[Made in Suède] Launch of FrenchTech Nordics: 3 questions to its co-founder Antoine Heftler
The French Tech initiative, launched in 2014, is booming and now brings together a collective of French startups and startups from all over the world. Even if Sweden is recognized as the European capital of startups, it is still not considered or labeled as a French Tech hub. An anomaly that Antoine Heftler and his volunteer collaborators want to resolve by launching the La French Tech Nordics initiative.
For FrenchWeb, I went to meet him at Tieto’s headquarters in Stockholm, where he works.
Hi Antoine, you have just launched French Tech Nordics, can you explain the origin of this project and its main mission?
It all started with a Tweet in 2015. Initially, the Twitter account relayed information about French and Swedish Tech, but the enthusiasm was not really there. It was after a meeting with Axelle Lemaire in 2017 that we decided to bring together the Nordic countries to attract a wider audience. The mission of French Tech Nordics is based on the founding pillars of French Tech: federate, accelerate, and shine. We want to create a bridge between the dynamic ecosystem of the Nordic countries and France. We realize on the spot that the Scandinavian market is often misunderstood by France and French start-ups, and vice versa. But there are many possible synergies between the two regions and we would like to simplify this exchange.
We want to create a bridge between the dynamic ecosystem of the Nordic countries and France
Who is La French Tech Nordics primarily for?
French Tech for us is a new way of being a citizen, it is belonging to a group that has a common goal. We are aimed at French and French people who have a relationship with technology through their professions or their studies and who have an interest or an affiliation with Scandinavia. Concretely, we bring together a fairly wide range of members ranging from investors through partner brands to people looking for a job. We want to use our platform and our channels to facilitate networking and accelerate opportunities.
French Tech is a new way of being a citizen
What means do you have and what can we expect from French Tech Nordics?
For the moment, we are a team of four people and we act completely on a voluntary basis. Frederic Hasbani is in charge of Denmark, Cyril Barrow of Finland, Bertrand Maugain of Norway and I of Sweden. We are not yet labeled, but the objective is to show that the Nordic-Baltic axis is an active and very interesting hub for France. We already have a good number of events planned in collaboration with the local Business France teams. We also want to involve our community by encouraging them to communicate on our site or by helping them to create their own events to promote French Tech in Stockholm, Copenhagen, Oslo and Helsinki.
Erwan Derlyn, is a digital strategy consultant for a start-up.
French expat, based in Sweden since 2008, Erwan began his career in an agency before joining the start-up iZettle between 2013 and 2016.
Now independent, he works with some of the fastest growing companies in Europe in FinTech, music, fashion, design, and healthcare.
Erwan Derlyn is the FrenchWeb correspondent in Stockholm. Each month, he presents start-ups from the region and comments on the dynamic ecosystem of the Swedish capital.