Extraordinary accomplishments by Aarhus startups 2021
Last year, we saw a number of accomplishments by Aarhus-born startups and scaleups that far surpassed the ordinary. These companies and their accomplishments deserve a second round of acknowledgement.
Aarhus-born Unicorn, Trustpilots, goes public
In March 2021, Trustpilot announced its initial public offering (IPO) on the London Stock Exchange. On the first day on the market, shares of the Aarhus-born company climbed 16% from the offer price of £2.65 ($3.65), which gave the company a valuation of 9.8 billion DKK (£1.1 billion). The IPO raised about 4.2 billion DKK (£473 million) in total.
Trustpilot is a consumer-review site, founded in 2008 by Peter Holten Mühlmann, with a mission to improve transparency on the internet. The company now has +600 employees and is in the top 1% most popular websites in an Alexa ranking.
Pond announces collaboration with Adidas
The Aarhus-based startup, Pond, announced in October 2021, that they’ve partnered up with Adidas. Adidas is the world’s second-largest sports apparel brand, yearly taking home +19 billion € in net sales. They are now testing Pond’s technology, creating better plastic from biomaterials, to use in their production.
The startup, Pond, is built on the technology Pond Cycle® which revolutionizes the use of plastics in manufacturing. Today, most of the world’s plastic is made by oil, which responsible for 7 kilos of CO2 emissions pr. kilo plastic produced. Pond has created an optimized bioplastic, with the same qualities as traditional plastic, using plants. Opposite the oil’s pollution, the plants, Pond uses, subtract about 2 kilos of CO2 pr. kilo plastic made. On top of that, the plastic is created using waste streams from food production.
Together with Adidas, Pond is helping them lower their CO2 emissions by creating a climate-friendly alternative to the plastic they currently use in producing sports apparel and shoes. Pond was founded in 2015 by Thomas Brorsen Pedersen, Pernille Alberg Pedersen, and Martin Jensen.
Humio sold for 2,4 billion DKK – the year’s largest exit
In February, the year 2021’s largest exit by an Aarhus startup was made, when American CrowdStrike acquired Humio for DKK 2.4 billion (around $400 million). CrowdStrike is a cyber security tech company with a base in California.
Humio provides a logging tool, that helps companies track their servers in real-time. The company was founded by Geeta Schmidt, Christian Hvitved og Kresten Krab Thorup in 2016. Today, the company has about 80 employees of which a third is still based in Aarhus.
Lunar reaches Unicorn status with +1.5 billion DKK investment
Breaking the record for the largest investment in 2021, the Aarhus-born FinTech company, Lunar, raised more than 1.56 billion DKK in their Series-D round. The investment landed in June 2021 was led by Heartland together with Kinnevik and Tencent. It secured Lunar the title of Aarhus’ third-ever Unicorn.
Lunar is the only cloud-based banking platform, licensed to bank in the Nordics. It is amongst the fastest growing banks in Europe. The company was founded by Ken Villumn Klausen in Aarhus and now has offices in Copenhagen, Stockholm and Olso as well. In total, Lunar has landed more than 2,3 billion DKK in investments to date.