In the Nordics, venture capitalists (VCs) are looking for smaller investments that are more secure in comparison to Silicon Valley. There has been a staggering 30% decrease in the number of $10m+ rounds in the Nordic technology sector within the first six weeks of 2016 alone.
This has helped to spur companies such as Capital on Stage, who aim to reduce risk for investors by creating a platform for investors and founders ready for capital investment to effectively meet. The startup selection process offered by Capital on Stage only certifies founders with a lot of potential who are actively seeking funding between $500,000 and $10m. Numbers are intentionally kept low, with a ratio of 1:8 investors to founder/companies searching for capital.
This was done with the intent of working to attain deals that are of a quality nature, not just funding to fund companies blindly. Arjen Strijker, Capital On Stage Founder & CEO, stated:
“We wanted to create a physical event where investors would be in the spotlight, explaining more about who they are as a person and how they can help besides just providing a cash injection to startups. VC websites generally give poor insight in what they really are about. Also, at entrepreneur-related conferences participating investors typically remain somewhat anonymous and the attending startups need to go out of their way to get just a short meeting with an investor.”
Reversal of Roles
What Capital on Stage has effectively done is to reverse the conventional funding format that makes the event truly “founder focused”. VCs are the ones pitching and the founders then pick the VCs they would like to meet with during the Open Office Hour sessions that are available. Founders have the ability to pre-book two 10 minute sessions with the VCs of their choice.
First event in the Nordics
Following successful events in Amsterdam, London, New York, Singapore and Tel Aviv, the unconventional funding conference came to Copenhagen 17 March 2016. This was its first event in the booming Nordic tech scene, which is projected to see an 88.79% growth in the number of investments this year according to The Nordic Web. The event took place at Kromann Reumert, where there were 20 VCs and 150 founders ready for funding.