THE SWEDISH-AMERICAN CHAMBER OF COMMERCE, INC.
IN NEW YORK A Spotlight on Swedish-American Business
This way in NEW MEMBERS
ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
MARIA TUFVESSON SCHUCK
NOVO BOUTIQUE LIVING
THE MENTOR PROGRAM
DAVID E. R. DANGOOR
IN N E W YO R K No. 2 , 2018 THIS ISSUE IS SPONSORED BY DELOITTE
Editor & Writer Eustacia Huen
Producer Yasmina Backstrรถm
Publisher Anna Throne-Holst
Art Director & Editorial Isabella Cramner
8 Look before you leap 10 David e. r. Dangoor 12 deloitte 14 New Members 16 Swedish Tastes in NY 18 Maria tufvesson shuck Main Feature
Index Invest, Kurppa Hosk, Novo Boutique Living,Tarform Motorcycles
Marcus Samuelsson Group, FIKA, Oatly, Bon Bon
20 SACCNYâ€™S Tools 22 Arash Sangari 24 The mentor program 26 fotografiska 28 Annual general Meeting Guide
IN NEW YORK is the magazine of The Swedish-American Chamber of Commerce, Inc. Design: D Solutions NYC
Postmaster send address changes to: The Swedish-American Chamber of Commerce, Inc. 570 Lexington Avenue, 20th Floor, New York, NY 10022 Tel +1 212 838 5530 | email@example.com | www.saccny.org Copyright 2017 by The Swedish-American Chamber of Commerce, Inc. All rights reserved. Reproduction of contents without permission not allowed. Kindly note that opinions expressed in signed articles are not necessarily those of the officers and directors of SACCNY.
L ET TER FR OM T H E P R E S I D E NT Dear Members and Friends Moving across the Atlantic is difficult, but expanding a business overseas is even harder. Driven to lower the threshold, we are more than ready to help you face the challenge!
Since Last Issue
New Members: Six Increase in unique web page views: 31% New Board Members: Nine Swedish-Swiss Mixups: Unknown. One major
For over a century, SACCNY has been a link between Sweden and the U.S., helping Swedish companies establish and develop their businesses on the U.S. market. This year, we will further our mission by launching GatewayUSA—a unique business platform where Swedish companies can co-create, network and gain invaluable knowledge from one another. Granted, there are plenty of benefits to surrounding oneself with like-minded Swedes when living and doing business abroad. But when it comes to making real progress, striking a balance between embracing one’s own culture and adapting to a new one is essential. At SACCNY, we are familiar with that sweet spot. With extensive experience in the field, and a deep understanding for our members’ preference to include other Swedes as part of in their network, while simultaneously wanting to establish cross-cultural ties with the U.S. and other professionals, we have facilitated many successful collaborations over the years. Most importantly, we understand that Swedish professionals seeking to expand to the U.S.—aspiring to capitalize on new opportunities associated with a new market—have their fair share of challenges. Recognizing and focused on all of the above every day, this issue will cover the challenges that come with the
transatlantic move, provide hands-on advice for setting up new businesses and adapt existing business cultures to the U.S, not to mention highlight members that have successfully adjusted their strategies to the U.S. market. And just as importantly, we want to encourage those who have not yet made the move. We are certain you can overcome the obstacles—just look at Spotify who recently went public on the New York Stock Exchange, now ranking among the most valuable companies in the world, among many of our member companies who are living evidence of successful international expansions. SACCNY is here to help you face the challenge, and with our new platform GatewayUSA we have never been this ready. Lastly, I want to thank Deloitte—this issue’s sponsor—for being an actively engaged member and for tirelessly promoting international business. As for the rest of you, I look forward to working together, combining the best of what Sweden and New York have to offer in an open yet innovative business climate at GatewayUSA.
Anna Throne-Holst, President, SACCNY
IN TE R NATION A L I Z AT I O N FA C T S
87% 63% 61% 51%
Believe that culture is a potential competitive advantage when doing business 1 of startups see the cost of internationalization as an obstacle to global expansion2 Swedes in SACCNY’s network think their brand is strengthened by emphasizing a Swedish origin 3 of Americans have a very positive perception of Sweden 4
CALENDA R O F E V E N T S may 3
EXECUTIVE WOMEN’S Luncheon 2018
EACC Women’s Leadership event
General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)
pitch & mix with eacc
eacc spring networkning event
SACCNY BOARD MEETING, Stockholm
Visit www.saccny.org/events to view our full calendar and to register 1 Deloitte, Global Human Capital Trends survey, 2016 2 The Confederation of Swedish Enterpris, Villkoren för 3
framtidens storföretag, 2018 The Swedish Institute, Swedish New York, 2013 Swedish Institute, Bilden av Sverige i Kanada och USA, 2017
Spotify Goes Public
What This Could Mean for The Swedish Business Community
Recap of Anna Throne-Holst and Johannes Jarl’s Presentation at the Serendipity Challenge 2018
Photo: Teodor Axlund
On April 3, the biggest news in the digital and music-slashvideo-streaming world was none other than Spotify´s debut at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE). Under the “SPOT” stock symbol, the 12-year Swedish music, podcast and video streaming service founded by Daniel Ek and Martin Lorentzon quickly seized headlines for its nontraditional IPO process. What does Spotify going public really mean to the Swedish business community? Anna Throne-Holst and Johannes Jarl were interviewed by Dagens Industri and Expressen to discuss its impact. Johannes Jarl—SACCNY’s Business Services Manager— believes the answer is more opportunities. Johannes Jarl mentioned how Spotify has helped the Swedish tech community earn “some legitimacy” on a global scale. Spotify’s success signifies that smaller countries like Sweden have what it takes to create world-class tech companies like Twitter or Facebook, according to Johannes Jarl. ”Looking at the results, Sweden is second only to Silicon Valley in producing unicorn companies. The Chamber sees many companies who want to penetrate the U.S. market and we are ready to receive them and help them get started”, Anna Throne-Holst concluded.
For those in the know, one of SACCNY’s most important initiatives is GatewayUSA. Aside from it being a networking and co-working space in Manhattan, how much do you know? On March 27, SACCNY´s President Anna Throne-Holst and Business Services Manager Johannes Jarl shared more details in Stockholm at the Serendipity Challenge Summit in Stockholm—Sweden’s largest entrepreneurship competition for startups and growth companies. Anna Throne-Holst kicked-off the presentation by introducing GatewayUSA as part and parcel with the Chamber’s progression, highlighting its benefits to Swedish companies looking to move to New York. Picking up from there, Johannes Jarl elaborated on the platform’s three key functions: help small companies reach the U.S. market, form mutually beneficial partnerships between startups and established companies, and ease the expansion phase for everyone. In closing, Johannes Jarl invited the floor to New York and make the most of this exceptional business platform.
New Membership Category
Targeting Small Businesses with Less Than Ten Employees
The Chamber has introduced a new membership category called ‘Small Business,’ targeting companies with less than ten employees. For $600 per year, here is what SACCNY offers you: membership discount on all business services, access to SACCNY’s unique business Matchmaking Program, tailored guidance and support, introductory feature in one In New York magazine, listing in the SACCNY Membership Directory, preferred treatment for business referrals, and so much more. For any Swedish startups or entrepreneurs looking to break into the U.S. market, there is nothing out there lending quite the same level of attention to your specific needs. So check out SACCNY’s web page, spread the word or sign up today at www.saccny.org/ memberships.
SACCNY Chairman Takes On New Engagements Global Affairs and Child Protection
Karl Wellner, Chairman of SACCNY, has joined The Council on Foreign Relations, a 78-year-old independent, non-partisan membership organization, think tank and publisher, recognized for its bi-monthly journal Foreign Affairs, influential David Rockefeller Studies Program, and insightful meetings on international issues among leaders within government, business, intelligence and foreign-policy communities. Mr. Wellner was also elected President of the board of The New York Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (The NYSPCC)—the world’s first child protective agency, founded in 1875, which pledges “to continue fighting to prevent child abuse and help the healing process for those who have been victims.” Commenting on Wellner’s appointment, the former board President of the NYSPCC, David Stack notes, “The Society will remain strong and steadfast in its lifesaving mission under his stewardship.” Congratulations!
Look Before You Leap How to Scan And Evaluate A New Market
The Swedish-AmericanChamber ofCommerce, New York
Expanding to a new market can be extremely rewarding for your business, but before you take the leap, SACCNY wants you to consider a few things to find the right fit. Many Swedish companies have decided to expand and develop their companies in the U.S., and for lots of good reasons. The U.S. is and remains the largest, most prosperous consumer market in the world. Bigger profit and sales aside, it is a great way to drive for more innovation. That said, new opportunities often come with extensive risks. Which is why, before jumping into this big decision, it is important to take a step back and gauge if the new market is truly a good fit. To that end, each professional must
ask: What opportunities does this new market bring? Is there (enough) demand for the product or service I am selling? What does the competition look like? What customer segment should I target and how do I reach them? Given the number of issues involved, evaluating a market can be overwhelming. To make your life easier, SACCNY has gathered six ways to kickstart the process.
Do you need help with any of these steps? Reach out to us at SaccNY
1: KNOW YOUR PRODUCT
2: UNDERSTAND THE CULTURE
It is difficult to figure out your best market, competitors, and potential factors for success if you are not familiar with your own product or service. This is why you must be crystal clear about your 4P’s of marketing (price, place, promotion and product). That way, you will have a basic idea if your business will fit into the new space.
Cultural difference can make or break your company in more ways than one. On the operational level, the understanding between co-workers can affect productivity. On the marketing front, it determines the relatability of a product to its audience. Therefore, you must learn about the locals in the new market. Figure out if your product or service really caters to their needs or interests. Learn about the country’s religious and cultural traditions, and whether they could affect the running of your business. Essentially, the more you know about the general and working culture of the new market, the better you can deduce if your business is a good match.
3: CONDUCT MARKET ANALYSIS
4: STUDY THE LAW
Inevitably, the feasibility of a new market boils down to numbers. If nothing about the new market makes financial sense, then it is clearly a no-go. Which is why, number crunching is key here, as you cover all your bases—examining the trends and condition of the new market, tracking cost patterns and making forecasts— to ensure the expansion is financially sound.
One of the biggest challenges about expanding into a new market is dealing with a different set of rules. One country’s yellow light may be a red in another. So before you venture abroad, make sure you have a good grasp of all the regulations, legal procedures and documents you need upfront, not to mention the number of funds involved. Not only will this save you from the stress and expenses of potential lawsuits, it can also help you determine the viability of an expansion. Read more about this on page 18.
5: ASSESS THE LOCAL AUTHORITY
6: GET HELP
Surely, you do not want to bring your prized company to a war zone. But even when it is not something as extreme, having a stable local government is key to your success. As you evaluate a new market, take a closer look into government-related factors, be they protection policies for businesses, assistance programs, or currency exchange rates.
Nothing makes life easier than having someone who truly understands the idiosyncrasies of your new market. Although the internet offers plenty of information, extracting the right one requires lots of time and expertise. This is why in almost all the points mentioned, it is better to seek help from local experts. Better yet, find someone who is familiar with both your original and new markets. So say you are a Swedish company looking to expand in the U.S., SACCNY would naturally be a good choice. Given our deep knowledge of both Swedish companies and the American market, we know what the U.S. market wants in terms of products and services, and can even help with matching your company with another for business partnership.
One- On- One
Achieving Success Doing Business Like A Swede
David E. R . Dangoor “The people you meet here are likely the opinion leaders in their own field. This is why New York is so special.”
David E. R. Dangoor, renowned international businessman, SACCNY´s former Chairman and sponsor of the Dangoor Marketing & PR Scholarship, dishes on how being Swedish could help you succeed in New York. David E. R. Dangoor is a man who wears many hats. Aside from his role as President of Innoventive Partners LLC, a strategic planning, marketing and public relations consulting firm; he is also the Chairman of the Board of Directors of BioGaia AB, a public Swedish biotech company, plus Board Member for organizations such as the Feinstein Institute for Medical Research and the New York City Ballet, among others. Since 1976, this Stockholm-native and graduate from the Stockholm School of Economics has developed a remarkable career in five different countries after leaving Sweden. During our sit down in
his Park Avenue office, this quintessential international businessman tells us about his career, life in New York, and how he believes being Swedish can help you succeed in the U.S. What is your number one advice for professionals seeking an international business career? Be flexible. You need to be able to relocate and travel a lot, which creates stress on some things that matter the most to us, such as relationships. In my case, I lived and worked in five countries, while remaining single. So if you factor the stresses of moving and traveling alone, you may have to be prepared for
a lonely existence at times. The upside is that you get exposed to different people and cultures. Flexibility and agility aside, were there any Swedish qualities that gave you a leg up in your career? Yes definitely. Being educated in Sweden gave me a big advantage—whether it is in honing my work ethic or lack of ego. Perhaps there is something about my “Swedish-ness” that led people to seek my opinion often. Also, I never felt less “equipped” than many of my competitors, who were often Harvard, Stanford MBA etc. degree holders. They often lacked what I call an appropriate
level of humblenessâ€”one of Swedenâ€™s typical traits. You mentioned education in Sweden as an asset. Given how many startups come from Sweden, do you think Swedish education drives innovation? I am not sure. If anything, sometimes education can be an obstacle, because you are taught to think in certain ways and molded to believe that some things are more desirable, such as having an international business career back in my day. Now, innovation has that luster. While I am not surprised Sweden is doing well on that front, I would not attribute it to education. Instead, I would say it is more about the Swedish upbringing and way of being that make us more aware of important world trends, which spark our desire to take part and aim for the top. For Swedish startups looking to venture abroad, why might New York City be an appealing choice? Network and stimulation. Whether it is in art, culture or business, you feel the energy and creativity everywhere in New York. There is constantly something new to stimulate you and with people from all over the world.
SUCCESS FACTORS #1 flexibility The ability to relocate is necessary for an international career
#2 Humbleness The lack of ego makes people seek your opinions
#3 Honesty Americans value honesty, a common Swedish trait
For example, during my 15 years on the board of the New York City Ballet, I was constantly amazed by the dedication, hard work and resulting brilliance of these young dancers. Despite the excitement and potential distraction in the city, these dancers stay focused because this is where you can most likely get acknowledged, and this is a stage that matters among the most. This is also true for entrepreneurs. Finally, the people you meet here are likely the opinion leaders in their field. This is why New York is so special, stimulating and exciting. You mentioned creativity, do you think it rubs off on entrepreneurs? Yes, absolutely. Lastly, what do you think draws Swedes and Americans to doing business together? Honesty. Americans are extremely enthusiastic and straightforward when it comes to doing business. And one of the great qualities Swedes are known for is honesty, a quality that is highly regarded among New Yorkers. It is amazing how the moment Americans view you as honest and trustworthy, doors open.
Go West Three Cultural Differences You Should Know About Working In The U.S.
David Järnland, Head of Corporate Finance Advisory & Partner at Deloitte Sweden, shares the key cultural issues Swedes should watch out for while doing business in the U.S. Nowadays, there are more companies than ever combining in one way or another. Whether it is through mergers, acquisitions or joint ventures, executives seem to believe that their companies could generate more value simply by acquiring technologies, products, and market access; creating economies of scale, and establishing a global brand presence. Yet, as more companies integrate, their perceived value appears to drop. Inevitably, one must wonder: Why? As it turns out, culture is one of the dominant barriers to effective integrations. In one study, culture was found to be the cause of 30 percent
of failed integrations—with companies with different cultures citing that it is difficult, if not often impossible, to make correct decisions quickly or to operate effectively. To resolve this, one of the best ways is to get expert advice. For more than a century, Deloitte has built a remarkable reputation in International Business Support, dealing with cross-border transactions, among other things. As a truly international corporation with offices in more than 150 countries, cultural difference is a challenge every colleague at Deloitte faces every day. The
cultural issues is through a structure of connected autonomies, where Deloitte’s professionals combine the company’s principals—commitment towards colleagues and clients, inclusion regardless of ethnicity, religious beliefs, or gender; integrity, and quality—with awareness of specific cultural and professional differences from other countries and regions. Now, the secret to tackling cultural issues requires knowing them. Here are some of the key cultural differences between Sweden and the U.S.—shared by David Järnland, Head of Corporate Finance Advisory & Partner at Deloitte Sweden—you should know right now.
David Järnland, Head of Corporate, Finance Advisory, Deloitte AB
Tradition of litigation
In Sweden, the work culture is heavily influenced by the Law of Jante, a code of conduct (in Swedish Jantelagen), which criticizes individual achievement and calls it ‘unworthy’ and ‘inappropriate’. Written by Aksel Sandemose in his 1933 novel A Fugitive Crosses His Tracks, this law is comprised of ten key rules such as “You’re not to think you are more important than we are”, “You’re not to think you are anything special” and “You’re not to think you can teach us anything”.
When it comes to Swedish and American styles of communication, there are some subtle similarities and differences. Let us start with the good news: There is not much of a language barrier between Swedes and Americans— thanks largely to many Swedes having a good command of English.
Sweden is not a litigious country, so lawyers are not usually involved unless there are larger transactions or agreements. Also, given the binding nature of verbal agreements and sense of trust in Swedish business culture, Swedes typically adopt more of a “grin and bear it” approach before proceeding to court.
As a result, Swedes are driven by consensus and can spend quite a lot of time in meetings, drinking coffee and ensuring that everyone is satisfied with the decision. Different rules apply in the U.S. Rather than avoiding the celebration of one’s strengths, qualities or accomplishments, people celebrate an individual’s achievement and drive. As the saying goes: “Time is money”. Americans see the consensus-driven approach as highly inefficient. While organizations in the U.S. normally have a clear (albeit occasionally informal) hierarchy, the idea of having this chain of command is to make sure that decisions are enforced through the company more efficiently.
In terms of differences, here is what you should take note. Americans tend to start the conversation with a little small talk. Once business mode begins, they generally get to the point quickly to save time. Swedes, on the other hand, take more opinions into consideration, which often results in more extended discussions. Initially, Swedes may come across as more reserved since they generally prefer to speak only when they feel the content is important or helpful enough. Nevertheless, they also like to call everyone by their first names regardless of status, title or how well-acquainted they are with the counterpart. Indeed, both countries favor an informal communication style. However, Americans can be quite personal whereas Swedes prefer to keep their private lives private.
This is certainly not the case in the U.S. As Americans are far more litigious, you may find hiring at least one good lawyer to be extremely useful. This distinctive attitude towards litigation in the U.S. is certainly something Swedes need to adapt to.
”Moving forward, keep these cultural differences in mind when you are dealing with M&A or other business situations. Stay aware of different cultures, and you will lead your company to more productivity and higher value someday.” 13
New Business Members Index Invest Smart Investments Meet Hands-On Management
In the current market, there is no shortage of investment opportunities. No matter which asset class you explore, significant experience and resources are often required to make the best decisions. For many Swedes with a global vision, those professionals could well be Index Invest—an independent investment group founded by Bjarne Borg and Fredrik Alama. With a core focus on real estate development, a diversified investment portfolio of vertically integrated equity investments, and environmentally conscious renewable energy investments; the firm boasts a strong presence in Sweden and select growing North American markets. Along with years of local presence, investing in the markets in which we live, coupled with a discerning eye for new high-yield projects; Index prides itself on its handson approach in each acquisition taking each project from pre-development to divestment. By investing its own capital, the firm ensures that all aspects of each project are managed with the utmost care and diligence.
Contact: Joacim Borg, Vice President firstname.lastname@example.org www.indexinvest.com
Kurppa Hosk Where Compelling Brand Experiences Begin
In order to build a successful brand, you must offer a strong brand experience. However, ask any company, this is easier said than done. Enter Kurppa Hosk, whose focus is exactly that. Devising its own unique method called Business Artistry, the design agency proves best at rendering solid business insights and highly creative expression into compelling brand experiences. The approach is highly effective for many parts of business—be it new business strategy, brand identity or digital design. Given how widely applicable the method is across industries and platforms, it is no wonder the nine-year-old company has already built a strong client portfolio, including Estée Lauder, Gucci, Pinterest, TELE2, H&M, and Intrum. Currently, the global design agency has offices in Stockholm and New York.
Contact: Alexander Kouznetsov, Managing Director, New York Alexander@kurppahosk.com www.kurppahosk.com
Novo Boutique Living
Bringing Light To The Darkness Of Business Travel
Transportation For The Future
Novo Boutique Living is ushering in a new era of business travel. More than just a pillow and a bed, Novo is building a global community, one in where their members will be able to feel right at home no matter where they land. With fully furnished and luxury appointed apartments throughout the New York City area, Novo combines the amenities and style of a boutique hotel with all of the comforts of home. All buildings are fully serviced and feature 24/7 support from their experienced team. Hosting and curating a wide variety of social events, Novo offers members the chance to really explore and live in the city they now call home.
As urban cities around the world become increasingly congested, people need smarter and greener ways to commute. Tarform Motorcycles, an innovative company, dedicated to building a new kind of electric motorcycleâ€” combining advanced manufacturing with green mobility and smart connectivity, is focused on solving that need. One of the main objectives at Tarform is to move away from traditional manufacturing. In order to do that, the automotive startup incorporates additive manufacturing, artificial intelligence and bio engineering as part of its production process. The result speaks for itself. As Tarform sees greater optimization in production and efficiency, it may be en route to redefining how vehicles are being made. Now, the Brooklyn, New York-based company is in the process of developing its first concept-prototype. The product is slated to launch in the second quarter of 2018.
Contact: Kimberly Headley, International Coordinator email@example.com www.staynovo.com
Contact: Taras Kravtchouk, Founder Taras@tarform.com www.tarform.com
Swedish tastes in New York Four Tips for Developing a Food Business Abroad
Marcus Samuelsson group ”It is not easy to build a business. As companies grow, entrepreneurs are always faced with new challenges. When I first started my own business, I was lucky to already have established my name at Aquavit, so people knew who I was and that gave my company credibility from the get-go. For others, it is important to consider your direction and find your niche. From then on, try to keep an open mind.
Similarly, apply the same attitude when learning about different people. Granted, the core of food business is largely the same wherever you go. Whether you open a restaurant in Sweden or in the U.S., you want to deliver great hospitality experience. To an entrepreneur, this also means familiarizing yourself with a different culture and really get to know your staff. Over the years, I found my love for traveling and curiosity about other cultures and people have helped shape my company.”
The world is always changing. Sooner or later, you may find yourself in situations you would never have imagined. In my
—Marcus Samuelsson, Award-Winning Chef, Restaurateur, Author, and TV Personality
Keep an open mind
FIKA Stay True To Your Goal ”Back when Fika first started in 2006, the concept of a beautiful Swedish café with handcrafted quality treats was unheard of and was something lacking on the U.S. market. As a Swedish company, holding coffee and treats dear to our hearts, we had always wanted to educate people about Swedish lifestyle through our selection of premium products. However, there were many obstacles to overcome. Whether it was finding a space to rent, convincing landlords that this would not be ‘just another deli,’ securing permits and licenses
case, I became an entrepreneur before the social media age. And now, it has become an important part of my work.
for constructions and operation, or steering New Yorkers away from their typical grab-and-go coffee culture, the road to establishing Fika was difficult. Thankfully, we never wavered from our mission. In spite of growing a few grey hairs along the way, I realize that New Yorkers are just as curious as they are busy. Which explains why, they were responsive and excited to give Fika— and a different coffee routine—a try. So here are my two cents: In starting a business, you will face a million hurdles and people telling you why you should not do it. The only way to overcome them and make things happen is to stay strong, maintain focus and be determined.” —Lars Åkerlund, Founder & CEO
MARCUS SAMUELSSON GROUP Celebrating food, music, culture and art
Appreciation of a coffee-centric lifestyle
Swedish plant-based milk
OATLY Be adaptable ”As a vegan, plant-based food and beverage company that has been operating in Sweden and Europe for almost 25 years, it is easy for us to forget how new and foreign we are to the U.S. market. But like anyone who is serious about expanding to a new place, we did not take anything for granted, or believe what works in Sweden will certainly work here. Instead, we chose to learn and adapt. Take our product as an example. In Europe, we have been selling items that are not certified gluten-free. But once
Bon BOn Engage your audience ”As a Swedish, family-owned candy boutique, since March 29 2018, we know there is room for us in the U.S. candy market. The quality of our products—100 different types of Swedish pick-and-mix-candy made with natural colors, no high fructose corn syrup, no trans fat, or GMOs—is something we are extremely proud of. Yet, our concern had always been: How do we get more people to know about us? This is why outreach and engagement are so important. Beyond our website’s delivery service, we will also partner with Grubhub, Uber Eats, and Caviar to reach more customers.
A Swedish Candy Company
we knew that this is important in the U.S., we went ahead and switched to North American oats, paid a little extra to assure our products are gluten-free. Another key difference we addressed is the way people shop. Since online shopping is much more prevalent in the U.S., we decided to launch an e-commerce site—something we do not have in Sweden—so customers can order directly from our website. Clearly, our strategy reflects our understanding of American consumers. Ultimately we need to be adaptable, so we can best position ourselves for success.” —Mike Messersmith, Manager
In addition, we will offer a subscription service, allowing delivery on a monthly basis. We also invited organizations such as SACCNY plus their network to our pre-opening. At the end of the day, hospitality is the heart and soul of our business, so we value everything we put into our brickand-mortar store. Each stylish and modern décor accent reflects our brand, and each greeting and interaction speak about our shop. At BonBon, we want to provide that ‘neighborhood-y’ feeling to our customers, making them feel welcome and at home, so we can guide them through this fun, Swedish candy experience.” —Selim Adira, Candy Specialist & coowner
Legal Matters How Entrepreneurs Can Avoid Legal Trouble In The U.S.
“Do your homework and know what you want to achieve.” Maria Tufvesson Shuck—SACCNY Board Member and Partner at the law firm Mannheimer Swartling—shares her perspective on legal protection in the U.S., which is known for its complex legal system and a strong tradition of litigation. For anyone looking to start or expand a business in the U.S., one of the greatest concerns is legal issues. And rightly so. According to Maria Tufvesson Shuck, a Partner at Mannheimer Swartling, the only Scandinavian law firm with a presence in the U.S., potential risks are abundant given the complexity of the U.S. legal system and the U.S. tradition of litigation. In addition to the 50 different state legal systems, there is also a federal legal system that governs certain areas such as intellectual property and bankruptcy. Since each party normally pays its own legal fees in litigation, it is quite common for meritless law-suits to be started, just to gain a negotiation advantage. As a result, “most entrepreneurs find themselves in need of legal advice not only during the setup period, but also on an ongoing basis.” Intimidating as this may seem, you can still grow your business in the U.S. without a hitch. For one, says
Tufvesson Shuck, “Do your homework and know what you want to achieve. Things change faster in the U.S. than in Sweden, so do not enter into any long term contracts and remember that everything is negotiable here.” As for key legal aspects to consider when starting a business, Tufvesson Shuck suggests “proper insurance protection and liability limitation, plus making sure there is no infringement of intellectual property rights of others or breaching of immigration laws.” Now, for anyone familiar with legal costs in the U.S., they know it can make a huge dent in the wallet. But if you want to scrimp by resolving certain issues yourself, make sure you get initial legal advice on establishing the right type of entity, preferably from someone with experience in assisting other foreign entrepreneurs, and invest in properly drafted standard documents and manuals. Once these things are in place you can start doing business and limit the legal expense budget to matters of
significant importance and matters that do not fit squarely within your standard business covered by your standard documents. Lastly, never underestimate the price of dealing with U.S. bureaucracy and doing business here. Which is why, at the end of the day, Tufvesson Shuck’s most important advice when it comes to avoiding legal troubles is: Proper preparation and reasonable budgeting.
Maria Tufvesson Shuck Partner Mannheimer Swartling
What You Need To Expand to The U.S. The ”To Do” List
Build your network
Define Your market Develop your Go-to market Strategy Study the Immigration Process
Do it right! SACCNY will support and guide you
Conduct a Partner Search & Reach Out for Meetings
Conduct a Market Analysis
create a budget for YOUR EXPANSION
Acquire Liability and Property Insurance
Complete Business Registration
Get an office (yes, at GatewayUSA)
Set up banking for your business
Tools to help you succeed in new york SACCNY´s Network Shares Thoughtful Insights SWE USA
Stay swedish A newly published study by the Swedish Institute shows that the majority of Americans think very highly of Sweden and Swedes. Do not try to become too Americanized—It could be a mistake.
Lawyer up Engage a good lawyer to help your company navigate the ins-and-outs of U.S. regulations. Be they taxes, import and export, immigration, employment and corporate banking services; chances are: they are very different from what you are used to.
Be direct Be direct and proactive when connecting with U.S. companies. Americans tend to get down to business very quickly, so cut to the chase and show them what you can bring to the table.
Refer to current customers Associating your company with big-name clients can help you reach out to potential customers. The reason is simple: Endorsement by larger brands can help you build credibility and will land you more meetings.
”The results are very interesting and indicate that the ties between Americans and Swedes are still strong. Clearly, many people in North America appreciate issues that are important to Sweden, such as innovation, sustainability, education and respect for human rights. This makes for fertile ground for further exchanges and new partnerships.” —Annika Rembe, Director-General of the Swedish Institute
”The U.S. provides a very flexible environment for business, but not so flexible as you might think. Hidden surprises can create enormous liabilities, so it is important for any startup or investor to develop a relationship with an established law firm early on, and make sure everything is fully compliant with the law” —Philip Berkowitz, Co-Chair U.S. International Employment Law and Financial Services Practices at Littler Mendelson, P.C
”When it comes to marketing—a product, company, or yourself—there is nothing more efficient than reaching out to opinion leaders and telling them what you have to offer. New York has many opinion leaders, and the best channel for a Swede to meet them is through the Swedish-American Chamber of Commerce.” —David E. R. Dangoor, President of Innoventive Partners
”Brand recognition is very important. That being said, size is not the only criteria. Affiliating yourself with quality clients, regardless of their size, will be most impactful and help enhance your credibility in the marketplace.” —David J. Kaplan, New York Asset Management Practice Leader at KPMG LLP
Cultural Differences Sweden v.s. the U.S. A Comparison Evidently, each culture is marked by several dimensions. We took a look at a report comparing cultural differences between Sweden and the U.S. Here is, according to Geert Hofstede, how each component could affect the way you work in each country.
Societies with hard values are characterized by a drive to succeed no matter what it takes. In the U.S., people can forego work-life balance in order to achieve success whereas Swedes value more of their free time and spending time with family and friends.
Lower scores here signify more openness to change. Sweden’s low score indicates that its workplace can allow greater flexibility and innovation. The U.S. scored even lower, meaning there is even more willing to embrace new ideas and expression.
Both Sweden and the U.S. are classified as indulgent societies, meaning that they tend to do as they wish and spend on the things they like. However, Sweden scores higher, which means it places a higher value on enjoying life.
While both countries are regarded as individualist societies, the U.S. scores much higher within the spectrum. In other words, both value a meritbased system at work—with the U.S. emphasizing more on proactiveness and self-reliance.
This quotient determines the power dynamic. In Sweden, team members’ opinions are solicited. By contrast, organizations are more hierarchical in the U.S., so decisions are typically made at the top.
Source: Geert Hofstede, Cultural Dimensions
What Entrepreneurs Need Inside The Organization That Boosts Swedish Economic Growth
Arash Sangari ”One of the toughest challenges entrepreneurs invariably face is stiff competition over limited opportunities. If that scenario describes yours: Do not feel deterred; just get help.”
Behold, there is an organization driven to help Swedish entrepreneurs. Arash Sangari—a National Agency for Economic and Region Growth (Tillväxtverket) representative—dishes about the organization, what it does and why its method works. One of the toughest challenges entrepreneurs invariably face is stiff competition over limited opportunities. If that scenario describes your situation: Do not feel deterred; just get help. Here at Startup-Sweden—an accelerator program in which I am the Program Manager as part of the National Agency for Economic and Regional Growth—our focus is to help Swedish startups gain traction in the global market through
innovation support systems plus better access to networks and resources. Some of the ways we do it for tech companies in particular include: a one-week accelerator programme in Sweden four times per year and global tech events that see public and private organizations—Vinnova, Business Sweden, Almi and Tillväxtverket— working together.
SACCNY´s annual entrepreneurship conference Innovate46, which we first co-hosted with the Chamber in 2014, is one of the most successful global expansion initiatives that we have helped arrange. The concept saw great development in participating companies, among which 20 have successfully scaled their startups for the U.S. Here is how we do it: Through business
matchmaking and organized meetings with potential customers, investors and partners. Many of the participating companies—including Behaviosec, DigiExam, MyFc, Peppy Pals and three of our own accelerator startups Referenza, Trilo Apps and iControl—have gotten the valuable feedback they needed to really know the U.S. market. In particular, take DigiExam—a company that creates digital exams online—as an example. Back when the edtech startup came to us for support, the company only had four employees in Stockholm. As we and the Chamber consistently provided them with opportunities and valuable leads (think leading universities in the U.S.), the team managed to establish their operations in New York and landed Columbia University as their first customer within a year. Now, the company boasts 22 employees and a platform with more than 2,800 participating schools worldwide—60 of which are based in the U.S.
decided to beef up our network by inviting Swedish Energy Agency to the partnership this year. We believe that Innovate46 and the joint one-week accelerator programme are exactly what Swedish tech companies need to break into the U.S. market. Thankfully, beyond the tools and support we provide at Tillväxtverket, there are several promising developments for budding Swedish entrepreneurs. First, there is the new GatewayUSA initiative by SACCNY, which perfectly matches our mission to offer a landing spot for small tech companies in the U.S. Second, Spotify’s listing on The New York Stock Exchange is a big win for the Swedish tech industry, since it only took Daniel Ek and Martin Lorenzon ten years to revolutionize an entire industry while building a global tech company with headquarters in Stockholm. Effectively, this also highlights Swedish talent, capital and innovation.
So when it comes to why our methods work, DigiExam’s founder Johan Hägglund sums it up best. “Innovate46 was a true eye opener for us. It gave us the insights and the right connections to understand that we, as a small Swedish tech company, can also succeed in New York.”
Third, let us not forget that Zlatan, Mr. Sweden himself, is in the U.S. This will be a significant boost to Swedish brands here in years to come. Hopefully, when the next Swedish unicorn debuts on the stock exchange, no one will mix up our flag with the Swiss one again.
What DigiExam’s story demonstrates is that entrepreneurs need strong local partners with valuable networks to assist their launch. Which is why, we
Lastly, to all entrepreneurs, especially those expanding to the U.S.: may you have Zlatan’s boldness to show worldclass leadership in your field, and deliver
top-notch results for your customers, partners and investors.
About THE SWEDISH AGENCY FOR ECONOMIC AND REGIONAL GROWTH (Tillväxtverket) A government agency under the Ministry of Enterprise and Innovation Promotes economic growth in Sweden by increasing companies’ competitiveness A strategic partner at SACCNY’s conference Innovate46 Apply to the Innovate46 expo, organized in collaboration with Tillväxtverket, on our website www.saccny.org/innovate46
Match made in (business) heaven How SACCNY Mentor Program Helps Women in International Business
The SACCNY Mentor Program, an extension of the Executive Women’s Conference, celebrates its 10th anniversary this year. The Program Director, Yvonne Thunell describes more about its cause and how it works. Forging an international business career is a difficult task in and of itself. But doing so as a woman in a new country can be even harder. With this particular challenge in mind, SACCNY organized a mentor program targeted for women in international business as a spin-off of the Executive Women’s Conference. The premise is simple: utilizing the Chamber’s extensive network, the year-long program pairs each young female professional, ages 26 to 35 years old, with a mentor who is an executive leader in international business. Throughout the year, each pair of mentor and mentee engages in a recommended eight to ten meetings, in-depth discussions, and evening
workshops focused on topics such as international leadership in international organizations. The program has seen executives signing up from more than 180 renowned, innovative companies, including Deloitte, Ericsson, H&M, LinkedIn and Spotify, just to name a few. As Program Director for the past ten years, Yvonne Thunell of Thunell & Partners knew the mentor program would be a success from the get-go. And now ten years running, she has been proven right. “I attribute this to the fact that we have so many talented participants representing many different sectors—who always fully engage in sharing experiences and listening to one another.”
Indeed, as she observes, “Many young international leaders grew more confident as leaders and found more enjoyment in their professional lives.” However, they are not the only people who benefit from this experience. Mentors, too, get something, perhaps more intangible but no less rewarding—a first-hand role in shaping tomorrow’s international business leaders. At the end of the day, Thunell describes this dynamic and rewarding program as a “win-win initiative.” The application for the program will open in May. Stay tuned for more information.
“Coaching someone younger is very rewarding for me in many ways. Aside from sharing what I have learned and passing something forward, I always gain insights and learn a great deal from my mentees. As I worked with Sara this year, I tried not to give too much direct advice, but instead guide with the ‘right’ questions. The purpose is to let her reflect and come up with her own solutions. While I certainly tried to incorporate some questions that have helped me in my own career, I also brought other discussion topics that I wish someone would have asked me when I was starting my career. Over time, I began to notice Sara’s growth—in self esteem, self awareness, curiosity and strength. And I must say: I am impressed!”
“Being able to regularly discuss career-related topics with one of the most influential Swedish business women is incredibly rewarding. My mentor, Magdalena Gerger, is knowledgeable, clever and insightful. She is a true inspiration and has helped me gain a lot of insight. One of the key things I have learned here is to go beyond setting ambitious goals to realizing them systematically. In order to become a global business leader, one must be able to prioritize and process lots of information quickly. Moreover, another valuable quality of this program is the ‘free space’ to discuss differences between men and women in business. Many of us work in industries where there is still a long way to go in terms of gender equality. So being able to discuss this with seasoned professionals has strengthened me to continue work to change this ratio.”
Mentor Magdalena Gerger CEO & President Systembolaget AB
Mentee Sara Resvik Investment Manager Industrifonden
Insights from 2017—here is what they say “As a mentor that has been with the program since 2007, I am always inspired by young leaders since they broaden my perspective and make me a bit ‘future proof.’ Although there is no single formula on how to become an excellent global leader, a program like this certainly helps. As Sheryl Sandberg once said, ‘Careers are a jungle gym, not a ladder,’ I believe that if a mentee really knows what she wants, she can take more risks and grab more opportunities. However, the realities for women and men are different. As proven by research, women are given less mentorship and less constructive feedback when they reach a certain level in their careers. Moreover, women have weaker networks. This is why, I believe this mentor program can be one of the ways to improving the balance”
“To me, a great mentor is a combination of these things: wonderful listener, wise, experienced, successful, encouraging, realistic, passionate and energetic. My mentor—Pia Gideon—are all these things. Throughout the year in the program, she put in a lot of effort as my mentor, sharing her wisdom and experience in a lighthearted way. Yet, at the end of the day, what I got out of this program goes beyond my time and relationship with my mentor, but also a remarkable peer network of professionals with whom I can learn and discuss different subjects. In the SACCNY Mentor Program, I also learned that being a global business leader requires the ability to generate a growth mindset among staff throughout the organization. And since the world is rapidly and constantly evolving, it is important to help people thrive under change.”
Mentor Pia Gideon Chairperson Klövern & Action Aid
Mentee Katarina Dahlen Head of Group Control Bonnier
Hot Ticket A Leading Cultural Hub To Open In New York
Jan Broman & Anna Throne-Holst
Fotografiska—one of the world´s biggest venues for photography and leading cultural hotspots—is making its way to New York. Co-founder Jan Broman shows us the space and tells us more. Next spring, New York will see the opening of Fotografiska, world renowned photography museum cofounded by brothers Jan and Per Broman. For those of you who may not be familiar with Fotografiska, it is nothing like your regular museum. Since its founding in 2010, both partners knew they wanted to bring photography to a wider audience. So incorporating world-class photography with a modern restaurant, dynamic bar scene, learning academy, art-oriented retail and event spaces, Fotografiska has become more of a global melting pot. Having hosted more than 170 exhibitions to date, showing the work of iconic
masters such as Annie Leibovitz, David La Chapelle, Irving Penn, and Helmut Newton, along with many exciting new photographers, this Swedish institution has become “Northern Europe’s most visited meeting place for contemporary art,” notes Jan Broman. As the self-dubbed ‘New Kid in Town’ is slated to open its doors abroad, the co-founders set their eyes on London’s Whitechapel and New York’s Park Avenue South as its starting points. For Jan Broman, the decision to move to New York is a natural one. During an exclusive tour for SACCNY´s members, of the 45,000-square-foot premise, currently under construction, he notes, “New York is the center of everything, so of course we want to try to strengthen
and enhance the photography here.” Nevertheless, regardless of the location or size of future developments, the spirit of Fotografiska remains. “We always try to create places that are inclusive and welcoming. In creating discussions and reflections, our greater vision is to inspire people to a more aware and conscious world,” says Jan.
Stay tuned for our next collaboration with Fotograf iska
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Staying relevant in the 21st Century SACCNY’S 112th Annual General Meeting
From the Chamber’s significant achievements to initiatives and new members of the Board of Directors—here are the highlights of our 112th Annual General Meeting on March 8. At the Annual General Meeting, which saw SACCNY’s Chairman Karl Wellner welcoming members from near and far, and expressing sincere gratitude to hosts Newmark Knight Frank for generously welcoming and hosting the meeting, the organization covered a number of updates. First, the meeting marked Anna ThroneHolst’s first anniversary as President of the Chamber, who shared her visions and directions for the Chamber’s future. Second, in an effort to expand the Chamber’s network, SACCNY introduced a new membership category
called Small Business for companies with a maximum of ten employees. Further, Anna Throne-Holst presented information about the important new initiative, GatewayUSA. This business networking space will be an important platform for growing Swedish tech and innovation sectors, slated to open in midtown Manhattan this year. Lastly, the General Meeting ensued saw the welcoming of nine new Board members—six of whom are women, indicating a 100%-increase in female board members.
Meet our new Board members They certainly are eager to meet you!
Since my dream is to help my network of female professionals reach top positions in Sweden, I love how the new GatewayUSA could be the ideal place for many of these entrepreneurial young women to implement their exciting new concepts.
As someone who is completely taken by the energy and new ideas of Anna Throne-Holst—our Chamber’s President, I believe it is important to test new ideas in a rapidly changing environment. To be relevant, one must find new ways to assist and interact with people and companies in the new economy.
Barbro C. Ehnbom Founder SALSS
Lena Apler Founder & Chairman Collector Bank
Bodil Eriksson CEO Volvo Cars Mobility
SACCNY can offer Swedish-American businesses and entrepreneurs a unique combination of skilled staff able to give its members on the ground guidance to the U.S. market environment and a broad network bringing established and new businesses together to explore joint opportunities on the U.S. market.
Matching great talent with the right opportunities is always a challenge, especially when entering a new market. The way I see it—both as an entrepreneur and someone working in the executive search industry among American and Swedish companies—SACCNY is a great partner in navigating the U.S. market.
SACCNY is an important part of staying connected to the Swedish-American business community, for which I am extremely pleased to join its Board of Directors. I look forward to engaging with different industries, exchanging perspectives and broadening the Chamber’s network as we move ahead.
Dan Frohm Director Carl Bennet AB
André Haug Founder Agganicio
Elisabeth Lundgren Partner Linklaters
SACCNY brings a combination of knowledge and infrastructure of large corporations to Swedish-American business. A fantastic example of this is Innovate46, which sees more and more financial powerhouses support, or sometimes, pursue startups and entrepreneurs during the growth phase.
As a strong believer in networking, I am thrilled to join the board of SACCNY and excited about the upcoming project GatewayUSA. For Swedish companies seeking to expand in the U.S. on the business front, this will be a networking base and a home away from home in New York.
SACCNY provides a great network of executives in the city that serves as a gateway to many Swedish companies hoping to expand and grow their business in the U.S. The SACCNY network is a solid partner in Team Sweden USA together with the Embassy, the Consulate General in New York and Business Sweden.
Karin Olofsdotter Swedish Ambassador to the United States
Over my career, SACCNY has always had a special standing in regards to American business and its broad network. I am looking forward to further enhance SACCNY´s network since it’s my belief that it is more important than ever in our digitalized world.
Per Ståhle Senior Vice President BTS
Helena Robertsson Partner EY
Getting Started in the U.s. with SACCNy SACCNY has gathered the right contacts, partners and business services for you to make it in the U.S. Here are some examples why this is the way in!
Business support • Assistance in business registration in the U.S. • Insurance help • Aid in performing audits and financial reporting
Delegation Trips • Tailored trips for a deeper understanding of the U.S. Market • Visits and meetings with representatives of government authorities, private and public companies, trade associations, scientific institutions and global NGOs
professional Mathmaking • Establishment of contacts with members from SACCNY’s extensive network • Customized introductions and meetings with potential business partners
marketing opportunities • Exposure in SACCNY’s publications, including In New York magazine, membership directory, tri-state directory, and various social media channels
the biggest Swedish-american network
membership distribution 14%
Young professionals 5%
bronze Gold Silver
REACH OUT TO SACCNY’S NETWORK OF MEMBERS 3 M , Aggancio, Applied Value, Atlas Copo, Carl Bennet, Cevian Capital, Citi, Deloitte, Ericsson, Essity North America, EY, Investor, KMPG, Nasdaq, Newman Knight Frank, PwC, Qlik Technologies, Sandvik, Scandinavian Airlines System, SEB, Skanska, Svenska Handelsbanken, Swedish Match North America, Volvo, Accenture, Beijer Alma, Cellmark Pulp & Paper, Elekta, Hand in Hand International, Innovation 360, Linklaters Advokatbyrå, Mannheimer Swartling Advokatbyrå, Nordea Bank, Saab North America, The Law Offices of Sidney N. Weiss, Thule Group, Winston & Strawn, American Friends of Uppsala University, Amore Brand Identity Studios, ASSA ABLOY Americas, Axel Johnson, Bonnier, Brown Brothers Harriman & Co., BTS, Chalmers University of Technology, Danske Markets, DeWitt Stern Group, Gibney Anthony & Flaherty, Guldkula Champagne, Hennes & Mauritz, Hamilton Advokatbyrå, Innoventive Partners, Investment AB Oresund, KARV Communications, Kreab, Lion Point Capital, Littler Mendelson, Makovsky, ManpowerGroup, Marcus Samuelsson Group, Morgan Stanley, New York Institute of Technology, Nixon Peabody, Orrefors Kosta Boda, Papamarkou Wellner Asset Management, Reed Smith, Ripasso, Scott & White Health Plan, Stora Enso North America Sales, Svenska Lantchips, Traxx Advisers, Universum, 2concilate Business Solutions, ABG Sundal Colier, Acast, Advokatfirman Cederquist, Advokatfirman Lindahl, Appelquist-Architects, Art and More, Atlantic Container Line, Barnebys, Bontouch, Bryman Wood, Carneige, CELLINK, Christian Dahl Racing, Church of Sweden, Compost Marketing, Condon O´Meara McGinty & Donnelly, Convinient Card, Cushman & Wakefield, D Solutions, Deutsche Bank, Digiexam, DUX Interiors, ECI Media Management, EF Education, EisnerAmper, Elanders, EMBA Machinery, Enhancer Consulting, EQT Partners, Expand International of America, FEI Företagsekonomiska Institutet, FIKA, Grand Hôtel Stockholm, Grant Thornton Sweden, Hästens, Hillswick Asset Management, Husse TriState, Hyper Island, Iggesund Paperboard, IKEA, Index Investment Group, Infozone, Ingram Yuzek Gainen Caroll & Bertolotti, International Doping Tests & Management, Interverbum Technology, Kauffmann Public Affairs, KTH – Royal Institute of Technology, Kulturbåtarna, Kurppa Hosk, Letsfaceit Nordic, Lúgh Studio, MeetApp Event, N365, Nordenstjernan Swedish News, Northwestern Mutual, Novo Boutique Living, NYC Navigator, Prime Group, Provins Insurance, Qapital, Qlucore, Roger Smith Hotel, Rose & Co., Sandberg Trygg, Scandinavian MAN, Schuylkill Partners, Securitas Services, Siggi´s Diary, Simiris alg, Siv´s Travel division of Tzell Travel Group, Sockerbit, Soundtrack Your Brand, Stockholm School of Economics, STRATFOX LLC, Svenskt Tenn, Tarter Krinsky & Drogin, The Lexington Company, The Swedish Program, Thunnell & Partners, Tin Can Studios, Transderma International – ProBios Laboratories, Treebath, VisitSweden, Westmusa, WhyWaste, World Childhood Foundation, WYND IN, 0600 LLC, Advokatbyrå Prima, Tarform Motorcycles
LEARN MORE ABOUT MAKING THE MOST OF OUR NETWORK AT WWW.SACCNY.ORG
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The Swedish-American Chamber of Commerce