You want more ambition in the Nordics I hear you say?
Let me present Northvolt, a giant battery factory with plans to raise at least $4 billion. To put that in perspective, that’s as much as was raised across 1000+ Nordic startups in the last two years.
It’s not hard to believe then that the man behind it, Peter Carlsson, has previously worked closely with Elon Musk at Tesla, and will now be going up against Tesla’s own plans to build a Gigafactory.
Interestingly, although the money so far has largely come from industrial investors, Peter Carlsson has specifically stated he is looking for capital from institutional investors as well, something that could be a hard sell. However, taking into account Musk’s record of acquiring companies from those close to him who’re working in strategic areas of interest, I wonder whether investors could see a relatively quick return if quick progress was made by Northvolt. Clearly, this is pure speculation, however, what will be interesting is to see which, if any institutional investors do participate and buy-in to Northvolt’s ambitious long-term vision.
Next Games became the first Finnish gaming company to go public on First North. And if their IPO is anything to go by, they’re likely not to be the last, as they benefitted from an initial pop on their market cap of 217MSEK.
What’s particularly interesting is that it appears that this listing was driven by the opportunity of raising capital through an IPO, something that has become less of a common occurrence in recent years due to the influx of available capital. However, this demonstrates that going public is still a very viable option for companies looking to raise further growth capital, with First North itself fast-becoming one of Europe’s most prominent exchanges for technology companies.
Looking long-term, this could be one of the most significant moments in the history of the Danish startup and technology scene. By becoming the first location outside of Silicon Valley for Singularity University, Denmark truly has a unique opportunity to attract global talent. Of course, there are still numerous challenges that need to be overcome to ensure that this can be taken advantage of, but this is a strong step in the right direction.
It also contributes to the belief that the Nordics can play a vital role in exponential technology having a positive impact on some of the biggest issues and problems that the world currently faces, with SingularityU having a particular focus on health, environment, security, education, energy, food, prosperity, water, space, disaster resilience, shelter, and governance, positioning Denmark to have serious global impact going forward.