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News from the Swedish startup and tech sector

Welcome to Swedish Tech Weekly issue #6.
I decided to stick to Thursday as publishing day, for the moment. If you have comments on that, please hit reply and let me know!
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Exits and funding rounds
  • American rapper Snoop Dogg has become a minority shareholder in the Stockholm-based fintech Unicorn Klarna and, according to Forbes, will also be the face of Klarna’s latest marketing campaign, changing his name to Smoooth Dog.
  • Quinyx, a London/Stockholm-based provider of workforce management solutions, has raised a $25M (€22M) funding round from existing investors Alfvén & Didrikson, Battery Ventures and Zobito (news in English, news in Swedish).
  • Peltarion, a startup from Stockholm developing deep learning artificial intelligence technology, raised SEK182.1M (€17.7M) from new and existing investors, including FAM, EQT Ventures and Euclidean Capital (news in English, news in Swedish).
  • Stockholm-based online pharmacy Meds received SEK50M (€4.9M) in funding from among others Inbox Capital (news in English, news in Swedish).
  • Gothenburg-based HR startup Winningtemp raised SEK33M (€3.2M) in funding from among others the Norrsken Foundation, Chalmers Ventures, and Almi Invest (news in English, news in Swedish).
  • Stockholm-based startup Telness, a mobile operator targeting entrepreneurs and businesses, has raised SEK20M (€1.9M) from Johan Ekberg och Stefan Tengvall (news in Swedish, machine translation).
  • Gothenburg-based Adnavem, a marketplace for freighting services, secured SEK10M (€970K) in funding from new and existing investors (news in English, news in Swedish).
News from startups and the tech scene
  • In 2016 Stockholm looked like it could challenge London for the VC crown, but since then the amount of money invested in Stockholm-based startups has dropped dramatically, while Berlin and Paris are closing in on London.
  • Stockholm-based fintech Dreams, which helps people to get better at saving money, plans to expand to France, Germany, Belgium, Spain and Holland in the upcoming years.
  • After the recently announced acquisition of Swedish rewards and customer loyalty app startup Wrapp, here is a look back at the company's troublesome journey since its launch in 2011.
  • Profile of Stockholm-based startup Woilà, which promises people to pay them money if items they bought online have gotten cheaper within 90 days after purchase (article in Swedish, machine translation).
  • Profile of Tyler Crowley, an American who one might easily mix up with Spotify CEO Daniel Ek, and who has played a crucial role in creating a lively startup scene in Stockholm with regular events and a high-profile yearly conference.
  • A primer on Stockholm's startup ecosystem.
  • Breakit covers the boom of Swedish audiobook subscription services, and points to a challenge in their business model: Since fixed licensing fees have to be paid for each book a user listens to, heavy users might cause the services to lose money, despite them paying the monthly subscription fee (article in Swedish, machine translation).
  • The German car sharing services Drivenow and Car2go failed in Sweden, but the newcomer Aimo which since a few months ago has 300 electrical vehicles on the streets of Stockholm, reports a successful launch (article in Swedish, machine translation).
Other news and interesting things to read
  • The newly founded AI Sustainability Center based in Stockholm will address the scaling of AI in broader ethical and societal contexts. It has various large companies and institutions as founding members/supporters.
  • IKEA is currently testing a cashfree store in Sweden. Only 1 out of 1000 customers is said to have requested being able to pay with cash (article in Swedish). In other IKEA news: Wired writes about the furniture giant's smart home ambitions.
  • Simon Schmincke of Swedish VC Creandum has suggestions for how seed and series A entrepreneurs get the most out of their board.
  • The Electronic Frontier Foundation encourages people to write to the ministers responsible for Sweden's position regarding the controversial EU Copyright Directive, to vote against Article 13 and Article 11.

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