Frumtak Ventures is the second longest running active venture firm in Iceland. Eggert Claesen and Svana Gunnarsdottir have invested in a number of companies in the last decade and have been instrumental in the development of the Startup Community in Iceland. Svana will speak in Startup Iceland 2019 in the investor panel. Some of the startups that have become scale ups from Iceland because of Frumtak’s investment are Meniga, Controlant, Activity Stream, Tulipop, Kaptio, AGR Dynamics, Data Dwell… for a full list of their investment look at their portfolio.
The investments by Frumtak through their portfolio companies has created over 700 jobs and these are all new job categories that did not exist before. Most of us forget that small startups and early stage companies create the most jobs in an economy, large companies rarely hire at the same fast pace as startups or early stage companies. Here is Kauffman report on the importance of Young Firms for Economic Growth. We have been lucky in Iceland where the Tourism industry and all the services related to tourism has created tremendous number of jobs and opportunities and economic growth in the last 7 years. However, if we do not continue to invest in new industries and technology, the economic miracle that we have seen in Iceland in the last decade after the financial collapse in 2008 will be a flash in the pan. We need to continue to invest in founders and the future. It does not happen on its own and I am looking forward to talking to Svana about this from a investor’s perspective.
Svana has participated in all of the Startup Iceland events except for the very first one in 2012. I am happy to say Svana will once again be in the investor panel this year and share her experience of working with founders in the last decade. This is an interesting juncture for Frumtak as Svana and Eggert are switching roles, where Svana will takeover as the Managing Director and Eggert will be the chief investment officer. You read about it here (in icelandic).
Svana is in the board of a number of these companies and has now the first hand experience of working with founders. I am looking forward to asking her about this experience.