Swedish business daily Dagens Industri and their tech news channel Di Digital is launching an initiative to make the Nordic digital ecosystem more transparent. Standout Capital, since long an advocate for quantifying the new business landscape, is a partner to Nordic Tech List and supplying company information from our database.
In earlier blogs we have explored both the trend that private companies delay their IPOs and stay private longer, and the new platforms like Nasdaq Private Market that support growth companies in a new semi-public stage. The new private marketplaces offer visibility towards the market and liquidity for owners and investors. There is another movement happening in parallel, in essence making the wider private company eco-system more transparent too.
For the last few years, we have followed a development in the US where information about the startup market is collected and organised in new databases (like Mattermark and CrunchBase) and marketplaces (like AngelList) making information easily accessible for investors and others. With hundreds of thousands of startups, and a wide range of investors from institutional VCs to angels, the rise of new market mechanisms to match buyers and sellers was bound to happen, and it’s built on new technology.
In a blog from early 2014, we explored why tech investments is a new software industry. We looked at new tech-enabled financing platforms like AngelList, FundersClub and Kickstarter, and also how traditional VCs like Kleiner Perkins and Sequoia were building their own platforms to track and monitor the fast-changing tech market. We believe that the successful tech investors must have a tech focus, not only in their investment but also in the way they run their business, i.e. deal flow, intelligence and operations. The modern tech investor is a tech company itself, and that’s why Standout Capital has built databases from the start.
What about the Nordics? The trend to quantify the tech market has been slow with the exception of a few early initiatives such as Neil Murray’s The Nordic Web based in Denmark, James Pember’s Swedish Startup Space (now merged with tech blog Breakit) in Sweden and Arctic Startup from Finland. A challenge for these initiatives, although very ambitious efforts, has been resources. It takes time, money and a proper organisation to efficiently track and update the constantly changing startup environment. International databases like Mattermark and CrunchBase, meanwhile, have not covered the Nordic ecosystem sufficiently, and the reason is probably that they have not had any real local presence.
Compared to the US, there are already public databases available from government authorities for every registered company in the Nordics and it’s easy (except maybe in Denmark) to get complete financial information like annual reports and other data. However, information about new startups (that have not yet filed any annual reports), entrepreneurs or investors is more scarce, and not in one place.
Now, Dagens Industri and Di Digital are launching Nordic Tech List, a database that will cover all of Nordic digital business, including startups, mature tech companies, entrepreneurs, investors and other stakeholders. It will be a “who’s who” of Nordic tech. The web service will launch in early 2016, and is based both on both public data and data supplied by partners to the project. Standout Capital has provided over 1,000 relevant Nordic companies from its database. The other partners are investments funds Northzone, Creandum, EQT Ventures, Moor och Industrifonden.
“This is an open service we are building for the community, together with the community. We want Nordic Tech List to be a window to the world for anybody interested in the Nordic tech scene”, says Howard Rimington, project manager for the Nordic Tech List in a post in Di Digital.