The new year is kicking off in just in the right way for Creandum. 2016 has already seen a few exits and large uprounds closed, while dealflow is looking strong. But that’s not all for the firm, it’s a great time to announce a couple of additions to our investment advisory team.

We are extremely proud to announce that Simon Schmincke and Bjarke Staun-Olsen are joining us. These two will strengthen Creandum’s geographic coverage and clearly improve our average IQ. Both Simon and Bjarke also have several years of operating and entrepreneurial experience – a key factor in supporting the entrepreneurs Creandum back.

Clear fit for Creandum

Educated at St. Gallen, Simon Schmincke joins the team in Stockholm from a principal role at Early Bird venture capital. While working at the Berlin based firm, Simon served on the board for many of the recent Early Bird investments including Movinga and Number26. Before jumping into the Berlin VC scene, Simon cofounded several startups like Foodpanda in South East Asia, Hello Fresh in New York City, and Paymill in Munich. Simon and his family are relocating to Stockholm this winter and will focus on the developing opportunities in Germany and continental Europe. Drawing from a background as a developer, Simon will specialize in FinTech, Consumer and Developer Technologies.

Bjarke, educated in Copenhagen, recently ran Vaniday in Berlin, a Rocket Internet founded global beauty and wellness marketplace. After spending some years at Goldman Sachs, Bjarke co-founded Alipes Capital in 2008, a company with 20 current employees that employs machine learning and natural language processing to read financial news, allowing stocks to be trades on the insights generated. Bjarke is still a major shareholder and board member of this very profitable fintech company. Bjarke will also move to Stockholm and focus on the Nordic market.

With the addition of Simon and Bjarke, Creandum will have 9 investment advisory professionals – Staffan Helgesson, Fredrik Cassel, Daniel Blomquist, Sabina WIzander, Simon Schmincke, Bjarke Staun-Olsen based in Stockholm, and Johan Brenner, Joel Eriksson and Carl Fritjofsson based in Palo Alto/San Francisco.

We took the opportunity to ask Simon and Bjarke the two most obvious questions.

Creandum: What drew you to the firm?

Simon: When the team laid out their vision to be one of the leading European Venture Capital firms, I was hooked. I believe if we combine the product and design strengths that we see in so many of the current Creandum portfolio companies, with the exceptional execution skills of the German entrepreneurs, Creandum can majorly impact the Berlin startup scene and across Europe.

Bjarke: I was drawn to Creandum not only because it’s the leading early stage investor in the Nordics, but with my background starting companies from scratch I find early stage the most interesting. It’s a natural extension of my network in Denmark and Europe, and I believe in Creandum’s focus on really being a partner to portfolio companies.
Creandum: What do you think you’ll focus on at Creandum?

Simon: I have personal experience in running and investing into highly scalable fintech companies, consumer platforms, and developer products. Even though I’m moving to Stockholm, to be closer to the team, I’ll also have my eye on the German startups and the rest of continental Europe.

Bjarke: As a Dane I’ll have my eye on Denmark – but not exclusively – and on Fintech, which makes sense due to my background. In addition I will do some work in marketplaces and Saas.