Curth - the company CEO & Co-Founder.

The Artland app is free for collectors to use. It makes its money from gallery subscription fees. In less than a year Artland has acquired more than 10.000 users in the Nordics and the Netherlands.There are more than 35 galleries selling artwork on the platform.The company has recently launched the app globally and is currently closing the next round of funding.

2. Temply

Temply is an on-demand staffing application that aims to digitalize and disrupt the traditional temporary staffing market. In short, it’s changing the way people work. It connects qualified and available workers with employers and it all happens while handling administrative tasks hassle-free.

Temply app

The company has just released the first version of its service which Setapp had the pleasure of developing. For now, Temply enables users to find the top 5% of temporary workers in Denmark and has an ambitious growth plan.

3. Simplyture

Simplyture automates the entire parking process while digitalizing parking administration for customers and businesses. Its parking intelligence uses license plate recognition to eliminate the need for barriers while creating unparalleled data insights.

Here's what Jonas Ørting, CEO & co-founder, Simplyture had to say about the product.

How it all started?

“Simplyture was born from the idea that parking is boring and annoying. We asked ourselves how can we create the solution that would change people's perception of parking to something that is just nice and fun."

How about expanding globally?

"For now, we’ve built the cloud-based administration platform that makes parking easy to use and we’re starting the global expansion. We’re launching our solution in the UK next month, and in the meantime, we process partnerships in other European countries from Germany to Lithuania.” 

4. Hooves

Hooves is built around making the most expensive sport in the world more accessible by bringing horses into the 'sharing economy' easier. It is driven by the current megatrends of 'mobile first' and the sharing economy, which makes everything around sharing a horse easier.

The app was launched in March 2017 in Denmark. It enables users to search for potential matches, plan and communicate through a management tool. It also insures the horses, the riders, and the equipments. Hooves’ business model has two main components - insurance fees and paid features for premium users.

“We launched the app this year and have validated the idea by receiving very positive feedback, especially for the management tool. Now it’s time to move forward and to launch an improved version of the app and to start global expansion, beginning with a launch in the Nordics.” - Suvi Kaario, CEO & Co-founder, Hooves.

5. Exruptive

Exruptive has developed an innovative solution to optimise both the security and commercial experience for passengers in international airports. The airport industry faces a lot of challenges and needs to re-think and re-engineer the entire value chain from check-in to gate. It aims to create better experiences for passengers and more efficient business solutions for operators and retailers.

Exruptive app

At Setapp we are working with Exruptive to develop a software platform for its 'intelligent trolley solution'. The company has developed a security scanning solution for cabin baggage, as well as chargeable, scanner compatible and context-aware airport shopping trolleys.

6. Studios

Studios’ mission is to change the way people discover and use the variety of fitness and sports possibilities. It provides easy access to many health and fitness professionals while making the whole thing a seamless and welcoming experience.

Studios members can attend a variety of fitness activities in their city with one single membership. The app is currently available in Copenhagen for iOS users, and the Android version is coming soon.

7. ERNIT

ERNIT is the world’s first smart piggy bank. It gives children the confidence to deal with real money in the digital world. Additionally, it harnesses the very latest technology to gain crucial lifelong skills that will never go out of date: earning and managing funds by themselves.

Ernit app

ERNIT’s interactive app and attractive piggy bank make the intangible tangible. Pocket-money chores become relevant. Goals become as much about the journey as the arrival. And giving has a purpose. ERNIT became a Techstars company in 2016.

8. Media Sifter

Media Sifter is a Copenhagen-based startup looking to transform the news media industry by using blockchain technology and crowd validation. The application is a fact-based news platform where investigative journalists and the community work together to help provide the big picture.

Media Sifter app

The platform's news aggregator will be built on top of a community that validates aggregated content through a blockchain-powered user consensus. It will enable users to navigate through the noise and bias of the current media landscape better. The aggregator is set to be launched in beta at the end of 2017.

“The main difference between Media Sifter and its competitors is that we are not currently focusing on the content creation part of the news but aggregating existing content and putting a community-driven layer on top.” says Ezequiel Djeredjian from Media Sifter.

9. Connected Cars

Connected Cars is working on an ambitious project to connect 250,000+ car-owners with their vehicles by hooking into the onboard diagnostics available in every modern car. Connected Cars wish to make driving and owning a car simpler, safer and more sustainable.

connected cars app

Its CEO, Mads Gregersen states “Connected Cars is all about creating connected mobility for 100,000s of users by connecting their vehicles to the cloud, each and everyone else"

Currently, more than 15,000 Volkswagen car owners in Denmark are using the service. The company is fully funded by Semler Gruppen and operates autonomously.

10. Harba

Harba is an international startup that is striving to digitalise how marinas operate. Harba’s primary goal is to make life easier for both sailors and harbour personnel.

Harba app

The app is free and available in multiple languages. Once a sailor requests a berth via the app, harbourmaster receives a notification via  email or SMS and can either confirm or decline it.

This solution is suitable for small, simple marinas, whereas, for larger and more complex harbours, Harba provides a web-based dashboard with customizable modules depending on each harbours' needs.

“We believe that sailing trips should be about sailing, enjoying the sea breeze, discovering new places and docking in great harbors without any hassle, rather than spending time sailing around a full harbour or worrying about how to pay for it.” - Christian Elkrog, CEO and founder, Harba

Wrapping up.

Denmark has a lot to offer its entrepreneurs, so it’s not a surprise that many successful companies like Unity or Zendesk  were born there. It seems that the biggest challenges that Danish startups face are internationalisation and finding enough talented employees to fuel their growth.

We keep our fingers crossed for these startups and their international expansion. These companies have vast potential to write the next Danish global success story. If you know any other promising startups from Denmark, please let us know in the comments section below or email us directly!

 

28 August 2017Comments are off for this post.

Seven Nordic EdTech startups to look out for in 2017-18

Nordics have always been a frontrunner in education, focusing on creativity and collaboration. Although it has seen a steady rise in the number of EdTech companies over the last few years, still the Nordic EdTech scene has recently lagged behind the UK and the US. This is caused by the lack of synergy between startups, investors, governments and other stakeholders.

Initiatives like The Nordic EdTech Network, EdTech Sweden, Oslo Edtech Cluster, xEdu acceleration program are trying to change that by building a Nordic EdTech community. Their aim is to connect individuals, companies, and organisations from the EdTech ecosystem.

Below you can find some of the recently set up Nordic EdTech startups.

1. Citationsy (Sweden)

Do you remember the painful days of writing your dissertation? Or the long hours you spent writing and editing blog posts? If so, you must have faced the dreadful task of providing proper citation & trying not to rob other people’s content. Ciationsy is a tool which helps you cite books, websites, articles and more with just a few clicks.

What’s more, it lets you create and export references in any style you desire and the best part it costs a mere $1/month. Now that’s a bargain for such a handy tool like this one. Kudos to Cenk Özbakır for creating such a helpful tool and making writing less stressful.

Citationsy EdTech

2. Lexplore (Sweden)

According to Shaywitz, co-director of the Yale Center for Dyslexia and Creativity at Yale University, early identification of dyslexia among children can help to reduce some of the reading difficulties they have.

Lexlpore allows you to act fast and identify children with reading and writing difficulties early on which means that schools can intervene as soon as possible.

It’s a simple digital reading ability test consists of three steps:

  1. Children participate in a test which takes just a couple of minutes per child.
  2. The information from the test is uploaded to a cloud-based system.
  3. An AI computer model analyses the information before presenting the final results.

The use of AI and eye-tracking allows identifying children at risk of dyslexia fast and accurately. As a result, it requires minimum effort from schools so that classes can be run as usual.

In 2016 Lexplore won the EdTech Sweden startup of the year award.

optolexia screening recording EdTech

3. BookBites (Denmark)

Not everyone enjoyed reading at school especially when they had to go through a pile of boring texts from a big fat textbook. Then in 2015 came BookBites to motivate schoolchildren to read by gamifying reading and making it an enjoyable experience.

It splits books into digestible and time-based segments called “bites.” The quantity and duration of these segments adapt to match the student’s individual reading level and speed. It lets students track their reading progress and check their reading history or statistics.

Gamification encourages students to read by rewarding them with stars as they read. Teachers can use the app to get an insight into class reading skills and performance.

BookBite is nominated for the best newcomer startup from Denmark for the 2017 Nordic startup awards.

BookBites_App EdTech

4. Peergrade (Denmark)

Another classroom EdTech startup to be nominated for the best newcomer Danish startup for the 2017 Nordic Startup awards. Peergrade solves the problem of teachers to give comprehensive feedback to their students and encourages peer grading among the students which reduce 'time spent' on evaluating assignments.

It also provides quality feedback and encourages critical thinking among the pupils. It is easy as a pie to setup and use, for both students and teachers.

Some of the leading schools and universities including, Byron Public School, INSEAD, Boston University, KTH Royal University of Technology use Peergrade.

peergrade teacher view EdTech

5. 3D Bear (Finland)

This is by far the coolest and the most fun application on the list. 3D bear is a 3D design tool that runs on your browser or tablet and gets you familiar with 3D printing, AR and VR. The mission of 3D bear is:

To help educators create an environment in which students can learn life-skills that will make them successful in the 21st century – to elicit collaboration, improve multidisciplinary skills, develop a growth mindset and creative problem-solving.

With 3D bear, you can design and print your own avatar, learn number sequences and mathematical equations. You can even plan and produce a 3D model of your own room and furniture.

3D Bear was part of the prestigious xEdu acceleration program in 2016.

6. Fun Academy (Finland)

Created in support with Rovio - the company behind Angry Birds. Fun Academy combines entertainment with education to bring a dynamic learning environment. It offers teaching and gamified learning tools for teachers and kids at kindergarten.

Its array of digital and physical products helps teachers to provide kids with a fun and engaging learning environment.
Apart from Finland, Fun Academy has kindergartens in China, Singapore and the US and is set to roll out in Middle-East in 2017.

Fun Academy EdTech

7. Gruply (Norway)

People’s attention span is getting lower and lower each year. Advancement in technology and content overload are the reasons for it. Gruply lets you create bite-sized micro-courses and build an audience in less than 57 seconds.

You can create video stories, capture 3D animations and deliver them to your audience. It lets you share your content on channels like social media, email, SMS, and the web. You can be an influencer by building your community on chats and groups. Although still in beta, you can pre-register for the closed-beta to get an invitation.

As you can see the Nordic EdTech scene is hotting up, and it's only going to get bigger! We'll be closely following the latest development from the Nordics and we will share our thoughts on our blog.

P.S. Here's a piece by Annemarie Glaesel on 7 companies that best describe Norway's startup ecosystem.

 

24 August 2017Comments are off for this post.

7 companies that best describe Norway startup ecosystem

If someone asked you “What are the best startup hubs in Europe?”, my guess is that Berlin or London would be the first ones that would come to your mind and I’m pretty sure none of the Scandinavian capitals would make it to your top 5.

The truth is all of us should keep an eye on the Nordic startup hubs because they are all expanding at a rapid pace. One country which is experiencing a boom in startup activity is Norway. Giving Sweden which is considered a regional 'unicorn factory' something to think about.

Norway's startup scene

According to DNB, Start Us Magazine and The Nordic Web it is the fastest growing startup hub in terms of investments in the Nordics. Norway’s ecosystem is starting to take off and as more companies are getting funded it is getting more exciting. Norway has a strong community support and a friendly environment for entrepreneurs.

Moreover, the government actively supports companies and provides them with training, mentoring and networking opportunities.

Even Crown Prince Haakon who is an active ambassador of the Norwegian startup & tech scene has stated in an interview with the Nordic Web that

there’s been quite a shift in the last 5-10 years, where the whole ecosystem has been catching up” and that Norway will see “quite substantial outcomes in the years to come”.

According to Henrik Grim, an investor at Nortzone, it all comes down to the most important players - the country’s entrepreneurs, who should keep aiming high and put Norway on people’s radars.

All in all, we can conclude that Norway has been an underrated tech hub in the Nordics, with companies like Opera and Kahoot! being probably the only recognizable startups. That’s why I decided to compile a list of 7 startups from the last 5 years that best describes the Norwegian startup scene:

1. Superplus (EdTech)

Founded in 2013, Superplus won a startup award even before the launch of its product SuperSpeak and were also able to raise 3 million NOK. SuperSpeak is an app dedicated to children who struggle with the effects of having low-functioning Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and other speech and language development difficulties.

The app already has over 3000 users.

It focuses on making children's lives better by helping them:

  1. to communicate using pictures and sounds from the surroundings and
  2. to develop critical language skills through games with a built-in token economy system.

An amazing idea to help parents, special needs care providers, organizations, and children to communicate in a stress-free manner.

Superplus Norway startup

2. Nabobil.no (Car sharing)

Nabobil.no means “Neighbour’s Car” in Norwegian and is valued at 35 million NOK (~ EUR 3.7M). They are the first ones to enter the Norwegian market and were inspired by the sharing economy model pioneered by AirBnB and Uber among others. NaboBil connects those individuals who need a car with car owners who don’t often use it.

The founders came up with the idea when they realized private cars in Norway stay unused on an average 23 hours a day. This paved the way for car owners to lease their cars to people needing one and monetise the idle time.

The CEO Even Heggernes (former country manager at AirBnb for Nordics & the UK) expects a stable growth in 2017. They also plan to expand their service to a new country this year.

Nabobil.no Norway startup

3. Meshcrafts (IoT)

Meshcrafts founders? Graduates from Oslo University of Life Sciences. Their vision? “Zero Emission, no hassle”. And why not? Norway is one of the greenest European countries with one electric vehicle (EV) per every 100 people. So, it’s not surprising that the company wants to simplify access to EV charging points via an app with secure payment options.

Meshcrafts’ app “Smart Urban Mobility” puts the charging stations online, delivering real-time information to drivers and operators. They are the first ones to build such a solution and are aiming to launch their system worldwide.

Meshcrafts Norway startup

4. No isolation (MedTech)

No one should be lonely, especially children and seniors suffering from long-term illnesses. Due to their situation, they find it hard to stay in touch with family and friends.

Founded in 2015, with the help of StartupLab Oslo, No Isolation built a robot (called AV1) that can become a person’s eyes, ears, and voice, allowing them to take part in school classes, excursions and family events. One (child or adult) can control the avatar using a tablet or a smartphone. AV1 is available in Norway, Sweden, Denmark, the UK, the Netherlands and Romania

It's always connected to the internet, even when no WiFi connection is available thanks to the built-in 4G module.

Updated: The company was nominated for the Startup of the Year at the Nordic Startup Awards in 2016. Following the success in 2016 No Isoloation is now nominated for 2 more regional categories in 2017: Startup of the year (Nordic) & Best social impact startup (Nordics) by winning the national competition. 

 

No Isolation Norway

Photo: Estera Kluczenko (No Isolation)

 5. MiniPro (Aquaculture)

Although MiniPro doesn’t even have a website, it defeated four other finalists to get the 1st prize of NOK 1M (~ EUR 107 K) at the Angel Channel pitch competition. Their product? Baby food for baby fishes. It makes perfect sense since Norway has one of the biggest markets for aquaculture.

The company’s solution has been a sensation probably because it solves an industry-specific issue: feeding fish larvae from the very beginning so that they are able to digest important nutrients from the start. The startup is tapping into a huge market that only seems to be growing globally.

6. Iris Ai (R&D Automation)

Iris is an AI research assistant that gives knowledge seekers a “shortcut” to relevant research and helps them connect the dots. Here’s a Q&A taken from a Tech Crunch article:

Q: How does mankind, the world benefit from Iris?
A: Let’s say that we give Iris 1,000 papers around a specific challenge around climate change. She can read that, she goes ‘okay, I’m going to have to read these things and these things too’. She’ll come up with a hypothesis… and then she’ll be connected to a simulation environment, where she can take the experiments, run there and actually test it out. And publish the result – whether the results are positive or negative.

Read the full article published on Tech Crunch.

Iris AI Norway startup

Now that's something.

7. Ducky (Environment)

Have you ever felt like you would like to reduce your carbon emission footprint to help save the environment but didn’t know how to start or measure it? Norwegian startup Ducky tells you exactly how to do it. Founded in 2014, the startup created an app to quantify, visualise and communicate your everyday climate activities. Their aim is to help spread knowledge and motivate people towards eco-friendly habits and sustainable lifestyle.

Ducky is the first tool that combines climate awareness and behaviour change through visualisation and gamification.

Ducky app norway startup

Final thoughts!

There are more and more companies that are being funded throughout different sectors in Norway. Unfortunately, they don’t receive enough attention outside the country. Hopefully, with these seven startups, you now have a better overview of Norway startup ecosystem. They represent Norway’s tech hub where the environment, society, and health play an important role.

Check our blog if you would like to discover more Norwegian “hidden gems”. In the meanwhile why not read our article on promising startups from Finland.

 

21 August 2017Comments are off for this post.

The most promising Finnish startups of 2017 – List of 10 startups

Finnish startups are forced to think and act internationally from the very beginning because even though Finland is a rich country, it is relatively small. When you combine it with one of the best educational systems in the world, skilled engineers and entrepreneurial mindset in the society, you get a recipe for a successful startup scene. Helsinki has over the years become a regional powerhouse and produced some outstanding startups.

Take a look at some of the most promising startups from the whole of Finland.

Finnish Startups:

1. ResQ Club

ResQ Club a Finnish food rescuing company that launched their service in 2016. With more than 1000 partners, 200 thousand app downloads, 300 thousand sold meals and 100 tons of food saved they serve their mission to save the world and enjoy delicious food in the meantime.

The company joined forces with Meal Server (a FoodTech Startup) from Germany to strengthen their capabilities.

They received a combined total financing of 2.2 M€ to expand their services.

ResQ Club app Finnish startups

2. Funzi

Funzi is a Finnish startup that develops a mobile learning and information platform with an initial focus on emerging markets. Funzi's services develop new skills and empower co-creation and collaboration between mobile users and experts.

The company delivers classes on livelihood and well-being to young adults in Africa, the Middle East, and Southeast Asia. Funzi is designed mobile-only and works on all connected devices, even low-end feature phones.

Funzi had over 4,5 million all-time learners.

Funzi Mobile app Finnish startups

3. Vainu.io

Vainu is a data-driven prospecting and lead generation platform for sales. Their platform collects sales intelligence on over 100 million companies to determine the most valuable sales prospects.

The platform currently includes 6 databases from the United States, Finland, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, the Netherlands. The company was founded in 2014 and is one of the fastest growing SaaS companies to come out from the Nordics.

Vainu Finnish Startups

4. Noona

Noona Healthcare is a mobile service that provides cancer centres with a real-time holistic view of their patients’ wellbeing. It improves the quality of cancer patient care and makes the patient-clinic relationship more personal and meaningful. Clinical staff can rapidly respond to severe symptoms and provide better care to far greater numbers of patients.

Noona also enables patients to stay in close contact with their clinic and check the progress of their recovery.

The company plans to enter ten new markets in 2017.

Noona Finnish Startup

5. ŌURA

ŌURA is a wearable sleep tracker that helps to improve sleep performance. It tracks body temperature at night and gives valuable insights into well-being based on unique sleep rhythms.

The ŌURA mobile app turns data into a daily report to help you understand your state of mind, body, and spirit. The company was founded in 2013 in Finland but also has an office in San Francisco.

6. Zadaa

Zadaa is a marketplace app that by connecting people with a similar size and style can help them to sell and buy clothes that fit them well. The company was founded in 2015 in Helsinki and is now expanding to other Nordic markets. It's available in more than 600 cities in Finland, Denmark, and Sweden.

Zadaa Mobile App Finnish Startups

7. Lumoa.me

Lumoa is an AI powered customer experience and feedback analytics. It targets its service to companies which gather large amounts of customer feedback. It’s a SaaS platform for companies which want to turn customer feedback into actionable insights.

The service provides feedback in 60 languages along with insights right after the feedback.

Lumoa Finnish startups

8. Proximi.io

Proximi.io enables software developers to kick start their location-aware application projects. It also helps them to deliver context-aware content to their customers. Proximi.io is a unified SDK and API to most of the mobile positioning technologies available on the market.

Localization based apps and services are more and more popular and Proximi.io strives to make them even more accessible.

proximi Finnish startups

9. Disior

Disior develops software solutions for clinical use. It enables patient-specific optimized treatments of bone fractures. The Disior software allows surgeons to analyze and optimize orthopedic treatments and surgeries. The tool uses patient specific 3D images and risk factor data to evaluate the treatment effects. Moreover, it can help with making better decisions for rehabilitation by giving precise recommendations.

The company was set up by ex-Nokia engineers and PhDs in orthopaedics and traumatology.

Finnish startup

10. Entocube

Entocube aims to revolutionize sustainable food production. It offers an alternative to traditional food that can be crucial in creating a greener world. The company is building a self-sustainable solution for a source of nutrition by raising crickets.

It should help cut down on food waste, carbon emission, deforestation, and become a viable option for growing food in urban areas. This clever infographic by Entocube explains how the 4-week harvest cycle looks like.

Entocube infographic Finnish startups

Photo: www.entocube.com/entocube-en

Summary:

As you can see Finland has many promising startups and many of them are on a mission to make our world a better place. We will keep an eye on Finnish startup scene and share interesting insights on our blog.

If you know other promising Finnish startups please do let us know in the comments section below or contact me directly on LinkedIn or via email.

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+48 506 798 998
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COMPANY DATA

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VAT ID: PL7781465185
REGON: 301183743
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PRIVACY POLICY

OUR OFFICE

Wojskowa 6, 60-792 Poznań, Poland
+48 506 798 998
office@setapp.pl

COMPANY DATA

Setapp Sp. z o.o.

VAT ID: PL7781465185
REGON: 301183743
KRS: 0000334616

PRIVACY POLICY

 COMPANY DATA

Setapp Sp. z o.o.
VAT ID: PL7781465185
REGON: 301183743
KRS: 0000334616

PRIVACY POLICY

OUR OFFICES

POL: Wojskowa 6, 60-792 Poznań, Poland
+48 506 798 998
office@setapp.pl

ISR: 220 Hertzel Street, 7630003 Israel

COMPANY DATA

Setapp Sp. z o.o.
VAT ID: PL7781465185
REGON: 301183743
KRS: 0000334616

PRIVACY POLICY

OUR OFFICES

PL: Wojskowa 6, 60-792 Poznań, Poland
+48 506 798 998
office@setapp.pl

ISR: 220 Hertzel Street, 7630003 Israel

COMPANY DATA

Setapp Sp. z o.o.

VAT ID: PL7781465185
REGON: 301183743
KRS: 0000334616

PRIVACY POLICY

OUR OFFICE

Wojskowa 6, 60-792 Poznań, Poland
+48 506 798 998
office@setapp.pl

COMPANY DATA

Setapp Sp. z o.o.

VAT ID: PL7781465185
REGON: 301183743
KRS: 0000334616

PRIVACY POLICY

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