When successful entrepreneurs are asked: “Why are Swedish startups so successful?” a common answer is that we have such a great ecosystem here. Investors, techies, users, event organizers, random hangarounds and so forth all pitch in to make Sweden the thriving tech country it is today.
Something has been missing though, which is especially noticeable for me since I’m a journalist: Sweden does not have a strong player in startup journalism. No Techcrunch, no Recode and no The Information. Swedish Startup Space has done a good job spreading the word – but it’s not really journalism.
Swedish Startup Space has done a good job spreading the word – but it’s not really journalism.
Now one or two clever individuals are probably asking themselves: So what? Why would a tech hub desperately need a news site covering it? After all, there’s always Twitter. And Techcrunch works fine in Sweden as well.
My answer is: Because local presence and journalistic professionalism are key attributes to creating a news service that becomes powerful enough to gather the full attention of the startup community. Only a truly focused quality publication will take the position as “the number one place to go to” – an important ingredient in the process of creating a common story for the ecosystem.
A news site and podcast (we just started a new one, listen here: http://startupveckan.libsyn.com/) isn’t just about spread the word of how great startups in Sweden are doing and how their technology is making the world a better place. Journalism also helps companies grow and mature.
An example: I am convinced that the, sometimes harsh, criticism Uber has gotten from some american tech reporters is helping the company to improve. Company culture, gender issues, keeping a startup on track towards it’s longterm vision – journalism is an influence in all these things.
We quit our well-paid and comfortable jobs (try getting one of those these days in the media industry) at Dagens industri
For me and my co-founder Stefan Lundell the last few weeks has been quite a ride. We quit our well-paid and comfortable jobs (try getting one of those these days in the media industry) at Dagens industri and has since then been working on building a news site that we believe will become an indispensable part of the Swedish startup ecosystem.
We hope that we’ll get your full attention soon enough.
PS. We have not yet decided on a name for our news site. Instead we’re going to crowdsource it! E-mail or tweet to me if you have a suggestion – or a good domain for sale.
Olle Aronsson, co-founder and head of product at a yet to be named Swedish media startup.