Swedish Startup Space

Will Kivra digitalise Swedish mail in 2014?

Written by on January 9

Kivra, since acquiring local competitor Brevo during last summer, is now Sweden’s biggest player when it comes to digitalising postal mail. They had a pretty amazing back-end to 2013 – bringing in H&M CEO Karl-Johan Persson and God-El founder Stefan Krook as partners.

They also raised a further 50m SEK in capital in December – meaning the company should be full of resources and ready to take on 2014.

For those who are reading about Kivra for the first time, the idea is that consumers should be able to receive mail from companies and the government digitally, which according to Kivra is of course –  not only better for the environment but also more secure and efficient.

When you talk to people about Kivra though, people generally say the same thing – “Why not just use email?”

Well, after some research I’ve come to the conclusion that Kivra does have a couple of features which make it appealing as a consumer. Firstly, I can access my entire archive of postal mail. I’m currently sitting at my desk staring at a filing-cabinet full of mail from Bolagsverket, Skatteverket etc – it’s pretty unorganised and of course, impossible to find what I’m looking for quickly. If I could filter by date and search by keyword through my mail – that would be great. In addition, being able to access those documents from anywhere will be handy too, like I say, today they all sit in a filing cabinet on my desk.

Of course, one of the core benefits of Kivra is security – receiving sensitive information from government agencies directly – without needing to change too many hands in the middle. I can’t help but wonder if using BankID could be a good strategy for Kivra – although the irony isn’t lost on me how insecure our current postal mail system is anyway.

When speaking with Kivra, they tell me there is currently no support for BankID (or similar) but that they’re thinking of ways to enhance security. Like I say, their  current solution is still a security-improvement on what we have now – but I (and many) would like to see more in this area I’m sure.

Kivra isn’t without challenges though and the biggest one of course is – if more competitors pop up and start signing deals with different companies – that will truly hurt the consumer. The consumer should only need one application/service, so Kivra will need to keep charging forward to try make sure that doesn’t happen.

What do you guys think ? How will Kivra fare in 2014? Leave your comments below or tweet to us!

  • Patrik Johansson

    They have an interesting competitor in minmyndighetspost.se that is the official mailbox for receiving mail electronically from Skatteverket, Bolagsverket etc.

  • Rasmus Milesson

    I don’t buy your argument to “Why not just use email?”. I can search and filter just fine with both Gmail and Outlook as well as organize emails into different folders depending from where they are sent. I can also access my emails from everywhere regardless of device being used.
    This is the first time I’ve heard of Kivra but I’ve been using Gmail for years without problems. Kivra has a long, long, long way to go before I would trust them with my mail.

    • jamespember

      Interesting point Rasmus. Would love to hear more from the team re: your concern.

    • Sara Bjelkstam

      Hi Rasmus, thanks for you comment. Kivra is not aiming to replace email, instead being a complement. Main differences are: Our mailbox is linked to your social security no, only connected senders/companies where you already are a customer can send you mails, you can also at anytime choose not to accept receiving content from a sender when you have created your account. Hopefully you will give us a try and I would be happy to receive more feedback or further thoughts! Rgrds Sara (sara@kivra.com)

  • Michael Höglund

    Didn’t a similar service shut down in the US lately? (if they are exactly the same..hard to tell) http://blog.outboxmail.com/post/74086768959/outbox-is-shutting-down-a-note-of-gratitude

    • jamespember

      Seems so, yes.

  • Jonas Nielsen

    Another aspect is also the recent debate about identity theft. I don’t want important letters to be sent to my mailbox where they can get stolen, I rather have them to Kivra. For example: http://www.di.se/artiklar/2014/1/29/id-kapare-snor-orange-kuverten/

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