Keeping track of receipts is no fun. I know you're there with me, but I don't think we say it outloud enough. One startup tackling the whole receipt and 'important papers' ecosystem is Arkkeo, who has built an online platform to track and store all those documents that get sent your way from official sources.
The way they see it is that it's a mutual benefit for everyone involved. People like the idea of going paperless, but email is broken in the sense that inboxes are clogged and messy. In one of their surveys, they found 94% of respondents like the general concept of having one service rule their receipts. Meanwhile 50-70% also would like this type of service to grab the more important stuff, like insurance, finance, and health papers into one place.
Editor's Note: This is a sponsored post for the DNA Engine Blog by Marc Dillion, head of Jolla's Sailfish development.
Jolla was born out of passion. We saw that we had a chance to make something really unique, and we decided to do it although seemed crazy to many people at the time. We have proven that by being different, doing unlike things and spreading the love, we can create a world class product with enormous demand and support from the world.
Since Facebook went public a year ago, it has started actively exploring possibilities for monetization and introduced many new features, which in fact seem to be pretty disruptive for users. This situation opens a lot of opportunities for Facebook-based application developers to improve users’ social media experience.
Espoo-based Fajoya builds a mobile app that allows Facebook users to help request, receive and reward favors from their friends. It aims to accomplish a social mission — to make the world a better place where helping others is something everyone wants to do.
With Supercell and Rovio being the two major media magnets in Finland, it is easy to overlook what else is happening in the region. We have earlier put a claim on Helsinki being the world's mobile gaming capital, which with Supercell making over USD 2.4 Million a day and Rovio claiming over €152.2 million in sales, is probably a fair argument.
However when it comes to day-to-day success, it is definitely not all about Helsinki. Tampere, a city in southern Finland with a population of just 217,000 is the second biggest gaming hub in Finland and has a lot of initiatives that foster the gaming industry.
Perhaps in some sense, the Tampere gaming industry has an even longer history than that of Helsinki. Traditionally Nokia's biggest R&D site was based in Tampere and in 2007 THQ, the North American games publisher who at the time had a turnover of over $1 billion, bought the Tampere based gaming company - Universomo.
As you've likely seen today, Finnish handset up-and-comer has started showing off their hardware at a demo event in Helsinki. I'll let others tell you how their market viability is, but if anything they're going to be a fun company to watch.
With Ubuntu and Firefox also getting into the handset game, they've got competition even among up-and-comers, let alone the giants like Apple and Android. They say there's plenty of room for innovation to challenge the larger competition, as as far as the newer competitors, they believe their experience in hardware, coming from Nokia, will be their path to success. As ex-CEO and current Head of Sailfish Marc Dillon says, "We know how to make products."
But it's unclear if they're really fighting in the specs war in the mid-to-high range, given they haven't released too many specs aside from 16GB + microSD memory, 8 MP camera, and 4G capability, and a removable battery. As co-founder Sami Pienimäki puts it, "The whole point of Jolla is to innovate in the combination of hardware and software."
Jolla has been teasing us for a very long time now and having written over four articles about them, we still had no idea what the phone or the OS was really about. Until now. Just minutes ago, we had a live demo by Martin Schuelle, Jolla's Head of Design and it all finally makes sense.
The OS is using the screen space more effectively than anything else out there with some very cool features that make the phone really stand out. However instead of writing it all out, how about we just show you the video:
The saying goes, "If all you have is a hammer, the whole world looks like a nail." They only sell one hammer in Hoa's Tool Shop, but luckily a psychological hammer is a pretty cool tool to wield.
The Stockholm-based startup has been doing a few things we've found worth writing about lately. Their creativity newsletter gets me thinking about fostering my entrepreneurial creativity every morning. Their main product, Viary, has been shown to dramatically cut down on face-to-face time needed with psychologists. And now, with the help of some people from Hyper Island, they've taken a look at the dance floor through a side-project app of theirs.
Editor's note: This is a sponsored post with our partner DNA Engine.
At ArcticStartup we write about how startups that are innovating to face corporations with larger wallets and resources. However once in a while, these corporations realize that startups are great partners and that the two can co-exists in order to bring better products, services and opportunities to all.
DNA, the Finnish telecom, recognized that they have a lot to learn from and a lot to give to the startup ecosystem in order to foster creativity, collaboration and growth.
Every publisher struggles how to present videos with pre-roll ads at the right moment when a user wants to see them. One solution is to embed the related video content into the site’s context manually. It is, however, very costly for publishers. Sprinkle, a Sweden-based start-up, is trying to help publishers automate the process of putting video content into context by publishing automatically context-based videos to visitors.
About a month ago, Max Niederhofer announced he was moving from his position as Vice President in Accel Partners' London office, to a Partner at Sunstone Capital's Copenhagen office. We caught up with him to talk more about his move, and about what entrepreneurs should know when negotiating with Venture Capitalists.
Creating and sending postcards from your own images is by no means a unique idea. There are a lot of companies offering the service. So when we first talked to Postify, it seemed like they were doing something that has already been done and then some.
However at a closer look, it seems like they do have a hidden gem in there. Instead of focusing on the end-consumer, they want to create a new marketing channel for companies.
The pan-European startup accelerator, Startupbootcamp, is announcing that each participating team in their new Copenhagen MobilityXL program will be offered a $1 million loan at the end of the program. As you guessed it, MobilityXL will focus on mobile startups, and will run in a 3 month program. Participating teams will still be given €15,000 for 8% equity at the beginning of the program, as in the past.
"Several accelerators have added eg convertible bonds on top of the normal offering but founders will still end up bleeding equity so we decided to introduce a much more founder friendly solution” says Lars Buch, head of the new Startupbootcamp MobilityXL.
The Finnish Ministry Of Transport And Communications Collaborates With SomePitching To Support Startup Activity
A new Finnish government initiative to promote the development of early stage digital start-ups in Finland is taken to yet another level by the cooperation between SomePitching and the Finnish Ministry of Transport and Communications. SomePitching and the Ministry have signed a contract to arrange six business idea competitions across Finland between 2013 - 2014. The contract relates to the Kide-program set up by the Ministry last year and SomePitching business idea competitions that have been arranged since 2010.
Startup accelerators are popping up all the time and normally it is not such an exciting piece of news. However today, Yandex, the Russian “Google”, announced a seed stage accelerator of their own. This is in-line with other corporations that are trying to be closer to the startup ecosystem, for example Google sponsoring TechHub.
Russia is an interesting beast with a lot of talent and ideas that will definitely be home to many great startups. However, there are still elements missing as was evident at the latest Slush, where many Russian companies pitched side-by-side with the rest of Europe. The ideas were brilliant but the presentation and pitching skills were often lacking.
Event app Vamos is adding more functionality than crowdsourced Facebook events, plugging into services like Eventbrite, Ticketmaster, and Ticketfly. The reasoning is pretty straightforward - there are more events out there than what's on Facebook, and plugging into paid events can generate some revenue.
I find Vamos to be one of the stickier apps out of all the apps I've reviewed, but it's likely because I fall squarely into their demographic of bored 20-somethings. Their app provides an easy way to see what's going on at the moment, and the Facebook integration gives you an easy way to see what your friends are up to.
Editor's note: This is a sponsored post with our partner UK Trade & Investment
A number of companies from the Helsinki region have moved operations to London to take advantage of the networks and connections available around London's Tech City. Among them count Foodie.fm, who has built a presence in Tech City to help bring their grocery shopping solution to the UK market, as well as Kiosked, the platform that turns images, videos, and applications into interactive storefronts.
Stockholm-based ShapeUp Club got a little bit of a shakeup yesterday after hiring as CEO Henrik Torstensen, ex-Spotify head of Premium Sales, and Marcus Gners, Vice President of Business Development at Stardoll. Their positions will be CEO and Deputy CEO, respectively. Both have a history of being advisors to the company.
The company's founders, Tove Westlund and Martin Wählby, will be heading up product development and sales. “I have been part of a couple of amazing growth journeys before and with the way ShapeUp Club is evolving, both from a product and company perspective, the potential is huge”, says new CEO Henrik Torstensson.
It is no secret online dating is surrounded by stories of disappointments and broken hopes. One reason is pretty simple - you never can be sure if the person behind the appealing profile picture is real. Fake profiles, hidden payments, annoying photos of kissing couples, clumsy nicknames is the incomplete list of what makes experiences of those seeking for a partner online so frustrating.
Helsinki-based Audrey has risen to a challenge to put an end to a disturbing faking game and revolutionize online dating experiences. Launched on 1 May in Finland, Audrey calls themselves the first real identity online dating service.
Two Swedish companies have partnered to improve conversions on mobile ads. Freespee, the mobile advertising "click-to-call" solution has partnered with, Tradedoubler, the internet advertising and marketing company founded in Sockholm in 1999. Tradedoubler has since moved headquarters to London, but have seen good growth. Today their network includes 140,000 website publishers and 2,000 advertisers.
It's been a few months since we've covered Freespree, but they offers a pretty interesting click-to-call advertising solution which they claim helps increase conversions.
Entrepreneurs looking for government contracts, update this negotiation strategy to your rule books. The Finnish Tax Administration is reforming their information systems, replacing seventy tax systems with a single one. Selected was the Fast Enterprises’ Gentax taxation software, along with Finnish-Estonian Nortal, who plans to implement the project for €62 million with the overall price of procurement running around €226 million over 15 years.
Also competing in the bid was IBM, whose bid of €38 million with a total value of €143 million over 15 years was rejected. The Finnish Tax Administration was able to do so under the public procurement laws, which says the contracting authority may reject abnormally low tender.