26 November 2012

Stockholm startup ecosystem

Why Stockholm as a start-up center? Location, education, infrastructure, government support, and long, dark and cold winters!--

Why tiny Stockholm has the most stunning startup ecosystem since Tel Aviv: " . . . And yet, because of its size, relative affluence, and technological advancement, Sweden does make for a useful first market for homegrown Internet companies. A common expansion plan starts in Sweden, moves out to the rest of the Nordic countries, zips over to Germany, the UK, and the rest of Europe, and then, all going exceedingly well, winds up in the US. Stockholm enjoys numerous other advantages, including a widely developed broadband network pushed out by the government in the 1990s, giving most residents the sorts of download speeds that could only encourage rampant piracy, and hence the arrival of enterprises such as Kazaa and thePirate Bay. It’s not surprising that Spotify started in Sweden, where piracy was so rampant as to be utterly normalized. . . Those fast Internet connections, however, coupled with a government-instigated PC-lending program that put computers in the hands of even the lower classes from an early stage helped cultivate a high-tech, early-adopter society. Plus, Swedish winters are long, dark, and cold, which encourages people to stay inside and noodle away at creative endeavors, such as programming or gaming."

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