By Katja Kotala, Community Coordinator and Program Manager at Nordic Innovation House
After two weeks of intense program, TINC was set free! Well, not quite. The third week was dedicated to private meetings with mentors, partners and customers. Some of the companies also got a chance to pitch to an investor, Matthias Dill from Statkraft Ventures gave some of the TINC companies a chance to connect and pitch their ideas. Some might say that even without too much official program this week, the teams were busier than ever!
The TINC group gathered for a design workshop at Nonobject on Wednesday. Malin Leschly, Branko Lukic and Yvonne Ericsson guided the participants to think about the way their products and services could form positive disruption. Nonobject concentrates in the space between the product and the individual, a place where you create a “positive meaningful surprise”. They forced the companies to take a step back from fine tuning their product, and consider how their products and services are experienced.
In the evening TINC sat down for a casual fireside chat with founders from two local Nordic companies, Jonatan Littke from Lookback and Thomas Ryd from CFEngine. They have already gone through the hurdles of moving a business to the US and building it here. The focus of the discussion was on building teams and the challenges of managing people that are scattered around the world.
Gearing up for the last week of TINC Spring 2017, below you can read more what two of the participants Shoreline and Smart Plants have experienced this far.
Ole-Erik Endrerud and Simen Malmin
“Exhausted but full of energy.”
That is how Simen sums up the general feeling when the third week of the program is well underway. During the program Shoreline has received confirmation that they have done a lot of things well, but they have also seen where they have made mistakes - like everyone else who has ever dared to build a company. Now they are working on their new strategy based on their learnings during the program, now that they understand better what it takes to make it in the US market.
According to Ole-Erik, the setting of the program allows the entrepreneurs to accelerate the process of doing something about the challenges they have, instead of pushing these decisions to the distant future. The main purpose for Shoreline to participate in the program was to get in touch with great entrepreneurs, founders and mentors in Silicon Valley that are experts in their field. This is something they couldn’t find in Norway. “We came here to validate our case, to see if it is something that could be huge. And we have got that.”
Especially the “psychology lessons” with Julie Hanna have been amazing in Ole-Erik’s opinion. “She gives you the pure real insights. You have made a lot of mistakes, but you have to make them and come out stronger in the other end.”
Shoreline automates their customer's mission critical daily operational planning with their smart agent based platform, increasing profits by millions of dollars every year. Read more at www.shoreline.no
Smart Plants applied for the program because they were looking for things that could help their company accelerate. This is both looking at the company internally, if they have the right processes and the right company structure, and externally, if they have a good product/market fit. “It has been a very interesting journey so far and the program has delivered in everything it promised,” Jon says.
Jon is the only person from Smart Plants participating in the program, but he has been active in keeping the rest of the team up to date. According to him every time there is a session that brings up something they should change in the company, they activate this in the company as well.
“Since it is time and money we could have used for other things, it is very important that we bring the learnings from this program back to the company.”
- Jon Rasmussen
For Smart Plants it has been very important to get input from external people, how they interpret the company and how their message is coming across. “Are we saying the right things and are we presenting our company the right way? We have got a lot of feedback and we are doing some changes in our messaging and our campaigns.”
Smart Plants turn your commercial building into a smart building in 15 minutes or less. It is a full-stack IoT company working with industrial IT-solutions. They empower building owners to make better business decisions by collecting and processing data that already exist in their physical assets. Read more at www.smartplants.io