Why the chatter? The reason is that the world’s most innovative tech companies see Sweden as one of the few places in the world where they must be present to stay at the technology forefront. Sweden spends more on R&D than any European nation. Over the years this has given Swedish enterprises a unique headstart on the global scene.
Raised to be creative, Swedes think big and take risks thanks to an ecosystem where free education and access to funding and social security make it easy to start a company. Completing the recipe, the government proactively helps startups to launch and grow. Hundreds of international tech companies have flocked to Sweden to tap this rich seam of creativity and knowledge.
FinTech – Stockholm’s big boom
One prime example of Sweden’s incredible startup scene is the new sector of Financial Technology, or FinTech – a growing area on the global tech scene as well.
In the past five years, Stockholm-based companies received 18 per cent of all private placements in FinTech companies across Europe. Stockholm-based companies like online payment providers iZettle and Trustly, as well as personal finance app Tink, have all attracted substantial investment in recent years. As a result, Stockholm is now attracting considerable international capital.
Internet of things – adding connectivity
Connected devices that “talk” to each other will increasingly run key aspects of our daily lives while we get on with other matters. From autonomous cars to wearables to smart home systems, Sweden is a world leader in the IoT revolution. For foreign companies, opportunities exist for collaboration, for production in and around IoT hotspots for R&D, and for strategic investment.
IoT products are adding connectivity to the global car pool. As the race to build driverless cars hots up, multinationals from Apple to India’s Tech Mahindra are coming to Sweden to use and develop the latest technology.
Computer game development is another hot area. The global success of Swedish-born games like Minecraft and Candy Crush has made the Stockholm-Uppsala region the second largest hub of game developers in Europe after London. Exciting opportunities exist for international companies in partnerships, licensing or acquisitions.
Source: World Economic Forum, WIPO, Euromonitor, Sparklabs