Agera helps companies and private persons obtain offers from auditors, lawyers and accountants. After conquering especially Sweden Agera is armed to the teeth to continue their expansion.
The service is simple: fill in a form describing the task you need completed and receive three non-committal offers within a few hours. Agera is mainly a B2B service but private persons can also use it.
Agera was founded in 2011 by the two young Danish guys Rico Andersen and Martin Hegelund. After a non-successful first startup (faadetgjort.dk) they were contacted by the Danish serial entrepreneur Martin Thorborg. Thorborg saw the light in the two young talented guys and after some thorough investigation of the market they came up with the idea for Agera together.
“The vision is to create transparency in the various markets – of benefit to both users, companies and the entire industry. Our role is twofold. While acting as a service company for the businesses looking for the best offer, we also act as a marketing company for the auditors, lawyers and accountants,” says founder and CEO Rico Andersen
Thriving and dashing forward
Since the foundation in 2011 the young startup has experienced rapid growth.
“Our small startup has turned into a great business and with this comes completely different
obligations. We have 50 full time employees, have just recently taken up 1700 square metre of new premises and are currently operating in three countries. We have gone from a monthly turnover of DKK 2-300,000 per month to now DKK 3-4 million per month,” Rico Andersen tells
Now Agera has more than 800 partners in Denmark alone. Within 2015 the two founders expect to double the number of employees and to reach a turnover of more than 50 millions. These expectations are, among other things, attributable to their recent entrance to the Swedish (ageras.se) and Norwegian (ageras.no) markets.
Sweden – an unexpected challenge
Even though the success is obvious now, the road to getting there has been bumpy – especially when crossing Oresund.
After the establishment on the Danish market the next seemingly natural and straightforward move was to enter Sweden – because how different can Swedes really be from Danes? Well, quite a bit, as it turns out.
“The Swedes don’t have the same immediate trust in each other as Danes have. They are very sceptic and they think in a completely different way than Danes. This realisation came as a bit of a shock to us. It caused us to start trying to think like a Swede and rethink our visual and verbal approach in order to meet their more sceptical nature,” Rico Andersen explains
It was clear that the site needed to radiate another kind of credibility. In order to learn what this entails, Rico Andersen and his team took in several Swedes to help develop a demo system build on “Swedish trust”.
The process of becoming respected and actually end up as market leader took 8 months. Despite it being a rough ride, Rico Andersen is happy that this was their first attempt of expansion
“The experience has clearly made us more humble when approaching new markets. We like to say that when you have conquered Sweden you are ready to conquer any market,” Rico Andersen explains while emphasising that one of the hands on experiences is the importance of hiring people who are thoroughly versed in the given country and market.
The expansion efforts are also recognised from outside as Agera is nominated for the Danish Ecommerce Price in the category Best Cross Boarder Company.
The next country to conquer is The Netherlands which they plan to do within the year.
The entreprenurial blood is still flooding
Despite the evident success the two founders are ready to hand over the company and start all over from scratch when the chance occurs. This will happen when Agera seizes up experiencing growth pain and “only” needs to be driven as a steady business.
“We absolutely wouldn’t mind coming back and build up a new company from scratch. Denmark will experience quite more of that from us,” says Rico Andersen
The growth is expected to continue and within the next three years the plan is to be present in 10 new markets and reach 300 employees.