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Enterprise-focused startups on the rise in Nordics

Tech startups focused on the enterprise sector are attending the Slush startup event in increasing numbers

In its sixth Finnish startup event, Slush has cemented its position as one of Northern Europe’s go-to tech events. Slush 2017 gathered 2,600 startups in Helsinki with an increasing number of business-to-business (B2B) tech startups present.

Here are three promising Nordic startups in the B2B sector from Slush 2017:

Supermetrics

Analytics company Supermetrics has found its niche by making marketers’ lives easier. Its software-as-a-service (SaaS) product pulls together online marketing data from more than 40 platforms and automatically exports it to Microsoft Excel, Google Sheets and Google Data Studios, which enables Twitter and Facebook data to be compared, for example.

“We minimise manual work and automate gathering all relevant information in one place,” Jouni Hyötylä, head of customers at Supermetrics, told Computer Weekly.  

Founded in 2013, the Finnish startup has grown fast. It now has 150,000 users – including the BBC, Dyson, Red Cross, Unicef and Warner Brothers – in 110 countries, as well as attaining official partner status from Google Data Studios. 

Supermetrics is looking to expand its software’s reporting capabilities after closing a €3.5m funding round in November.

Iris AI

Startup Iris AI, which was founded in 2016, has harnessed artificial intelligence (AI) to process scientific research.

“We have an abundance of research and scientific literature today. The problem is our human brains are limited so we can’t read and understand everything,” said CEO Anita Schjøll Brede during the company’s Slush presentation.

Iris AI’s “science assistant” reads through research papers, highlights relevant findings and suggests other related papers pertinent to a researcher’s field of study. The Oslo-based startup said it can reduce the time spent on this part of the scientific process by 90%.

“The tool understands scientific text through ‘fingerprinting’ a document; identifying key words, contextual synonyms and topic descriptive words and weighting them for importance to the context,” Schjøll Brede told Computer Weekly. “In this way, we bypass the limits of human-made keywords, human-made taxonomies and the citation system.”

Iris AI offers a free tool for individual researchers and a premium version for corporate research and development departments. The company said it already works with dozens of clients, including global energy and pharma companies.

The startup also has a network of around 8,000 volunteers in its AI trainer community, helping to develop its software into a fully fledged AI research product.

Varjo Technologies

Varjo Technologies, arguably the biggest launch at Slush, is a 15-month old Finnish virtual reality (VR) startup with founders from Nokia and Microsoft. Its breakthrough is bringing resolution as sharp as the human eye into virtual reality and mixed reality headsets.

Varjo said its “bionic display” offers 70 times the resolution of current VR glasses, such as Oculus Rift and HTC Vive. The demo, which was publicly shown for the first time at Slush, looked highly promising.

Instead of VR favourite gaming, Varjo’s focus is at least initially on the professional market. The company believes high-resolution VR will open up new user cases in design, engineering and training simulations.

Backing this up, Varjo also used Slush to announce new partnerships, including Airbus, Audi, BMW, Technicolor and 20th Century Fox. The company expects to start shipping beta prototypes of its headset to partners in early 2018 in preparation for a commercial launch later in the year.

Read more about startups in the Nordic region

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