A company operating in as many territories as FundedByMe needs excellent legal council and we have been fortunate enough to find just that in our legal partner, Bird and Bird. I caught up with Partner Johan Tydén recently:
Introduce your brand – what makes your brand unique and relevant to the FundedByMe audience?
Bird and Bird is a law firm with a focus on what we call emerging companies, i.e. early stage companies with a clear strategy to grow. We have the competence, the experience and the PASSION about supporting these companies as long term partners, not only in Sweden but also on an international basis, as we do for FundedByMe.
What is your background, passions and ‘day job’?
My name is Johan Tydén and I have spent most of my career working with international technology companies. I was heading the legal support to Ericsson’s mobile business in the late 80’s to 2000 when the business grew from 1 billion SEK to a 100 billion SEK business, which of course was an extremely interesting period. Since 2000, I have been partner at Bird and Bird, primarily focusing on technology companies and in particular on emerging companies with an ambitious strategy of growth. To work with emerging companies and act as a proactive advisor during their journies to success, in Sweden and internationally, is fascinating and extremely rewarding.
How did your brand first get familiar with crowdfunding and why does it appeal to you?
We were introduced to Daniel at FundedByMe in connection with the SIME event last year. As we had experienced, very concretely, that one of the most challenging parts of the evolution of a start-up company is the funding and we were fascinated by this alternative way of funding. Furthermore I was amazed of how the funding and entrance of a larger number of investors could constitute a part of the company’s marketing and branding strategies. We were, of course, further thrilled by the scalability of the business model to an international environment.
Describe the scope of the partnership you have entered into with FundedByMe? What made you want to get involved?
As always when you meet entrepreneurs, you try to evaluate the business case but perhaps even more importantly, the entrepreneurs behind the idea. We felt that if we could in any way participate and hopefully contribute to FundedByMe’s development, it would be fantastic. Further, we identified it as an excellent opportunity for Bird and Bird to come closer to interesting companies and entrepreneurs and hopefully be able to follow them as well in the future. We have since April this year been FundedByMe’s preferred law firm and have provided advise in more than 10 countries to the ever-expanding team.
What do you expect to get out of this partnership on the long run?
We hope to be able to follow FundedByMe in its expansion and to have the opportunity to actively participate in the brand’s crowdfunding activities, with entrepreneurs and investors, in each local market. This may create good business, valuable branding and certainly be great fun.
What is the most important tip you’d give investors and entrepreneurs who are considering crowdfunding as a way to fund their businesses or ideas?
From the entrepreneur’s side, I think it is important to set an agenda for the crowdfunding process, both short term and longer term. Why are we doing this? (i) Attract capital (ii) create brand awareness or (iii) access a marketing network or (iv) a combination of all three. Evaluate the possible negative features, for example the complexity with a larger number of investors. From the investor’s side, the flip side on the coin. Why? (i) Pure investment (ii) part of social entrepreneurship or (iii) promotion of a product/service.
Are there any current campaigns on FundedByMe that you have your eyes on?
I love the Reward-based campaign “Get Mathias to Brussels” and actively followed the Equity Campaign “Eggs Inc. Sweden AB”. These are two good examples of the diversity of the campaigns and two brands that probably would be difficult to fund outside the realm of crowdfunding.