Sweden is notable for its significant musical output. It’s a powerhouse for pop stars such as ABBA, Ace of Base, The Cardigans, Europe, Neneh Cherry, Robyn andTeddybears STHLM.
From its relatively small population of just 9.8 million people, Sweden is also notable for its software and information technology rock stars.
The two-person team of Laura Kalbag and Aral Balkan originally developed software in Brighton, United Kingdom before moving to the southern city of Malmö in Sweden.
Describing themselves as building ethical technology that respects human rights, Indie is developer of the web-privacy app Better that runs on macOS and iOS.
Founded as a hobby in 2006 by two Swedish aviation enthusiasts, Flightradar24 is a real-time flight information service. It tracks flights, origins, destinations and a whole host of other data including flight numbers, aircraft types, positions, altitudes, headings and speeds.
Flightradar24 also shows time-lapse replays of historical flight data. The data is aggregated from multiple sources, most of this is crowdsourced outside of the United States by volunteers with ADS-B receivers.
Headquartered in Stockholm, founded by former Facebook exec Diego Oliva and marketing consultant Carl Johan Grandinson, Glue produces a smart lock in which a smartphone becomes the key.
Access can be granted for friends, during particular times for the cleaner and on an ad hoc basis for deliveries. Access can be just as easily revoked. And this can be done from anywhere in the world. It’s an example of the Internet of Things, or IoT.
Founded by Jacob de Geer and Magnus Nilsson founded in April 2010, iZettle launched its first app and service in 2011 to help small business accept card payments.
Comprising of a card-reading device tethered by Bluetooth to a smartphone or tablet running the iZettle app, iZettle challenges traditional services in enabling small businesses to easily and cost-effectively process credit and debit card payments.
Founded in 2003, King is a video-game company that has created more than 200 games across iOS, Windows and Android.
King came to attention following the hugely popular release of the cross-platform title Candy Crush Saga, in 2012, that was considered to be the first successful game using the freemium model.
Acquired by Activision Blizzard, in February 2016 for $5.9 billion, King operates separately as a separate entity.
King has 475 million unique monthly users. The firm is listed on the New York Stock Exchange and is worth $5.5 billion.
Headquartered in Stockholm, Sweden, Mojang was founded in 2003 by games programmer Markus Persson.
Mojang is famous for the block game Minecraft in which the player explores and builds constructions from various cubes.
Mojang was acquired by Microsoft, in 2014, for a valuation of $2.5 billion.
MySQL AB was a Swedish software development company, founded in 1995, and was the creator of MySQL, a relational database management system.
MySQL AB was acquired by Sun Microsystems in 2008 which itself was acquired by Oracle in 2010.
The company was headquartered in Uppsala, Sweden and Cupertino, California. MySQL AB used to be one of the largest open source companies with around 400 employees in 25 countries.
Pingdom was founded in Västerås, Sweden as a website uptime monitoring company offering a suite of tools to customers.
In 2014, US firm SolarWinds acquired Pingdom for $67.3 million.
Founded in Stockholm in 1994, by by Ernst Nathorst-Böös, Marcus Zetterquist and Peter Jubel, Propellerhead Software is a music software producer.
It produces popular digital studio products Reason, ReCycle, Record, ReBirth RB-338 and Figure.
Founded by Fredrik Wrahme and Martin Agebrandt, Scriptogr.am was software to create websites from static Markdown files hosted on Dropbox.
Scriptogr.am, in that incarnation, came to an end on 14th August 2015.
Niklas Zennström, a Swede, and the Dane Janus Friis, released Skype in August 2003.
Skype was developed as a peer-to-peer voice over internet protocol (VoIP) system that popularised computer messaging, audio and video communication.
In September 2005, eBay acquired Skype for $2.6 billion. Skype was later sold to Microsoft for $8.5 billion and has moved from the peer-to-peer system to one being hosted on Microsoft Azure.
Founded by Daniel Ek and Martin Lorentzon in April 2006, Spotify is a freemium music-streaming service that launched four months later in the August.
Over 140 million people are active on Spotify with 60 million of those paying subscribers. The service provides users with access to more than 30 million songs.
Though founded by Swedes Alexander Ljung, a sound designer, and artist Eric Wahlforss, SoundCloud was established in Berlin, rather than Sweden, in August 2007.
The aim of Ljung and Wahlforss was to allow musicians to share recordings with each other. SoundCloud later became a full publishing tool allowing 40 million musicians to distribute their music tracks to over 175 million listeners.
Tictail is aiming for small business owners who’ve outgrown Etsy. Founded in Stockholm in 2012, and now based in New York, Tictail is home to in excess of 125,000 indie brands from over 140 countries.
In January 2016, Tictail opened a store in New York. It’s raised more than $32m from investors including Thrive Capital.
True Software AB was founded by Alan Mamedi and Nami Zarringhalam in 2009 and was launched across Blackberry, Symbian, Android, Windows and iOS.
Truecaller is a global telephone directory with caller ID, social media integration and call-blocking abilities.
The data is crowdsourced to enable the service to work where public data does not exist, such as India and United Kingdom.
Stockholm, with a population of less than a million, is a thriving city for technology startups.
Stockholm has also produced more billion-dollar unicorn startups per capita than any other city in Europe. A unicorn is defined as a privately held company with a valuation in excess of $1 billion.
Only Silicon Valley outperforms the Swedish capital.