CHARLOTTE DANIELSSON HAS JOINED SILICON VIKINGS AS OUR NEW EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

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CHARLOTTE DANIELSSON HAS JOINED SILICON VIKINGS AS OUR NEW EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

Silicon Vikings is proud to announce Charlotte Danielsson as our new Executive Director.  Charlotte has a Juris Doctorate from Stanford Law School and has a Bachelor’s in Political Science & Economics from UC Berkeley, where she graduated with honors in the major and Distinction in General Scholarship from the university.  She has practiced business and immigration law since 1998 and we know that her vast experience helping foreign companies establish themselves in the US will be of benefit to the Silicon Vikings network.

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Finnish Digital Health Startups Pitching Event

        On September 23rd, at the Santa Clara Convention Center, the Silicon Vikings partnered with the Finnish Funding Agency for Technology and Innovation Tekes and the Finnish Innovation Fund Sitra to gather a group of expert panelists and ten Finnish startups. The panelists included: Dr. David Lindeman, Director of Health Care for CITRIS; Bill Reichert, Managing Director at Garage Technology Ventures; and Kyle Kling, Vice President of Business Development at Fenox Venture Capital. Each Finnish startup delivered their pitch to the panel and then received feedback and questions about their product and business model.....

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The Silicon Vikings Present: Nordic Pitch Night & Fireside Chat with David Helgason, CEO and Co-Founder of Unity – September 11, 2014

At the Silicon Vikings event on September 11,  David Helgason, CEO and Co-Founder of Unity, recounted his entrepreneurial journey in an intimate “fireside chat.” The evening’s discussion was hosted by a fellow Nordic entrepreneur, Henrik Bennetsen of Innovation Center Denmark. The venue, StartupHouse, reflected the event’s entrepreneurial theme. StartupHouse is a shared-desk workspace and dormitory for entrepreneurs, early stage startups and their teams. After Helgason’s informal but candid interview, over 15 startups from around the world delivered one-minute pitches to the audience. Attendees had ample time for networking and the opportunity to chat with Helgason and the many startup company founders, all while enjoying complementary beer, wine and appetizers....

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Nordic Pitch Night with Mikkel Svane

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Nordic Pitch Night with Mikkel Svane

On the evening of June 12th, Silicon Vikings co-organized the "Nordic Pitch Night with Mikkel Svane" together with SCALEit and Innovation Center Denmark. Mikkel Svane, CEO & Co-Founder of Zendesk, recounted his entrepreneurial journey in an intimate “fireside chat.” Afterwards, in the entrepreneurial spirit, 12 Nordic startup companies presented one minute “elevator pitches” to the audience. Attendees had ample time for networking and the opportunity to chat with Mr. Svane, all while enjoying complementary beer, wine and appetizers. 

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Nordic Startup Journeys: Challenges and Opportunities

The latest Silicon Viking event explored the topic of “Nordic Startup Journeys: Challenges and Opportunities” and was held at Babson College, one of the top ranked business schools for entrepreneurship in the world. The event featured a panel of Nordic CEOs, founders and advisors, including: Erik Harrell; David Helgason; Ari Tulla; Emil Eifrem and Lars Johansson. Jennifer Vessels, CEO of Next Step Growth, moderated the evening’s discussion. Attendees had ample time for networking and were able to ask questions in an extensive Q&A session. 

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Summary of Current Trends in Entrepreneurial Finance

Current Trends in Entrepreneurial Finance – May 1st 2014 – Silicon Vikings and Babson College The latest Silicon Valley Viking event focused on current trends in entrepreneurial finance and was appropriately set at Babson College, one of the top ranked business schools for entrepreneurship in the world. The three expert panelists, Jacob Donnelly, Jon Thomas and Lili Balfour, came from a variety of financial backgrounds. Attendees had ample time for networking and were able to ask questions in an extensive Q&A session. 

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Norwegian MOOC Commission Report: Time for MOOCs

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Norwegian MOOC Commission Report: Time for MOOCs

This posting summarizes some of the content of the report that the Norwegian Commission appointed by the Norwegian government in mid-2013 to examine “the MOOC phenomenon” and what this might mean for Norway. I also provide some of my own comments throughout the posting. The Commission report, so far only available in Norwegian (but an English version may come at some point, I have been told), is the first of two reports as the Commission will issue a final report this summer, apparently with more detailed recommendations for Norwegian policy makers. 

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Chess, STEM, and Norwegian World Champion Magnus Carlsen

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Chess, STEM, and Norwegian World Champion Magnus Carlsen

This blog post discusses some issues addressed by the Norwegian World Champion Chess Player Magnus Carlsen in a lunch meeting here in Silicon Valley today. I was intrigued both by the connections between chess, STEM and entrepreneurship and I also comment on some of the things I found most interesting in the Q&A session with Magnus. 

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Nordic MOOCs: Quo Vadis?

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Nordic MOOCs: Quo Vadis?

This blog post revisits some issues raised in past posts relating to MOOCs, but adds some new elements that have emerged in the growing literature on MOOCs in recent weeks. These developments are placed in the Nordic context where new developments are also taking place, including commissions and conferences being organized as practitioners and policy makers scramble to figure out what they should be doing on the constantly moving MOOC landscape 

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“When will you exit, and how much will I make?”

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“When will you exit, and how much will I make?”

At a pitch event in San Francisco recently, one of the companies was asked this question by a participant on the investor panel. Frankly, the question made me bristle. Sort of like asking about the pre-nup before the first date. Still, entrepreneurs do sometimes hear this question and accordingly it deserves some consideration. 

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European Edupreneuring

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European Edupreneuring

An interesting conversation with a professor friend, Andrea Bach, at University of St Gallen in Switzerland stimulated me to share a few more thoughts on the topic of “edupreneuring” and especially within a European and Nordic context, but relate it to what we have seen and are seeing here in the US, and especially Silicon Valley. Andrea expressed strong interest in this topic and since I had come across some related and interesting information just a few days earlier, I thought it was time to revisit the topic and perhaps use it as a way to engage a few more people in a dialog around these issues. So, let me know if you have an interest in this or related issues. 

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Lean Founders, Lean Startups – the Low Effort Way to High Energy

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Lean Founders, Lean Startups – the Low Effort Way to High Energy

The life of an entrepreneur is chaotic, turbulent, unpredictable. Success requires a rooted base, high energy, excellent health, and an ability to roll with the punches that entrepreneurial life throws your way. That said, you will have little or no time for the kind of fitness regimen that “9 out of 10 personal trainers recommend.” Your day will be spent on the demands of the business with hopefully a bit of time left for you and your family. So with a demanding schedule and severe time constraints, how do you find a way to ensure the energy, fitness and resilience you need to deal with it all?

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Design for User Experience Revisited

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Design for User Experience Revisited

As more of our daily lives—while working, learning or playing (and, yes, these are not mutually exclusive but overlapping)—involve digital media, it is obvious that the topic of Design for Great User Experience becomes increasingly important. So I am revisiting the topic because I have had a number of “touch points” with online user experience this week, as described in the blog post. 

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Three Steps to Better Pitching

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Three Steps to Better Pitching

Pitching has become a popular theme in bootcamps, seminars, and workshops. Everyone has advice to offer – mostly on how to do better slides, what size fonts to use, how many slides, how many minutes, how to use graphics, how to hook your audience, how to project your voice into the room, and more, and more, and more … The ability to be a good story teller is important, and entrepreneurs do need to perfect their skills in pitch delivery. However, there is an aspect of telling a good story that precedes great delivery: HAVING A GREAT STORY TO TELL. 

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MOOC Update

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MOOC Update

You may already have started to experience “MOOC fatigue” but new developments, and growing number of articles in the popular and academic press, keep coming, and there is still no indication that this trend will slow any time soon. In fact, there is now a fair bit out “MOOC backlash,” especially among professors who now are getting increasingly concerned about the impact MOOCs may have on their teaching careers, and this reaction is reflected in the current literature. But Europe, including the Nordic region, does not yet seem to have come to the “MOOC concern stage”, at least in any significant way, although it might come if Europe/Nordics follow US developments, perhaps with a 12-month or so lag. I also suspect that we will see growing discussion in the Nordic region in the next year about both opportunities, including for (regional) collaboration, as well as potential concerns that MOOCs may bring to the region’s professors 

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Who Needs Honesty, Industry and Quality?

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Who Needs Honesty, Industry and Quality?

Answer: People who want entrepreneurial success!

Recently I was a guest at Artiman Ventures Concept Spring event at the Santa Clara Marriott. It featured some keynote speakers followed by wine tasting and dinner.

It was entertaining and edifying in every way – and I am not just talking about the 1983 Bordeaux!

I especially enjoyed a talk by one of the speakers, Tom Miller. Tom offered some insights gained by working at companies big and small. His talk centered on three critical success factors for (entrepreneurial) success. I would like to share them and offer some commentary.

In order of occurrence....

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The GDC Nordic Breakfast Seminar

The GDC Nordic Gaming Breakfast Seminar on Tuesday the 26th of March,organized by Innovation Center Denmark, Innovation Norway, Tekes, FinPro, Enterprise Estonia, and Silicon Vikings and hosted by K&L Gates in San Francisco, were visited by many Nordic game founders that attended the GDC 2013 in San Francisco. 

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Some Thoughts on “Industrial MOOCs”—In a European Context

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Some Thoughts on “Industrial MOOCs”—In a European Context

Over the last two weeks I have attended two, 2-day summits here in Silicon Valley that both addressed a variety of issues and developments at the intersection of learning, innovation, technology, jobs/work. The fascinating discussions at these summits led me to reflect on what the potential role might be of MOOCs—e.g. Massive Open Online Courses (a topic I have covered in various previous blog posts)—or MOOC-like courses and online learning experiences, in a broader, industrial context. A recent MOOC-related development in Europe around SAP and a number of other players further piqued my interest in this topic 

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GREAT talk by Ann Winblad--at Innovation Center Denmark

This special blog post contains a very interesting talk that Ann Winblad gave at ICD on February 5 when the Danish Minister of Trade and Industry, Pia Olsen Dyhr, came to visit Silicon Valley. When I met Ann recently and talked to hear about her presentation she said yes to my request to post her talk at our Silicon Vikings website so that many more people could have a chance to read her remarks. 

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