Participating in the WIN Startup Investment training for Women day 4

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The startup investment training course for women is slowly coming to a close, as this course marks the fourth out of five in total. The course focus was to invest from a legal perspective, and hearing pitches from two very interesting startups: Lawyered and Okida. The course took place at Kvale Lawfirm at Majorstuen, and the presentations were held by Janne Erichsen and Kristina Sandanger, who are senior lawyers, as well as Susanne Hamre Skoglund, who is an associate. We were met with beverages and food, as per usual, and given time to mingle amongst each other while they were getting their presentations together.

The room in which the presentations were held

Startup pitches: Okida & Lawyered

The first startup was Okida. They wish to become the first choice for people who need a fresh start, financially. Apparently over 560 000 Norwegians have debts on their credit cards with an interest rate of up to 20%, so Okida’s job is to collect all the information about their customers’ debt and then refinance them. The startup wishes to streamline the process of obtaining information, as they started out having a three week processing time, to three hours. It was founded by Evelina Olsson in 2020 and they’re tending to SDG (sustainable development goal) number eight, which is decent work and economic growth.

The second startup pitch was Lawyered. They have created an app that helps you create written, day-to-day micro contracts in just a couple of minutes. They are looking to solve a future problem by creating a contract generator. Their CEO is Mia Westby, who has a bachelor’s degree in both psychology and law. Hearing pitches from different startups is one of my favorite parts about this internship, I highly admire people who put in the work for an idea they believe in, and do whatever they can to make sure their vision comes to life. Given the fact that this course was the one I was the most nervous about, hearing from startups to kick it off really relieved some of the pressure for me.

Investing from a legal perspective: Janne Erichsen, Kristina Sandanger & Susanne Hamre Skoglund

After the startups were done pitching we got to hear about the legal side of investing from Erichsen, Sandanger & Hamre. They spoke about the various ways there are to invest and purchasing stocks, as well as a line-up of definitions of the different terms they use, like capital issue, shareholders agreements and tax incentive schemes for startups. Capital issue is an expansion of the company’s equity, where the company “prints” more stocks for future investors to buy. This typically “dilutes” the existing shares, while increasing the value of the company. The process of a capital issue is as follows:

· The board prepares a reasoned proposal to the general assembly about implementing the capital issue.

· The general assembly considers the proposal

· Investors and/or existing shareholders are offered to subscribe for shares

· The payment of the share contribution/investment amount.

· Registration in the business register within three months from the general assembly’s decision

· Documenting ownership is an introduction to the company’s book of shareholders — ask for a copy of the proof of ownership.

Shareholders agreements is one of the many important factors to consider when wanting to invest. A shareholders agreement usually regulates the financial- and organizational rights, and what you should think about when a shareholder agreement is entered into depends on whether you are a majority shareholder or if you should invest in something smaller. The startup must be a Norwegian stock company, or a foreign company that has its homebase within the EEA and are taxable in Norway. Tax incentive schemes for startups comes with different demands for investors as opposed to the company. Tax incentive schemes is normal in many countries, but this information is specific for Norway.

For investors they are as follows:

· Minimum amount is 30 000kr per company, maximum amount is one million a year.

· The investor or their related parties, cannot be or have ever been a shareholder in the company to be invested in.

· Cannot be, have been earlier or become employed in the company within three years of owning. Board members do not count as employees.

· Must own the stocks for at least three calendar years after the end of the calendar year the contribution/investment was registered in the national population register.

· Within three years of owning, the investor cannot receive distributions in connection with capital reduction or dividend from the company.

For the company:

· Six years or younger

· Less than 25 employees, but a minimum of 400 000kr in a salary basis.

· Operating revenues and balance sheet total to a maximum of 40 million kroner.

· Must mainly run other activity than passive asset management.

· Cannot be in financial difficulty at the time for the capital increase.

· Must report received amounts and investors to the Norwegian tax administration.

As well as this, they also made sure to talk about tax rates for startups in Norway, the EEA/EU and for startups outside of EEA/EU. It was a lot more interesting than I thought it would be, and it really helped me to further understand all the factors you have to consider when not only wanting to create a startup, but also when wanting to invest in one. I didn’t really comprehend the importance of attention to detail in all aspects of investing in and/or creating a startup until this course. It honestly makes me appreciate and respect the art of the industry even further, as I feel as if I would be walking around blind if I had the guts to start something of my own.

This internship is sadly coming to a close friday next week. I cannot even begin to describe how genuinely surprised I am about how much I have learned, and how much I actually wanted to learn. I am coming closer to the date of actually having to present startups to Ane Nordahl Carlsen, who is one of my supervisors, and the nerves and excitement is slowly but surely kicking in. Let’s see how this goes, shall we? Stick around for next week’s post to find out!

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