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Norrsken Impact accelerator

IF YOU WIN, WE ALL WIN

Welcome to Norrsken Impact Accelerator.
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The world’s most exciting tech startups • Solving the world’s greatest challenges • $100k investment • 8 week sprint in Stockholm • Unicorn founder mentors • All areas of impact but special focus on food-tech

The Norrsken Impact Accelerator brings together a global collective of entrepreneurs and investors in Stockholm, Sweden. Among them are founders of more than 50 unicorns and companies such as Klarna, Mojang, Soundcloud, Kry, Good American, Meltwater, Voi, Rekindle and Brilliant Minds. 

Why? To use the power of entrepreneurship to solve some of the greatest challenges facing our planet today, such as poverty, disease, food waste, climate change, pollution, healthcare and mental illness. 


$125k Investment

Upfront pre-seed investment of $125k. There’s no fee for the program so you keep the full $125k.

UNICORN MENTORS

Dedicated 8 week sprint at Norrsken House Stockholm with mentorship from world-class founders who’ve faced the same challenges as you, including unicorn founders.

TOP INVESTORS

Meet hundreds of top investors at Investor day. Continue to receive warm introductions to the right investors during and after the sprint.

Investor Day 2022

See the 2022 cohort present live at Norrsken Investor Day 2022, at Norrsken House in Stockholm.

Click here

We’re proud to partner with Brilliant Minds to spotlight the most promising impact startups in Sweden. 10 selected Norrsken Impact Accelerator applicants will have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to present live on stage at Brilliant Minds 2022, to an audience of some of the world's most inspiring and influential leaders. Read more: www.brilliantminds.co/brilliant-innovators

Hire me

Selected works

01

Website design

2019
UI/UX design, Web building
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02

Real estate website

2019
UI/UX design, Web building
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03

Agency website

2019
UI/UX design, Web building
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04

Sweet house Branding

2019
Branding design
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THE Impact collective dedicated to make you win

There are some incredible people behind this initiative, rallying around the cause of supporting impact- startups. Find out more about the people involved in selecting and investing in the startups, and in mentoring and advising them.

MENTORS

Exclusively entrepreneurs we are deeply inspired by, who’ve built some of the fastest growing companies in the world. They are here to challenge you on your vision, to take your ambitions to the next level and to guide you in tackling your most pressing strategic questions.

MENTORS

Exclusively entrepreneurs we’re deeply inspired by, who’ve built some of the fastest growing companies in the world. They mentor the startups over summer.

ADVISORS

Fast-growth startup operatives, world class topic experts and top investors, who have a deep understanding of their respective areas. They are here to help you take deep dives at your specific questions, build your fundraising strategy and guide you on how to manage investor relations.  

Advisors

Razor sharp minds with expertise in specific areas. Scientists, investors, marketing gurus, operational experts. They are available for advice based on request by the startups.

01

$100 000 UPFRONT INVESTMENT

We target early-stage startups that leverage technology to create and scale innovative solutions to new and old societal and environmental challenges.

We invest $100k in them and then bring them to Stockholm for a dedicated 8 week sprint with mentorship from successful founders, including unicorn founders. The program will wrap up with Norrsken Impact Week - a week of events designed to introduce the startups to investors, talent and potential customers.
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02

8 WEEK SPRINT

We don’t think a fixed curriculum works - it’s too general and wastes precious time. You’ll get the advice you need based on your demands.

1:1s with Partners & Mentors. You’ll also get your own Lead Mentor with experience from your industry or sector. You’ll get advice, feedback, pitch training, connections and absolutely brutal honesty from the Partners and Mentors.
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03

UNICORN
MENTORS

Meet over X investors and pitch to them in an unconventional form of a traditional demo day, make connections and book investor meetings.

Meet potential customers among the corporates, public sector and international organisations we invite to Impact Week. Meet X talents at Talent Day and find your next employee.
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04

Sweet house Branding

2019
Branding design
Check detail

Who are we looking foor

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PITCH TO 300+ OF THE WORLD’S BEST INVESTORS

The sprint ends with Investor Day, to which we’ve invited 300 top international investors. Pitch to them, make connections and book investor meetings. Here are some of the investors you’ll meet.

Are you an investor curious to join? Join the waiting list here.

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The world’s most exciting tech startups • Solving the world’s greatest challenges • $100k investment • 8 week sprint in Stockholm • Unicorn founder mentors • All areas of impact but special focus on food-tech

WHAT WE ARE
LOOKING FOR

We target early-stage startups that leverage technology to create and scale innovative solutions to new and old societal and environmental challenges. 

We support startups in any area of impact and across all verticals. Each year, we’ll also highlight one or more verticals in which we’ll bring a little extra domain-specific expertise.

> Impact

We invest across all UN SDGs and do not limit ourselves to a specific vertical, but we demand that impact is intentional. We are looking for companies where impact is an intrinsic and non-negotiable part of the business model. When this is the case, we can give you the tools to manage your impact but focus on what we do best - helping you grow the business. You will further get support on measuring the impact of your business.

> Business model

We don’t think you need to sacrifice profit to make an impact. When impact is baked into your business, if you achieve financial success, your impact scales too. We’re looking for startups that have the potential to become impact unicorns - companies whose work will positively impact the lives of 1 billion people.

> Technology

Software or hardware, we invest in innovations that use technology as a tool in creating and scaling solutions.

> Stage

We’re ideally suited to supporting companies at an early stage (pre-seed to early-seed). This means you’ve identified a clear market opportunity and path to market with your product. You may have built or are building your MVP, you may have free-trial users or paying customers. Essentially, you’ve gone beyond just the idea and have something to show. However, we are happy to also support startups who have made more progress and fast-track your success from your base starting point.

> Geography

We accept companies from anywhere in the world. The accelerator takes place in Sweden. We require 2 co-founders from each startup to come to Stockholm for 8 weeks over the (European) summer to sprint on their businesses with our support. 

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The world’s most exciting tech startups • Solving the world’s greatest challenges • $100k investment • 8 week sprint in Stockholm • Unicorn founder mentors • All areas of impact but special focus on food-tech

the 8 week sprint

We don’t think a fixed curriculum works - it’s too general and wastes precious time. You’ll get the advice you need based on your demand.

Building a startup is hard. It’s a little easier if you get to bounce ideas and get advice from experienced, successful entrepreneurs. You’ll be given a lead co-founder mentoring you and a group of peer companies. You’ll also get your own lead mentor with experience from your industry or sector. You’ll get advice, feedback, pitch training, connections and total honesty from the co-founders and mentors.

> Peer group feedback sessions 

Advice and feedback from your peers can be just as valuable as from mentors. You’ll join a peer group with a handful of other startups, led by the same co-founder. Every couple of weeks, you’ll get together to discuss your progress, give each other feedback and suggestions, and keep each other accountable.

> Optional meetings with experts

We don’t want to waste your time with unnecessary meetings, so taking up the offer is entirely in your hands. If you find it useful, you’ll be able to book meetings with experts for domain-specific questions in areas like accounting, legal, marketing, or impact areas like clean energy, food science, medicine.

> Workspace adapted for crunchtime

The program will be tough. There’s no doubt about it. You’ll be working hard and sprinting fast. To do this, you’ll have 24/7 access to Norrsken House - a workspace built with entrepreneurs’ needs in focus. But it’s also about community - learning from and interacting with your peers. It may be the conversation by the coffee machine that’s the game-changer.

> Pizza nights with talks from inspirational founders

In the midst of the sprinting, there’s still time for a little fun, laughter and inspiration. We’ll bring in inspiring entrepreneurs to give short talks or Q&As, followed by dinner with your peers, co-founders, mentors, and other startups we think are great.

WHY STOCKHOLM?

>  We'll get you super cheap high-quality housing

We really do think it’s important for you to join us in Stockholm for the full 8 weeks. To help with this, we’ve arranged hugely discounted accommodation with the help of Norrsken’s amazing partner Strawberry Living. You’ll be living in top quality newly built apartments within easy distance of Norrsken House, to which you’ll have 24/7 access. We’ll make sure you receive your investment ahead of the sprint, so you can use that to cover the costs of coming to Stockholm.

> A beautiful place to spend the summer

Stockholm in summer is glorious. It’s a city filled with accessible nature and surrounded by clear blue water. In summer, the roads are blocked off to become walking streets, with cafes, restaurants and bars that spill out into the warm summer air.

Of course, you’ll spend most of your 8 weeks working, but there are great museums and the Swedish archipelago right around the corner for well-timed breaks.

> Europe's unicorn factory

With the most per capita unicorns outside of Silicon Valley, Stockholm has a thriving tech startup scene. It’s the perfect place to build connections and engage with other entrepreneurs to grow your business.

> The most sustainable country in the world

With heavy focus on impact and sustainability, you’ll find it easy to make connections interested in collaborating with impact tech startups and to learn from experts in the impact space.

> Highly engaged investors

With a high density of startups, Stockholm attracts a lot of attention from investors, both in and outside Sweden. Through Norrsken’s network, you’ll get to meet a lot of international investors focused on early-stage tech startups, and you’ll meet dedicated impact investors too.

> Norrsken House

We host the program at our hub Norrsken House in Stockholm because we think that being in the same place is essential to create the atmosphere needed to power your sprint. It could be one of those quick questions to your peers by the coffee machine or late nights at the “office” that make all the difference to your success.

13 Jan
Applications open
Apply early as we process applications on a rolling basis.
28 Feb
Deadline for applications
Don’t miss it!
25 July
8-weeks sprint starts
Arrive a little early and explore Stockholm. Once we start, it’ll be at full speed.
7 Sept
Investor
Investor Day
Take the next step & showcase your business to the best investors
(Date TBA)
Sprint
ends
Don’t worry, there’ll be a big party before we say our goodbyes.

The application period for 2022 is now closed. You are still free to apply for the program, but applications that came in before February 28th 2022 will be prioritised.


Application open 13th of January 2022. Fast-track your success by joining us. We’ll be processing applications on a rolling basis so we encourage you to apply early.

Deadline
28th of February 2022.

Still have questions? Join our Ask-Me-Anything-Sessions.
20th January, 15.00 CET [Click for link]
3rd February, 10.00 CET [Click for link]
17th February, 16.30 CET [Click for link]

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The world’s most exciting tech startups • Solving the world’s greatest challenges • $100k investment • 8 week sprint in Stockholm • Unicorn founder mentors • All areas of impact but special focus on food-tech

ACCELERATOR PORTFOLIO

High speed, full focus, relevant connections, great support & acceleration indeed. We now have an absolutely invaluable network of  advisors and investors.
Marcus Olsson
Founder & CEO of Cemvision, Alumni 2021
A crazy ride of incredible experiences. It really felt like we were invited to the room where it all happens.
William Berg
Founder & CEO of Cling Systems, Alumni 2021

VIEW PORTOLIO

In partnership with

FAQ


GENERAL QUESTIONS

> Read more about Norrsken

> What is the Norrsken Impact Accelerator?

We are an accelerator investing in the best startups solving the world’s biggest challenges.We target pre-seed to early-seed startups that leverage technology to create and scale innovative solutions to new and old societal and environmental challenges. 

We are sector agnostic and accept startups in any area of impact. We'll invest $125k in return for 7% of your company using a “post-money” Simple Agreement for Future Equity (the “YC Safe”). We invite the selected startups to Stockholm for a dedicated 8 week sprint with support from successful and experienced entrepreneurs, including unicorn founders. The program will culminate in an iconic investor demo day, when startups pitch to hundreds of investors and potential customers.

> Who is involved?

Unicorn founders, world class entrepreneurs, investors, experts and partners that comprise the Impact Collective. Norrsken Impact Accelerator is backed by Norrsken Foundation.

> Why is Norrsken doing this?

At Norrsken, we believe that tech entrepreneurs are essential for creating solutions that will enable us to solve some of the biggest global problems of our time.  Part of what we do is to help these entrepreneurs get their solutions out quicker, because the world can’t afford to wait. 

We also do this to showcase the fact that creating solutions that positively impact the world and making a lot of money are compatible. In fact, in the world we live in today, it is impact companies that will be the Facebooks of tomorrow. We need more capital and talent to enter the SDG market. We showcase both the impact and financial potential in impact startups to further this cause.

> What is your goal?

Our goal is find the next generation of unicorns with impact fully integrated into their business models. 
Profit is a powerful means to achieving global scale. This is why we focus on investing in start-ups that can become highly profitable businesses, able to roll out their solutions globally.

And when impact is integral to the business model, an extra unit of revenue generates an extra unit of impact. As the company grows, so does its impact. And if it becomes a unicorn, its impact will be massive.

> What happens during the Norrsken Impact Accelerator?

- You start off by getting $125k of investment.
- You join us in Stockholm for an 8 week sprint at Norrsken House.
- You’ll have 24/7 access to workspace designed with tech entrepreneurs in mind to crunch, crunch, crunch.
- You’ll have 1-1 sessions every other week with your seasoned entrepreneurs, world class investors and experts.
- You’ll have peer group sessions to update each other on your progress, hold each other accountable and give each other feedback.
- You’ll have the option to join group sessions, such as Ask-Me-Anything sessions with unicorn founders, learning sessions with UNDP experts. 
- You’ll be invited to pizza nights every other week with inspiring speakers giving short talks or Q&As, your peers, mentors, and other startups we think are great.
- You’ll have pitch training with star names.
- Finally, you'll pitch to hundreds of investors at Investor Demo Day.
- We’ll have a final celebration at the end of Week 8, but it’s not goodbye. We’ll continue to support you as alumni with a platform for getting peer advice and feedback, investor and partner connections.



INVESTMENT & ELIGIBILITY

> What are you looking for in startups?

1. Impact
We invest across all UN SDGs and do not limit ourselves to a specific vertical, but we demand that impact is intentional. We are looking for companies where impact is built into the product, so that as your business grows, your impact automatically follows. When this is the case, we’ll give you the tools to manage your impact but we can focus on what we do best - helping you grow the business.

2. Business model
We believe that you don’t need to sacrifice profit to make an impact. And when impact is baked into your business, if you achieve financial success, you’ve almost certainly created a lot of impact too. So we’re looking for companies that, if successful, will become unicorns.

3. Technology
Software or hardware, we invest in innovations that use technology as a tool in creating and scaling solutions. 

4. Stage
Because of the terms of our investment, we’re ideally suited to supporting companies at an early (pre-seed) stage. This means you’ve identified a clear market opportunity and path to market with your product. You may have built or be building your MVP, but you’ve gone beyond just the idea and have something to show. However, we are happy to support startups who have made more progress and fast-track your success from your base starting point. 

5. Geography
We are based in Sweden and ask startups to come to Stockholm for 8 weeks over the (European) summer to sprint on their businesses with our support. However, we are looking for companies from anywhere in the world. 

> How much do you invest in startups joining the program?

We invest using standardised deal terms. We invest $125k in return for 7% of your company using a “post-money” Simple Agreement for Future Equity (the “YC Safe”).

> Are the investments terms fixed?

Yes, up to 20 startups that are selected will receive an upfront investment of $125,000 in exchange for 7% equity. These investment terms are fixed.

> Does Norrsken invest in follow-on rounds?

No. We don’t do follow-on investments for two reasons: 
1. We want to give you full control over your cap table and allow you to choose who invests in your company and how much equity they take. 
2. If we were to do follow-on investments, we’d only be able to follow-on in a handful of companies from each batch. We don’t want to affect the ability of any of our portfolio companies to raise future rounds by a negative signalling effect. We’d rather avoid this altogether for the time being.

> Do you only invest in certain areas/sectors?

We are sector agnostic, and impact sector agnostic. We focus on finding the most promising startups within various sectors and helping them to scale. As long as you’re using technology and you’re solving a big societal or environmental problem, we’d love to hear from you. 

> Can I apply with a hardware solution? 

Yes, we love supporting impact across all verticals and do not limit the type of solutions we are looking for. It is true that hardware solutions can take longer to develop and scale than software solutions. However, if you’re a great team working hard on a solution that can change the world, you should apply.

> Will you sign an NDA? How do I know you won’t steal my idea?

No, we won’t sign a NDA, but will informally commit to confidentiality. It’s typical for investors not to sign NDAs to enable us to consider every startup that applies and to roll out investments quickly.

> Will you fund multiple startups in the same sector?

Yes. As long as you’re not working on identical products, we’re happy to support startups working in the same sector.

> Can NGOs or NPOs apply?

No, this accelerator is targeting for-profit companies making an impact through their business models. NGOs and NPOs are incredibly important in driving societal and environmental change. But for this accelerator, we are only focusing on impact startups.

> We have already taken in funding. Can we still apply?

Yes. As long as you’re happy with our investment terms, we’re happy to hear from you regardless if you have investments from elsewhere or not.

> I’m a single person team. Can I still apply?

Yes. We’d rather fund teams than single co-founders, because we think your chances of success are greater with a co-founder, but we’ll still consider strong individual founders.

> Can the same founder or team apply with multiple ideas or companies?

Yes, you are welcome to submit more than one application, as long as each solution fits the criteria we are looking for.

> We don’t want funding, can we still join the program?

No. Besides funding, we think there’s a lot of value in joining the program. And by investing in you, we’re fully aligning our incentives to help you succeed.

> If we participated in another accelerator, can we do Norrsken Impact Accelerator?

Yes. Especially if you’ve been through a venture-building program, you’ll be at the right stage to join us after this. If you’ve been through another program and are at a slightly later stage, we’ll aim to fast-track your progress from your starting point.

> We've already been working on our startup for a while. Is it worth us joining?

Yes! As long as you’ve gone beyond just the idea and have something to show, you’re the right stage for us, and we’re happy to support startups that have made more progress. However, we will take into account how long you’ve been working on your startup relative to how far you’ve come. So if you’ve been working on your startup for a long time and have little to show for it, you should explain why that has been the case.


APPLYING

> How does the application process work?

You apply by filling in this application form. We process the applications on a rolling basis. The sooner you apply, the better. We will invite you to one or two short interviews during the process.

Second stage application - video requirement
s:
If you are selected to the second stage we will ask you to link a video where you get the opportunity to present yourselves, your idea and why it matters. The video should be around one minute and without any fancy editing or background music, only you in the founding team should be speaking. We prefer if all the cofounders participate. You can record the video on your phone, laptop or in a Zoom-call, just make sure that we can hear you clearly. If you upload it to Youtube and don’t want other people to see it, please mark it as ‘unlisted’.

> When can I expect to hear if I was selected for the accelerator?

The teams that win a spot in the accelerator will receive an offer from us on the 6th May the latest. 

> How long does it take to fill in the application?

We’ve timed it. It shouldn’t take longer than 30 minutes to fill in the application, assuming that you have prepared the necessary material (e.g. the 1-min video) in advance.

> Is there a word limit to the application?

Yes, you’ll see a world limit on individual questions. The word limit is not there as a guideline, just as a maximum. If in doubt, less is more. We’d also prefer you not to use jargon or high-flying language. Keep it plain and simple, and we’ll be happy.

> What are the second stage video application requirements?

In the application form, you are asked to provide a link to a video where you get the opportunity to present yourselves, your idea and why it matters. The video should be around one minute and without any fancy editing or background music, only you in the founding team should be speaking. We prefer if all the cofounders participate. You can record the video on your phone, laptop or in a Zoom-call, just make sure that we can hear you clearly. If you upload it to Youtube and don’t want other people to see it, please mark it as ‘unlisted’.

> What is the deadline for submitting a late application?

The deadline for ordinary applications was February 28. We’ll keep allowing teams to submit late applications after that until the full batch has been announced later this spring, but late applications will be reviewed after all the applications that were submitted before the deadline have been screened. In other words, the later you submit your application, the harder it is to get into the Norrsken Impact Accelerator.”


MORE ABOUT THE SPRINT

> Is there a program fee?

No, there’s no program fee. We’re covering the cost of the program because we want you to be able to use the investment to directly cover the costs required to launch or grow your business. We think this investment should give you a runway for around 6 months, by which time you should be able to secure your next investment round with our support.

> What value can I expect to get if I join the accelerator program?

- Investment of $125K for 7% equity (post-money)
- World class entrepreneurs as mentors who understands the challenges you’re facing and can give you the right advice to launch and grow your business
- Network - connections through the distinguished impact collective
- Warm intros to investors - outside of meeting investors at Demo Day, we’ll also provide introductions to specific investors where we see a good match

> Who will be my mentor?

Mentors will be given a choice of startups within the area of their expertise, and you’ll be matched with multiple mentors who can help you to grow.

> Am I guaranteed a unicorn founder mentor if I join the program?

Yes. And no. Every startup who joins us will have a dedicated mentor during the time they are with us. Some of these are unicorn founders, others are founders of currently fast-growing startups. Some are experienced entrepreneurs who are now working in investing and advisory capacities. Others are active in their companies today. They all bring different things to the table. You might be matched with unicorn founders for 1:1 sessions or get to ask your questions during Ask Me Anything sessions.

> What happens after the program is completed?

In the last week, you’ll attend Investor Demo Day and meet investors and, if relevant, potential customers. And of course, we can’t forget one epic final celebration. After this, you’ll join our alumni network. We’ll keep pretty close contact over the next few months and support you if you’re raising a new round in that time. You’ll remain part of our alumni network for life, and will have the ability to reach out to your peers, future participants, mentors and advisors.

> How do you help companies raise money outside of the program investment?

We have a dedicated week at the end of the program to help power your success, where we introduce you to investors at Demo Day and afterwards. We’ll give warm introductions to investors outside of this setting too. Before Demo Day, we’ll work on your pitch, and you’ll get advice, and honest feedback from mentors, co-founders and pitch coaches.

> Can we do the program without coming to Stockholm?

No, we really do want you to join us in Stockholm. We think that being in the same place for 8 weeks and interacting with your peers is essential to create the atmosphere needed to power your sprint. It could be one of those quick questions to your peers by the coffee machine or late nights at the “office” that make all the difference to your success. That’s why we’re bringing you to Stockholm for the summer rather than doing this virtually. However, you are allowed to rotate the founders who are in Stockholm during this period if necessary.


OTHER PRACTICALITIES

> Who pays for accommodation and transportation?

We ask you to cover the costs of transport and living during the 8-week sprint. From our side, we’ll make sure that you receive the $125k investment at the beginning of the program, so you can use this to cover travel and accommodation costs if necessary. Our accommodation partner will help lower these costs by providing entrepreneurs in our program with a large discount on accommodation.

> Can you help us get visas?

We’ll help you apply for visas if needed.

> What language will be used at the accelerator?

The official language that will be used in the accelerator is English.

> I want to help! Can I become a mentor or advisor?

Fantastic! If you want to become a mentor or help advise the startups within Norrsken’s ecosystem, please share some more details about yourself, your background and interests through this form. We will then get back to you within a few weeks.

> Can I get in touch?

If you’d like to get in touch, send us an email at accelerator@norrsken.org. We won’t be able to respond to requests for updates on ongoing applications or be able to connect on calls, but we’ll do our very best to get back regarding other queries and written questions. Alternatively, you can join any of the three Ask-Me-Anything sessions on the 20 January, 3 February, and 17 February

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