Inspiration, networking and smiling faces were a common sight during The Startup Grind event in Gothenburg this friday. Founder Derek Andersen interviewed a handful of entreprenuers before a crowded Lindholmen Science Park. Article written by Erik Sjölin.
The night started out with a warm welcome, some mingle and a simple but ever so appropriate buffet. The attendees, all of them with a smile on their face, greeted one another with a formal hand shake. It was almost like a ritual to engage conversation with the person next to you. The typical lounge music that filled the room was quickly overpowered as the chatting began. Suddenly a few distinctive handclaps indicated that it was time for the show.
It was almost like a ritual to engage conversation with the person next to you
“Welcome to Startup Grind Gothenburg!” moderator Filip Askviken pronounced and presented the first guests, Nils-Erik Jansson and Robert Gullander. As the founders of Precisely entered the stage, ovation was inevitable. In a brief interview on startups the two reflected on their journey towards success. The network Young Entreprenuers of Sweden, YEoS, was mentioned as an essential part in their startup careers.
“Finding other people and entrepreneurs to collaborate and do other things with is one of the keys for a successful business. YEoS is a place where everyone helps each other out and where you can cry on someone’s shoulder in bad times or cheer together in success. There is a high Level-of-Trust and you will find a lot of close friends” – Nils-Erik Jansson.
“To connect and send a lot of e-mails is furthermore important. You will find that entrepreneurs are very helpful” – Robert Gullander.
The room was filled with cameras and staff to log the event. It seems that recaps of the events is a factor worth taking note of. During the well-deserved fika, I had the opportunity to do a short interview with Derek. He described that great startup communities starts with great people.
“You just need a handful of people to take the flag and charge the front, and they are the first ones that are going to get shot probably. They take the risk and don’t worry about what people say. No one owns the startup eco-system. Everybody in this room owns it.” – Derek Andersen
“No one owns the startup eco-system. Everybody in this room owns it.” – Derek Andersen
Then Derek stepped up to the moderator’s chair and welcomed Per Jonsson, co-founder of YEoS, Jumpstarter and Everyday. Per started out explaining how his childhood had affected his entrepreneurial soul. He described that his parents always told him to do his own thing and how he had trouble to focus his energy in the right direction.
“It was like trying to steer 100 elephants into the same direction. I wanted to start something that could speak to everyone, even if you don’t call yourself an entrepreneur. So we started YEoS. The fundament was openness and a sense of belonging, a place where someone’s visions are not dismissed.” – Per Jonsson
With experience from quite a few startups, Per knows what he is talking about. All the trips back and forth to investors around Europe and the U.S. gave him insight on the important factors of success. Giving investors something they can physically try out is something you want to aim for, Per implied. He also said that, on a personal level, everyone that launches a startup for the first time wants accelerated experience.
“Today I think you should start a startup because you truly believe in it. It has to excite you! In the beginning it’s mostly for fun to create a startup, but then comes a decision whether to go for it or not. I remember how I asked myself if it was a decision made out of fear or trust” – Per Jonsson
“I remember how I asked myself if it was a decision made out of fear or trust” – Per Jonsson
With a round of applause Derek thanked everyone for coming and pointed out that the bar was now open. The mingle continued and the guest showed great appreciation to the hosts of the event. Good organisation and participation of the visitors conclude the event. Passing a microphone around during the interviews enabled everyone to ask additional questions, to the interviewees. There was also a possibility to, with a smartphone, write on a forum connected to a display in the room. The purpose of this was to list potential upcoming interviewees for the Startup Grinds to come. Let’s find out if Markus “Notch” Persson, founder of Minecraft, will turn up at Startup Grind.
Article written by Erik Sjölin.