I have just got back from spending a week in Sweden. We went over to meet a few people, firstly I met some potential sales partners, where we discussed the significant opportunity in the Baltic / Scandinavian countries. Sweden is a truly remarkable country, with stunning countryside and a vibrant business culture in the cities. The countries view of branding and start ups is really interesting. Despite having one of the worlds highest concentration of unicorn start ups, including Skype, King (make Candy Crush), Absolute Vodka, Spotify, H&M, Electrolux and Mojang.
There is a clear sense, that they understand the is of their country and whilst are patriotic and proud, they are very keen to build their brands and work overseas. This sense of international expansion feels as though it stems from the Viking attitude of moving as far away as quickly as possible to broaden the horizons of what is in fact a very small (population wise) country. This is an attitude I think Britain, and now with the developing countries, the USA would do well to embrace.
Part of the time I spent in Sweden was to meet the branding guru Thomas Gad, who has a long and illustrious career marketing companies we now all see as commonplace. His first big success was launching Nokia, when they first went into mobile phones, making them the third most valuable brand in the world, having been previously unlisted. He has also worked with Sir Richard Branson and countless other recognisable brands. I am delighted to announce that Thomas has joined the board of Gas-Sense as our marketing director. I am sure you will hear more on this later.