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The Nordic Startup Scene in 4 Deals

SaaS & Cloud, Enterprise Software, AI, Internet of Things, IT Services & Outsourcing, News, AR/VR

The Nordic region boasts one of the most exciting and influential tech ecosystems on the planet. Many companies born in the Nordics have played a fundamental role in the digital revolution that has taken place over the past few decades. Think the world-changing likes of Skype, Spotify and Klarna. 

Success has begotten success, with the ecosystem being nourished by the region’s entrepreneurs. For example, Skype founder Niklas Zennstrom set up the VC firm Atomico, which has gone onto invest in top Nordic companies like the games developer Rovio. While the area did see a decline in VC funding last year relative to 2021, this was in line with global post-pandemic trends, and 2022 still saw investment in the Nordics break the $10 billion mark. 

Here at Hampleton, we’re looking forward to taking a deep dive into the Nordic tech world at our upcoming Executive Briefing. Taking place in Stockholm on 22 February, it will see a panel of experts delineate the most significant trends and explore key M&A case studies. You can secure your spot by following this link. And, as a taster of what’s to come, here’s a quick look at some of the major transactions we’ll be delving into in Stockholm.


Omnio and IBM

In 2022, we at Hampleton Partners were proud to advise Copenhagen-based ApS on the sale of its flagship product to IBM. Called Omnio Edge, it connects operational technology (OT) to IT systems, allowing data to be easily collected and visualised. This streamlined data acquisition from disparate devices by multiple manufacturers makes it easier to monitor operations and scale industrial IoT and Industry 4.0 initiatives.  

The deal brought Omnio Edge into IBM’s Sustainability Software portfolio, and was a key part of IBM’s wider AI strategy. Thanks to the acquisition, this Danish technology has been incorporated into various IBM offerings, including Maximo Application Suite. Hampleton founder Miro Parizek hailed the deal as confirmation that “Omnio Edge is another excellent example of world-leading technology developed in the region.”


ComAround and BMC

In one of the most significant Nordic deals of 2020, Stockholm-based software developer ComAround was acquired by IT and enterprise software giant, BMC. ComAround’s expertise in AI and NLP-based knowledge management made it an attractive target, with BMC’s Chief Product Office saying that incorporating the ComAround Knowledge platform would make for an “unbeatable combination” for its customers. 

The cloud-native platform optimises the sharing of knowledge across channels, feeding chatbots and virtual support assistants, enabling real time translation, and the easy publishing and editing of knowledge articles. This was another Nordic deal advised on by Hampleton, and we were privileged to help ComAround find the perfect strategic partner in BMC. As our Nordics director Michel Annink said at the time, “We believe the combination will create a clear leader in the ITSM self-service knowledge management space.”


Queue-it and GRO Capital

Another top 2020 transaction was the strategic investment by GRO Capital into Copenhagen-based Queue-it. The latter is the developer of a “virtual waiting room” that allows the websites and apps of digital enterprises to handle surges in traffic without suffering slow downs. If the number of visitors to a site or app exceed capacity, they’re redirected to a virtual, branded waiting room, and then allowed back to the site/app on a first come, first served basis.

Given that laggy, buggy websites can so easily turn off customers and make them think twice about ever returning, the advantages of the Queue-it solution are clear. GRO Capital certainly recognised its role in our ever-more-digitalised world, becoming majority shareholder of Queue-it and describing the Danish trailblazer as “a strong fit with GRO Capital’s strategy of investing and supporting B2B software companies with global ambitions and products that solve important customer pain points.”  


Loop54 and FACT-Finder/GENUI

One of the highlights of our Executive Briefing event on 22 February will be a fireside chat given by Robin Mellstrand, the co-founder and former CEO of Loop54. The creation of this Swedish AI search and personalisation SaaS company was inspired by recommender systems seen on sites like Netflix, which tailor suggestions based on users’ preferences. 

Loop54’s co-founders understood that businesses which lack the immense user bases of companies like Netflix simply don’t have the data to fuel these kinds of filtering algorithms. Thus, Loop54 was born as way to allow e-commerce enterprises to enjoy the benefits of such algorithms without the need for large amounts of data. The platform facilitates one-to-one personalisation for customers, ranking search results based on each visitor’s particular interests and preferences. The browsing experience is made bespoke, sending shoppers to products and services they’re far more likely to buy.

Online stores selling everything from fashion to home tech have been utilising Loop54 to boost their conversion rates and improve customer experience. The company’s success led to its acquisition by leading product discovery and personalisation solutions provider FACT-Finder. Taking place in 2021, this was notable as one of the first major consolidations within the search, merch and personalisation SaaS space. 

How did this pivotal transaction come about? How did the Loop54 team prepare for the deal, and what steps did they take to ensure the best possible outcome? Our M&A experts will be closely analysing the whole deal, while Robin Mellstrand will be providing his up close and personal take on how things went, and what his fellow tech founders need to know when embarking on the M&A process. Don’t miss this chance to gain valuable learnings and meet your peers in Stockholm. Register here to be sure of your place.