What it’s like to work in Stockholm’s fintech industry
Publish date: 5 February 2021
I was first introduced to the fintech space in Stockholm back in 2017 by a talented group of entrepreneurs who wanted to develop the fintech community here. I’d previously worked as a project leader in the cultural industry and was keen to switch career paths. What started as a summer internship ended up becoming the first step of my current career.
When I first began to explore the industry, what really inspired me was the drive of all the different actors in Stockholm’s financial ecosystem. They were so motivated and working together in a collaborative yet competitive manner. This is an industry that has hardly changed in centuries, and suddenly it was so active! When I was starting out, it was a very challenging environment but looking back now it was the perfect time to join as there were endless possibilities.
Fintech startups, financial institutions, investors, regulators, educational institutions, and financial services together form the ecosystem. All these players contribute to innovation, stimulate the economy, facilitate collaboration and competition, and ultimately benefit financial consumers. There’s a very dynamic and innovative fintech scene here in Stockholm with so much happening. There are more than 400 different fintech companies in Sweden, most of them here in the capital.
Over the last few years, I’ve seen Stockholm’s fintech ecosystem change greatly. We are in an era of fantastic collaboration, which is clear in various verticals. Sweden is very good at initiating this collaboration, for example, cases like BankGirot, BankID, Swish, and now there are joint Nordic projects like P27 and Nordic KYC. Furthermore, trust in the Swedish financial ecosystem and technology allows for new digital financial products to be adopted very quickly.
These factors create unique conditions for successfully fostering innovation in Stockholm. This is the reason I was part of the team that created Sthlm Fintech Week in 2019, after just two years in the fintech space. It’s a community-driven initiative uniting all the players in the financial ecosystem and building crossroads of different perspectives, visions, and engagement and highly focused on knowledge sharing.
Being actively engaged in the European financial ecosystem, I can say that we would not have reached where we are today in any city other than Stockholm. Community is incredibly important here, it ensures collaboration and only a few global centres can boast of knowledge sharing on the same scale as here in Sweden.
The industry is absolutely booming and there are plenty of opportunities for foreign talent. Stockholm Fintech companies like Tink and Trustly, Stockholm's most recent unicorn, are growing rapidly and are always looking for more talent. I would definitely encourage internationals to come and join the community. It’s a supportive environment and you’ll meet great people - not to mention the ecosystem here will appreciate having you.