Amsterdam startup scene

It’s not hard to understand the reason Amsterdam is known as the startup capital of Europe! There are so many thriving new businesses in the Dutch capital, including Adyen, Elastic and Booking.com. Some of the reasons to choose Amsterdam as a base for your business expansion or European startup include:

– It’s an attractive city in which to live and work, with a huge pool of international work talent to draw on for recruitment purposes. The city has an amazing history and a compact size, making it easy to travel between different areas. English is widely spoken so communication is generally not an issue for English speakers.

– Amsterdam is a tech-savvy city, so it’s not surprising companies like Tesla, NextDoor and Netflix chose this location as a European HQ

– Amsterdam has a great infrastructure and connectivity with other major European cities, like Paris, London, Berlin and Stockholm which makes it easy to grow any business. The capital is also home to one of the highest broadband concentrations in the world

Setting up a business in Amsterdam

Amsterdam is ideal for startups as business costs are remarkably low. KPMG highlight that the Netherlands is one of the top countries for low business location costs, particularly in the digital arena and for research and development.

Starting up a business in Amsterdam is remarkably easy. If you’re based outside the EU you can apply for a Startup Visa and will just need an innovative business plan in place and the available financial resources to prove you can exist for at least a year in the Netherlands. What’s more, there are a variety of innovation incentives and R&D tax credits available to provide even more incentive to grow your new business in Amsterdam.

When you initially start up your business you need to pay €50 to register at the local Chamber of Commerce, although incorporated businesses (like a BV) will need to pay for a notarial deed, which costs around €300. It’s not essential to have startup capital prior to registering a BV, either.

Once your startup is registered with the Chamber of Commerce, all details are automatically passed on to the Tax and Customs Administration, known as Belastingdienst. The business is then issued a VAT registration number.

The corporate income tax rate in the Netherlands is 20% on the first €200,000 of business profits, with 25% due on any profits over this amount.

If you’re planning an international expansion, you should get in touch with Goodwille! We’re experts in helping businesses expand to the UK and can provide advice and support with everything you need for a successful expansion. 

Advice for launching a fintech startup in London

If you’re looking to expand your international fintech business or start up a new venture in the London area, you are probably already aware that London is known as the world’s fintech capital. It is an attractive startup location for foreign businesses wanting to expand internationally, and the most popular destination for Asian and American companies expanding into Europe.

Goodwille specialises in assisting international businesses set up companies in the UK. Check out our advice for setting up a fintech company in the UK:

UK business climate

Despite Brexit, the UK startup scene is thriving and many businesses still look to London to launch European operations. The UK government offers comprehensive guidance for overseas businesses thinking about launching in the UK.

Setting up a UK company

Setting up a UK company is a pretty straight-forward and quick process. Company incorporation is done via Companies House, UK’s registrar of companies, which is responsible for holding information about all companies in the UK. Albeit the incorporation process in itself is simple, we recommend you seek specialist advice to make sure your company is set up with Articles of Association, minutes and other legal essentials. Goodwille’s Corporate Legal department can help with setting up a UK entity and help with ongoing compliance for your UK company.

Payroll issues

If you plan to employ workers in your company, you will also need to be registered for UK PAYE. PAYE, pay-as-you-earn, is the system used for the deduction of income tax and National Insurance contributions. The UK is in the process of making tax digital, so it is important to opt for a payroll provider that can meet all required obligations, now and in the future. Statutory pension contributions may also need to be deducted from employee salaries and your business is likely to be required to contribute towards employee pensions, too. Goodwille specialise in payroll and pension and can answer any questions about payroll or pension requirements in the UK.

Potential grants or funding

The UK offers access to a mature and streamlined business grants and funding sector. London fintech providers could well qualify for R&D tax credits or other funding awarded by Innovate UK.

Goodwille can help you launch your London fintech business. We offer legal, finance, HR, payroll and insurance advice to ensure your new company meets all UK requirements. Get in touch with us today to find out more.

The tech problems that startups will address in 2019

Each year, evolving demands for technology-based solutions and emerging worldwide trends create a set of problems that tech startups look to solve in innovative and exciting ways, making them financial successes and disruptors on a global scale.

As we dive into 2019, these are some of the tech areas that we predict tech startups will try to address this year.

Blockchain technology

Bitcoin’s blockchain network is frequently criticised for requiring hugely intensive computing power in order to run. A recent study by Elite Fixtures discovered that in South Korea, one of the world’s leading Bitcoin hubs, the cost of electricity to mine a single Bitcoin is $26,000. In addition to these costs, the cost of setting up and maintaining a blockchain network.

Moving forward, startups will need to look at how they can improve cost and time efficiency for blockchain systems. If this is achieved, cryptocurrencies have a real chance of becoming adopted as a legitimate form of tender for many more companies and customers globally, as the benefits will outweigh the costs to a much greater degree.

Internet of Things

There are currently around 14 billion devices connected to the internet, and this is due to rise in the coming years as the Internet of Things drives innovation and convenience in people’s everyday lives.

Voice-activated devices have begun to have a meaningful presence in people’s homes, but the technology can often be unreliable, inaccurate and expensive, leading to a poor user experience overall. Startups that can create connected devices that are affordable to all demographics and which boast seamless command tools will enjoy a hugely successful 2019.

Payments

Card payments have overtaken cash in 2018 for the first time, but consumers want even more when it comes to paying for their goods. While in stores, contactless cards are all well and good, but the speed and simplicity are nullified if shoppers are still made to wait in lengthy queues to pay.

Technology that allows shoppers to pay for their shopping on-the-go or automatically in stores, creating a fully interactive and swift shopping experience, will be a major trend moving forward in retail. Startups that can produce the necessary technology to create completely frictionless shopping experiences will be successful in 2019 and beyond.

Goodwille has helped some of the hottest Nordic tech startups with starting up in the UK. If you need help with launching your tech startup in the UK, get in touch with Goodwille today.

Get to know the speakers!

Expand to England – Event on scaling up and market entry to the UK

Slush Helsinki is the world’s leading startup event, gathering over 20,000 techies with one common goal – to celebrate entrepreneurship, making a sustainable and positive impact through tech, and facilitate meetings between companies and entrepreneurs of the future.

Slush takes place on 4-5 December in and around Helsinki, along with several side events taking place all around the Finland’s capital. Goodwille, together with Department for International Trade, are proud to host the Slush side event EXPAND TO ENGLAND on the 4th of December. The event will provide companies with everything they need to expand internationally.

About the event

Hosted by Goodwille and the Department for International Trade, EXPAND TO ENGLAND will provide you with everything you need to succeed in the UK. Attendees will learn how to raise investment, how to promote yourself internationally, and how avoid the pitfalls many others have fallen into.

This event is for startups, SME’s, entrepreneurs and businesses looking to establish in the UK, as well as mentors and advisors helping tech businesses succeed on UK’s tech scene. It will be an interactive seminar with experts on international expansion, followed by networking and 1-2-1 sessions with the experts.

About the speakers

Goodwille help businesses from the Nordic region expand into and scale in the UK. Goodwille have over 20 years of experience supporting businesses with all the essential services needed to operate on the UK market. They know what’s needed to run a UK business, and this knowledge combined with understanding how business works in your home market makes the move from the Nordics to the UK smooth. Let Goodwille take care of the practical UK side of your business while you focus on your core business!

DIT – Department for International Trade is an international economic department of the UK government, operating to secure UK and global prosperity by promoting and financing international trade and investment, championing free trade. The responsibilities of the Department include bringing together policy, promotion and financial expertise to break down barriers to trade and investment and promoting British trade and investment across the world. This includes helping foreign businesses locate in the UK, as well as helping UK businesses expand overseas. In Finland, the free of charge and confidential services of the UK Department for International Trade (DIT) are available for those companies that are looking to set up a subsidiary, expand their current operations or carry out R&D in the UK.

Business Finland is an accelerator of global growth by helping businesses go global and supporting and funding innovations. Their top experts and the latest research data enable companies to seize market opportunities and turn them into success stories. Business Finland aims to develop Finland to be the most attractive and competitive innovation environment in which companies are able to grow, change, and succeed.

Rochester PR are specialist in market entry who advise international clients and brands on successfully entering the UK market. Whilst Rochester delivers all that you would expect from an agency in terms of its services for example media relations campaigns; social media and influencer campaigns; event management; content creation and marketing, it recognises that market entry clients are different. They require specialist advice and a flexible approach.  Everything Rochester does is about getting your brand to be better known and understood, helping deliver more business.

Jester is a premier executive coaching and leadership development company that works with some of the fastest growing companies in the Nordics on change. Jester helps CEOs and their management teams to boost growth through leadership and manage change within the company.

EVENT DETAILS

Date: 4 December 2018
Venue: Meeting Park Forum, 20 B Mannerheimintie, 00100 Helsinki
Time: 17:00 – 20:00

17:00 Registration
17:30 – 19:00 Seminars with Q&A
19:00 – 20:00 Networking, Drinks & Nibbles with 1 – 2 – 1

NSAwards Grand Finale

Nordic Startup Awards Grand Finale 2018 took place on the 30th October, and Goodwille as Nordic Partners of the NSAwards were of course on site in Copenhagen to celebrate the best of Nordic startups and entrepreneurs. Our Marketing Manager James Service gave a run down on the Awards, and below he reveals the highlights of the show and the startups and entrepreneurs that stood out extra among the best of the best Nordic businesses. 

It was a cold, wet and dreary Tuesday night in Copenhagen. But it was the Nordic Startup Awards Grand Finale, and Goodwille (a Nordic Partner) are one of a few service providers joining the elite in Nordic Tech at the Østre Gasværk Teater.

It’s got everything you could want from an awards ceremony, but it’s wrapped in an energy and warmth generated by the finalists. There is talk of collaboration not competition, with Thorbjorg Helga Vigfusdottir, winner of the people’s choice asking the other Nordic Countries to help her in raising the profile of Iceland.

For me, there were a few winners and speeches which really stood out, and I wanted to share them with you.

Best HealthTech Startup – Nightingale Health

Nightingale Health, a healthcare startup from Finland who are disrupting and revolutionising the healthcare sector – or, as their CEO put it, the sickcare sector. Nightingale Health are creating pioneering products for the active prevention of lifestyle diseases, with their blood testing technology providing 50 times more data than current solutions.

We heard their CEO speak earlier in a panel, and he asked the audience “What’s better than someone offering you $1Billion for your company?”.

“Telling them no”, he replied.

An excited Finn isn’t something found very often, but this guy was inspiring, warming and oozing with the entrepreneur mentality. Sadly Nightingale Health missed out on the Startup of the Year award, but we are excited to see them later this year at SLUSH.

Ecosystem Hero of the Year – Sissel Hansen

Sissel Hansen, the founder of the book series Startup Guide (available at good book stores, online and at the Goodwille offices) got the biggest cheer of the night from the crowd. An emotional speech in which she declared she was “passionate about passionate people”. Sissel launched her book series with no knowledge of publishing, but she had no problems telling the “expert” publisher who joined her on the journey that’s not how they were going to do it. She made it clear that if you do what you’ve always done, you’re going to get the same results. You could see how much it meant to both Sissel and the crowd for her to be recognised with this accolade; and for that, it was one of my highlights.

Best AI/Machine Learning Startup – Corti

An AI assistant that helps emergency service call takers better diagnose patients. Corti analyses everything the caller says and shares. The platform is used by the emergency services in Copenhagen right now and helping to save lives. The recipient of the award said he couldn’t wait to take it back to the team who were still working, in their basement, at 9pm. Whilst we all gathered to celebrate their success, the people who built it work tirelessly to improve it, for our future benefit – it’s this passion and commitment that’s inspiring.

Saga Robotics, who see Brexit as an opportunity for their robotic fruit picking business picked up the award for best Foodtech Agritech Startup. Whilst 657 Oslo, the home to over 225 talented individuals beat Maria01 and Minc to the prize of Best Coworking Space.

For the startups, it’s the recognition. They spend long hours, days and years, working on disrupting or revolutionising an industry that they are passionate about, with no guarantees of success. And it’s their commitment to their product which makes our world easier, more comfortable, safer or healthier.

For us it was a privilege to join the Grand Finale, and we look forward to developing our partnership with the Nordic Startup Awards, and supporting many of their winners and finalists, both past and present, with their future UK Market Entry.

Find out more about the Nordic Startup Awards & Goodwille by reading our partnership press release here.

In the picture: all regional winners at the NSAwards Grand Finale 2018

How socially-minded startups are changing the world of business

The nature of startups has changed. A 2018 study by the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor revealed that one third of all startups are set up with a social or environmental focus rather than purely looking to make a profit.

What’s changed?

The change has been fuelled by young, socially-minded entrepreneurs who have had it with the moral failings of companies that they’ve grown up with. It’s been a decade since the Great Recession, when the incompetency and greed of Wall Street bankers sent the world into meltdown, and it seems that the start-up community have taken it upon themselves to create a new style of business leadership, and change what it means to be a ‘business’.

Examples of successful social enterprises are shoe company TOMS, who donate a pair of shoes to a child in need for every pair they sell, and London-based Soap Co., who employ blind, disabled and disadvantaged people to manufacture their body care products.

Of course, these new startups aren’t charities. They still look to make a profit, and the entrepreneurs who head them up still want to have long and illustrious business careers. But the question that is asked now among start-up communities isn’t simply how much money you can make; it’s how disruptive you can be.

This disruption comes in more traditional forms, such as re-defining an industry by finding a niche in the market or changing consumer habits by providing simple solutions to complex problems, but now social enterprises seek another form of disruption as an indicator of success: how much can you better the lives of disadvantaged people?

The creation of social enterprises

The UK government currently facilitates the creation of social enterprises by offering grants, and loans are available from banks such as NatWest and Triodos to help socially and environmentally conscious entrepreneurs to set up UK businesses.

All over the world, communities should be smiling at the good intentions of these young business people who are rallying against the profit hungry corporations that hold so much influence over global trade. We can only hope that these big business giants take note of how social enterprises are redefining how businesses should behave. If they do, the world will become a much better place.

If you are looking at setting up a business in the UK, Goodwille can help you take care about the practical business aspects of your UK operation. This means that you can focus on disrupting the UK market and making the world a better place while we make sure you are good to go and comply with necessary regulations in the UK. Get in touch with us today to hear more about how we can support your startup.

Expand to England – Slush 2018 Side Event

Slush Helsinki is the world’s leading startup event, gathering over 20,000 techies with one common goal – to celebrate entrepreneurship, making a sustainable and positive impact through tech, and facilitate meetings between companies and entrepreneurs of the future.

This year, Slush takes place 4-5 December in and around Helsinki. It’s a mix of a festival and conference only dedicated to tech, with several side events taking place all around the Finnish capital. Goodwille together with DIT – Department for International Trade are proud to host the Slush side event EXPAND TO ENGLAND on the 4th December. The event will provide startups with everything they need to expand abroad!

EXPAND TO ENGLAND

Are you ready to take your business out of the Nordics to the UK or other European markets?
Are you ready to scale your team and expand internationally?

Join this SLUSH side event with speakers responsible for helping some of Finland’s fastest growing tech companies scale into the UK!

The UK is repeatedly ranked one of the best locations for European businesses looking to expand internationally – it has access to a pool of talent, capital and investors, it boosts a large tech community and it is perfectly located in the middle of time zones. The UK is also a big gateway through which to enter the US market.

Hosted by Goodwille and the Department for International Trade, EXPAND TO ENGLAND will provide you with everything you need to succeed in the UK. Attendees will learn how to raise investment, how to promote yourself internationally, and how avoid the pitfalls many others have fallen into.

This event is for startups, SME’s, entrepreneurs and businesses looking to establish in the UK, as well as mentors and advisors helping tech businesses succeed on UK’s tech scene. It will be an interactive seminar with experts on international expansion, followed by networking and 1-2-1 sessions with the experts.

EVENT DETAILS

Date: 4 December 2018
Venue: Meeting Park Forum, 20 B Mannerheimintie, 00100 Helsinki
Time: 17:00 – 20:00
Registration: The event is free of charge but requires registration. Grab your free ticket HERE!

ABOUT THE EVENT HOSTS

Goodwille help businesses from the Nordic region expand into and scale in the UK. We have over 20 years of experience supporting businesses with all the essential services needed to operate on the UK market. We know what’s needed to run a UK business, and this knowledge combined with understanding how business works in your home market makes the move from the Nordics to the UK smooth. Let us take care of the practical UK side of your business while you focus on your core business!

DIT – Department for International Trade is the UK government agency for international trade, economy and investment. If you want to expand into the UK, DIT can provide you with market and sector data that will facilitate your entry to the UK.

Nordic Startup Awards announces Goodwille as a strategic UK partner

Press release 3 October 2018.

Clever Nordic businesses have spent the past five years battling it out to be crowned the Nordic Startup Awards, Startup of the Year. The Nordic Startup Awards maps, connects, promotes and celebrates the Nordic startup ecosystem, across all five countries, internally in the region as well as to the rest of the world.

NSAwards are excited to announce Goodwille as their strategic UK based Nordic Partner. Goodwille, whose roots are firmly tied to the Nordic countries have helped hundreds of tech businesses, including regional & national finalists of the Nordic Startup Awards, enter the UK market.

Kim Balle, Co-Founder & CEO of the Nordic Startup Awards says “It’s exciting to have Goodwille onboard as a Nordic Partner. Goodwille have an unrivalled track record of helping Nordic businesses with their expansion to the UK, and their experience will prove invaluable to our entrants and finalists”.

Nordic businesses often look to the UK when expanding outside of the region for the first time, and Goodwille have shared their vast experiences at London Tech Week, Oslo Innovation Week & later this year, SLUSH.

James Service, Marketing Manager of Goodwille says “We’ve been working closely with the Nordic startup scene for over two decades. This partnerships with the Nordic Startup Awards cements our position as the market leader in helping businesses from the Nordic region with their expansion to the UK.”

Over 2,500 companies were nominated for the Nordic Startup Awards in 2018, and the regional finalists received tens of thousands of nominations from across the Nordic countries.

With the five regional finals drawing to a close, the regional winners will battle it out at The Grand Finale in Copenhagen on the 30th October to win one of thirteen awards, including Founder of the Year, Best Accelerator or Incubator & Startup of the Year.

Press Contacts

Kim Balle, Co-Founder & CEO, Nordic Startup Awards
kim@globalstartupawards.com

James Service, Marketing Manager, Goodwille
james.service@goodwille.com

Oslo Innovation Week 2018

Oslo Innovation Week is getting closer and so is our event The world is ready for Norwegian tech (but are you ready fore the world?)! Join us at Oslo House of Innovation on 25 September for all the tips and advice you need to take your tech business to the next level! We have a great lineup of speakers covering everything tech startups need to know to conquer the world – from hiring for scale-up and winning PR tricks, to raising investment and getting up to speed quickly in new markets. And speaking of speakers, we have some great news to share!

We are happy and excited to announce that we have added Alliance Venture to the list of speakers at the event! Being the leading early stage investor in Norway, Alliance Ventures bring insights on what’s cooking on the Norwegian tech scene, opportunity in international markets (and where to go) and what to think about when raising investment for your startup. A great addition to the mix of advice on how to make a Norwegian startup an international success that startups attending the event can expect!

Tickets are free for tech businesses but you need to sign up to attend. Click HERE to get to the event sign up.

About the event

The event targets Norwegian Tech businesses that are ready to expand  to international markets. It will be an interactive seminar with speakers responsible for helping some of Norway’s fastest growing tech businesses tap in to & scale up in international markets, providing you with all the insights you need to take the big leap. We will also hear the success story of a Norwegian startup and advice from someone who has done the full journey and succeeded.

The seminar is followed by a networking session where you will get the chance to mingle with the speakers, like-minded entrepreneurs, people and businesses that have already made the journey, as well as experts that can advice you on what to think about when taking your businesses onto the international arena. We will also offer 1-2-1 sessions with all speakers for those interested!

Speakers

360 Leaders – Learn about the importance of building the right company culture and getting the right people when going from startup to scaleup and expanding into new areas. 360 Leaders is a market-leading executive search firm that provides leadership talent to the world’s most innovative tech companies, including Apple, Facebook, iZettle and Schibsted Media Group.

Alliance Venture – Scaling your business and expanding to new markets can be costly. Venture Capital firm Alliance Venture is the leading early stage investor in Norway that invest in tech companies with global potential and work with them to expand internationally. They will talk about the exciting tech scene in Norway and how to leverage that in international markets, what they as investors see as the hottest tech right now and what they look for in companies they invest in.

Deliberate PR – As a small, Nordic business ready to take on the world, you need to showcase to potential investors, strategic partners, employees, and users what makes you unique and scalable. Deliberate PR helps Nordic startups make the news with creative strategies and clever news themes. They will speak about how you can use news to your advantage and show examples of how they have created PR campaigns that helped Nordic startups succeed around the world.

No Isolation – With the help of Deliberate PR, Norwegian startup No Isolation made a huge buzz in the media as part of their UK launch campaign. They will share their amazing story and the decision to expand internationally early on, and provide both inspiration and advice on expanding abroad from Norway.

Goodwille & Escalon – The co-hosts of the event! Together we’ve helped businesses from Norway expand into the UK & US markets for decades. We will share our insights and tips on how to get to market quickly, and the opportunities in the UK and US markets for Norwegian businesses.

Events details

Date: Tuesday 25 September 2018
Time: 10am-1pm
Location: Oslo House of Innovation (OHOI), 4th floor, Skippergata 22, 0154 Sentrum, Oslo, Norway
Tickets: Grab your ticket HERE!

About Oslo Innovation Week

Oslo Innovation Week is an annual happening inviting people from all around the world to Norway’s capital city for conferences, talks, pitching, workshops and networking with like-minded, change-driven corporates, entrepreneurs, startups and organisations. 2018’s edition in the 13th Oslo Innovation Week around, this year held between 24-28 September. Oslo Innovation Week is owned by the City of Oslo and Innovation Norway, with Oslo Business Region as project manager. Check out the full programme for OIW 2018 on oiw.no/.

What are the advantages of international expansion?

The benefits of expanding operations into overseas markets are not reserved only for large corporations. Small businesses can tap into them as well, as long as the necessary planning is in place and a patient approach is taken. Particular attention will need to be paid to cultural differences that could necessitate alterations to the ways you do business, but the benefits are there to be seized. Here are some of the key advantages of international expansion.

Untapped markets

Your company may offer services or products that are not available in some parts of the world, where demand is consequently very high. If you expand your operation into markets such as these, you can attract a hungry new customer base with minimum threat of immediate competition. You may even find the nation’s government sweetens the pot with incentives for expanding into their territory, because you’ll help boost their economy and create jobs.

Positive business climate

Other countries may offer superior economic conditions to your own. Recessions or restrictive policies from governments make it hard to turn a profit, and expansion into an area not affected by these things can offer a prosperous alternative. In essence, a new nation could offer a more ‘business-friendly’ economic climate, with advantages like lower taxes or less stringent environmental regulations.

Increased exposure

International expansion increases a business’s exposure, helping to create a global footprint. This can lead to greater brand recognition across the world, and potentially facilitate further expansion in the future. This can also help you gain more respect from customers and businesses in your domestic market as they’re more likely to view you as a major player in your industry.

Breathing new life into your business

It is not only a thriving business that can grow through international expansion; entering overseas markets can help rejuvenate a struggling enterprise. If you are operating in a saturated domestic market, or your market share is shrinking, you may find new outlets for your services or products in a different country. If you depend on certain resources or demands that are in short supply in your home country, you may be able to find exactly what you need overseas.

Goodwille have helped overseas businesses expand into the UK for over 20 years. We have experience helping business with everything from setting up a UK company and ensuring compliance with UK employment law, to help with introducing you to our expensive and international network and bridging any business culture gap. If you want to know more about how we can help your business expand internationally; to the UK or elsewhere, contact us at Goodwille and we’ll tell you more.