How to make start-ups a success

President & CEO Lars Thinggaard talks about how Danish startups can become a success.


It is possible to be a successful start-up in Denmark, says Lars Thinggaard, commenting on the ongoing debate in Denmark about challenging conditions for Danish start-ups.

“Danish companies need to have the self-confidence it requires to create international successes. They must engage themselves with the numerous international private equity and venture funds that often have a fondness of our Scandinavian capabilities such as innovation, creativity and Scandinavian management philosophy,” says Lars Thinggaard, and continues:

“Milestone Systems has held on to our Danish roots, and we’re proud of them – but we still have an international profile […] Milestone was established in 1998 with DKK 125,000 in the pocket and brought in one of Europe’s highest rated private equity funds in 2008, Index Ventures. In 2014, we sold our company to Canon but remained a stand-alone company. This means that we have remained a company with deep roots in Denmark, and today the price of the asset that Canon invested in four years ago is in the much-coveted unicorn segment (a valuation of +1 billion USD),” says Lars Thinggaard, and concludes:

“If Danish venture funds seem reluctant to invest in start-ups, then the start-ups should turn to the international funds and keep their start-up success on Danish soil. It is possible!”


Lars Thinggaard's opinion piece was orginally published in Danish business paper Børsen.