Morten at TechCrunch Disrupt Europe (London). 21st October 2014.
Bitesized Insight of Morten Lund
WIRED (September 2011): To make a conference successful…
‘Invite Morten Lund to hold an amazing keynote and motivate the crowd to a frenzy…’
- VIDEO from St Gallen 2010 (33 minutes)
- VIDEO from GeekNRolla 2010 (30 minutes)
- VIDEO from SIME08 on Vimeo
- Link to Art Directors Club 08 Speech
- Link to LeWeb08
Besides my full-time job as a father of four wonderful children, I dare to believe that I can change industries. All I need is technology, hard work, good people and a bit of cash.
It’s simple, not easy.
“Morten is the kind of guy that accomplishes more in a month than most of us do in a lifetime. As a self-described neo-classical serial entrepreneur, Morten’s impact on the world has left an indelible mark.”
– By Michael Lee (see short bio + cover-story.pdf + Computerworld Summer in Danish)
Morten Lund has founded and invested in over 110 tech start-ups including:
- onlyXO (Chairman) – Companies revolving around financial services tech
- Capital Aid (Chairman) – Factoring solution for SMEs to get paid quicker
- AirHelp (Chairman) – YCombinator star helping air passengers get compensation
- Tradeshift (Chairman) – Revolutionising digital invoicing
- VoIP giant Skype (sold to eBay for $2.5 billion)
- ZYB.com – mobile backup (sold to Vodafone)
- Bullguard – Anti-virus consumer brand
- Web Agency NeoIdeo (sold to Leo Burnett)
- Maxthon – Chinese browser with 310 million downloads
- Zecco.com – Commissions free stock trading
Morten’s journey as an entrepreneur has seen him reach great highs and lows. The pinnacle of Skype’s sale to eBay in September 2005 for $2.5 billion (again in May 2011 to Microsoft for $8.5 billion), and the low of personal bankruptcy in January 2009 following a disastrous end to his free newspaper venture Nyhedsavisen.
The intrigue surrounding Morten and his current projects can be seen on his Twitter account, where he has the highest number of followers of any entrepreneur in Denmark. The focus of his varied and unorthodox career has tended to shift with each decade. For example, in his 20s, he moved in the advertising business, selling his web design agency to Leo Burnett at the age of 27. In his 30s, Morten created Denmark’s first incubator, active in Skype, ZYB, Bullguard, Polar Rose, Zecco and 80 other startups. A recent smash hit was Tradeshift, a digital invoicing group founded in his basement in November 2009. Some years later (in March 2014), the company closed a $75 million investment, driving it into the Asian market with PayPal and Intuit as fellow investors.
Now in his 40s, he is concentrating on financial technology companies linked to Tradeshift, with Capital Aid as the standout project. Morten is also building a portfolio of startups that match his needs as a serial entrepreneur such as pitchXO, Tofte & Company and Sharkboard.
Tenacious, instinctive and viciously self-promoting, Morten’s network activity extends from honing the raw brilliance of young UK programmers, to masterminding a sit-down with former US President Bill Clinton at the Clinton Global Initiative. From leading a 2009 sojourn to Sir Richard Branson’s Necker Island retreat for his Carbon War Room brainstorming bash, to enjoying quality time with his family and kids.
He lives out of a suitcase, but home for now is a northern suburb of Copenhagen.
Politics does not apply to Scandinavian entrepreneurs. However, Morten has said in the past that he has a very deep love for the Danish social model, where everyone gets the same chances – free schools, universities, roads and hospitals – and where the strong and wealthy take care of those who have trouble.
CV for Morten Lund
2014 | MAR
It’s now official that AirHelp (which has airline bosses running scared) is part of the Winter 2014 intake to rockstar Silicon Valley incubator, YCombinator. The AirHelp service has launched this month in the US and has been all over the news headlines, from NBC to San Francisco Weekly to TechCrunch.
2014 | FEB
A mind-blowing breakthrough this month as Tradeshift secures $75 million from Scentan Ventures to expand into China and Japan. Analysts value the company at over $300 million now.
2010 | MAR
I’m officially out of bankruptcy (Danish Article in Computerworld)
2009 | APR
I took the job (the second in my life) as adviser to TRADESHIFT, which was known in the very early days as PortaOpen.
2009 | APR
I took the job (the first in my life) as CEO for EVERBREAD
2009 | FEB
I spent a week with Sir Richard Branson on his Necker Island, talking about climate change.
2008 | MAR
My son Isak was born. Fantastic to get one more healthy baby!
2006 | APR
LundXY is formed. I work with many partners in many ways – and choose the perfect partner for each project. My focus is still on PEOPLE, not money.
2005 | OCT
LundKenner formed. Soren Kenner and I decided to join forces in building a venture company built on competences, NOT MONEY.
2005 | Sept 12th
Skype is sold to eBay. To learn more, read this blog post. The moment that changed my life.
2004 | FEB
Me in FORTUNE – :) Funny. Niklas and Janus were on the front cover! The article itself feels strange and super cool.
2003 | DEC
BullGuard.com – receives funding from DJF / ePlanet. One of my goals in life is achieved (I’m fucking proud of Heini, Theis, Tomas and myself). Now I have to deliver. No doubt that DFJ have found me through Niklas and Janus’ always flattering presentations of me – and very importantly, Henrik Albertsen from DVP. I count myself lucky again.
2003 | NOV
My most wild idea ever BullGuard.com has more than 45 million P2P installations, 15 million application downloads, and five million registered users. Heini is on board as COO.
2003 | OCT
Skype has unofficially secured funding and I’m suddenly a seed investor in a huge VoIP player! It feels cool to sit around the table with Bessemer, DFJ, and Index.
2002 | DEC
My son Linus is born. Fantastic to get one more healthy baby.
2002 | APR
BullGuard.com, my latest venture, is now public. We will launch as soon as possible – within two or three weeks. Damn, it looks good ! As always, it is partner-based. Co-founder Thies is a little hero.
2002 | FEB
Profiled as an entrepreneur in Euromann (the Danish equivalent to GQ) on page 54.
2002 | JAN
Helping Niklas and Janus with the suddenly exploding Kazaa, mainly on business development. Now playing with 30 million users and growing, to make for the world’s largest ISP concept (Died). ALL TOP CONFIDENTIAL – but the technology is in alpha-testing and investors are lined up. Admittedly, I’m extremely conservative in spending.
2001 | NOV
Consulting with TeleDenmark (monopoly telco in Denmark) on web strategy and development. It’s strange to see a company THAT BIG from the inside. VERY INSPIRING – and I can proudly say that I’ve made a difference.
2001 | SEP
SMSaps is funded by Comitel AS – and the new business model – REVENUESHARE (the DoCoMo model). We are first to launch premium paid SMS with the national telco TDC – now they see that sharing is winning – after two years of hard work!!
2001 | JULY
Entering the board of the reconstructed Travelmarket.com. R. Bunch has asked me to present him in the 35 million DRK investment. I left because I did not believe in the guy, BUT I WAS VERY WRONG.
2001 | MAY
Invited to FutureCamp.dk by Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen and The Ministry of Trade and Industry. I had the opportunity for five hours a week to tell everybody in my surroundings how it was a pretty COOL concept and that I believe in the vision of making Denmark the number one IT nation. The 33 selected people, and the 20 or so ideas they came up with, will not do it alone. But, with a viral and non-political movement, we WILL make it. Period.
SMSaps in close collaboration with Payfish and heavy media players. Went out of cash and was handed over to the VERY NON-SYMPATHETIC small-timers from Comitel. Pay your VAT, guys ;)
2001 | JAN
Profile in LEDEREN, INFORMATION, B. Nyhedsmag., Berlingske..
VindEnHund.dk – (Quiz/Research) – 75.000 reg. Users
Prey4 (reality bites :-) – what a hell.
2000 | AUG
22 August was the experience of my life. Laura was born :-)
2000 | JUNE
Speaking at Sime, McKinsey (truly flattered !!) . IT celeb for a year :)
2000 | JAN
Found Prey4, a venture fund, with £2 million – together with Henrik Skov Andersen. Erhvervsinvest Nord has been a superb partner. I truly hope that I can pay them back some day.
Mindset4.dk (PR agency)
Guleroden.dk (online giftshop – still run by the fabulous Kurt)
2000 | JAN
Weekly profile in Computerworld – READ
2000 | FEB
Acquires share in Reboot.dk, an e-event for e-workers, where I develop a strong relationship with Thomas Mygdall !
2000 | JAN
Top three web bureau in Denmark Neo Ideo – my LOVE, my EVERYTHING, whom we sold to Leo Burnett in January 2000 – is becoming an integrated part of the Leo Burnett Group. It loses its solo identity. WOW, that’s hard. I invented that name – Jimmy, Lars, Weikop and the crew made it something unforgettable. I respect the Leo people 200%!
1999 | DEC
Develops revolutionary “Word of mouth” concept for Baileys – SOLD WORLDWIDE
WINS: The DMA International ECHO Awards
1999 | OCT
Concept for commercial launch of Scor.dk, a Danish online adult contact site. It reaches 13% of DanKort Internet payments by October 1999.
1999 | AUG
Develops Neo Pro, online project management used by DSB. The company was later acquired by LeoBurnett Norway.
1999 | MAY
Addresses Bill Gates, stammering. But I’m proud to say this moment made it to DR (Danish national broadcaster) in prime time. YOU ARE WELCOME TO LAUGH!
1999 | MAR
Debut at Sime. Money was small. Hlin and I arrived as journalists. We interviewed Poul Saffo, J. Niel Waintraut and Bill Taylor – and visited Razorfish Stockholm.
1999 | JAN
Starts Neo India with Kapil Manchanda.
1999 | FEB
Wins the golden @ (a Danish online award) for best interactivity for Get2Net.dk
1999 | JAN
Starts Net-x.com – Development of digital surveillance. Goes bankrupt after seven months due to cash problems. Copenhagen Airport has now bought the concept.
1998 | DEC
Founds DOTS (First digital economy “air-miles system” in Denmark).
1998 | NOV
Founds Crash Pilots; 15,000 members in just four weeks!
1998 | OCT
Develops graphical web identity and 15 channels for the get2net portal.
1998 | DEC
Starts e.magazine.dk – (full page Børsen & Berlingske).
1998 | JULY
Married 25 July with Hlin Schow Mogensdottir and receives Lisa Olavsdottir, 1989 as a bonus dowry. (Divorced 2008).
1998 | JUNE
Meets Thomas Weikop– future Musketeer-partner in Neo Ideo
1997 | NOV
Medie Compagniet goes bankrupt, due to my bad management. Rasmus Rask who was partner really did not deserve that (sorry Raz).
1997 | AUG
Develops graphical user interface for the SID home page (that’s the National Danish Workers Union). I actually did the Photoshop design for this myself.
1996 | APR
ColdSTART & CanvasKickStarting NeatWork – I call 20 to 30 prospects every day. Have two or three new business meetings every day.
1996 | FEB
Ne@tWork Aps (later the name was changed to Neo Ideo AS) was founded together with Jimmy Mayman, Lars Holm Hansen, Henrik Christoffersen and my father Niels K. Nielsen
1994 | AUG
Four months studies in Montpelier. (Well, “studies” is a fun expression)
1994 | MAY
Produces blue books for 105 schools on a 486 computer with Jannie, Lars, Jimmy and Rasmus – all friends, sitting at the kitchen table, making it happen. TRUE ENTREPRENEUR.
1994 | MAR
Invents national tour for entertainers Tim & Gordon. (greedy idiots)
1994 | FEB
Founds Medie Compagniet – development of Digital sales- and print systems (On Demand)
Reads the first issue of Wired. Five years later I had dinner with the fantastic Kevin Kelly (Wired founder) and came to understand how they tried and succeeded with creating a magazine primarily focusing on the possibilities in technology.
Develops ski concept for Larsen Rejser (Package Holidays)
Creates what today´s students consider the ‘student package’: Cap, blue book, sweatshirt, tour and party
Develops revolutionary “computer to print” concept for digital print shops
Commences the M. Sc. (economics) studies in Odense
wins Danish Championship in U18 handball, selected for the youth and U21 national team.
Finishes High School in Solrød and moves to Odense. Living at Christian “Legetøj”s place.
Born in Roskilde, Denmark. Grew up in Jersie with farmers all over.
Lisa Olafsdottir 1989
Laura Lund Nielsen 2000
Linus Lund Nielsen 2002
Mother: Inge Lund, Social Worker & Psychotherapist
Father: Niels K. Nielsen, electrician & CEO in Conelec AS
Holding Company data:
MORTEN LUND ApS
Gammel Moent 17, 1
1117 København K
MORTEN LUND II ApS (Lund2 Aps)
Gammel Moent 17, 1
1117 København K
Iban # DK6330003138611558
1310 København K
Laura, Dad and Linus angry
Photos of Me (Conference and Bio)
A word on non-disclosure agreements
We do not sign non-disclosure agreements (NDAs). We receive so many plans each week that if we signed every NDA request, we would quickly be overwhelmed with legal documentation. For entrepreneurs who are concerned about protecting their idea, Guy Kawasaki has an excellent summary of NDAs in this article from Forbes magazine.