NordicBaltic.Tech tracks the technology response to Covid-19 across the Nordic-Baltic region. The platform is made in partnership between the Nordic Council of Ministers and PUBLIC. We spoke to Valeria Bortoletto, one of the founders of Novear – Nordic Venture Architects, a student led consultancy helping startups through these uncertain times. Listen to the interview to hear how Novear has helped business stay afloat by rethinking business models and advising startups on how to innovate their way through the crisis.
What do you do at Novear and why did you embark on this journey?
Hi everyone my name is Valeria and with Levi, Luis and Vincent and I founded Novear – Nordic Venture Architects. We are a team of students with different backgrounds and an entrepreneurial mindset. We have the practical knowledge to assist startups during times of uncertainty. We collaborate with them through cutting edge strategy, marketing, business model innovation and online workshops.
What challenges has Covid-19 presented in Denmark?
Many challenges have arisen in Denmark due to Covid-19 however if we have to focus on our group target then I would suggest that product marketing is one of them for sure. Companies and founders have also lost motivation and productivity because they cannot connect with the customer. So customer relationships are for sure another challenge. And uncertainty. Business models do not apply anymore which is a huge challenge for startups especially in terms of financial worries.
How has Novear adapted to face Covid-19?
Nordic Venture Architects was actually born during Covid-19. It was a response to this pandemic as we saw a huge problem for startups. Actually all of us founders come from a background in organisational innovation and entrepreneurship – a masters program at Copenhagen Business School.
So knowing this environment, we saw a challenge for startups that we could actually help with a win win solution. This is how Novear was born. Since then we have advised a lot of startups from all over the world. From a travel agency in Mexico to one in Australia and many others in Denmark.
I have two examples for you, the first one is a travel agency in Denmark that actually helps to unlock knowledge. It helps people to go to the most unknown parts of the world. Of course with the ban of travel, Covid has had a huge impact on their business model. So we helped them to find a solution – maybe entering into the European market or doing market research in order to see if there was a possibility to open an e-commerce platform.
The second example is The Wallpaper Agency which is a startup base din Mexico. It was very important for us to start this project with them because we learned how important it is in this new digitalised world the differences in culture, time framing and teamwork as Covid-19 has changed forever the way we communicate and work with each other.
Looking forward, how do you think Covid-19 will change the demand for this type of technology?
Although the lockdown will be over soon, we believe that this crisis will cause unexpected and long lasting results that will change the dynamics of our economy and our work. We believe that business model innovation is not something that will cease to exist because the lockdown is over and will always be needed.
Moreover, we have to think about the fact that due to Covid-19 a lot of new needs will arrive from the market that will cause intense competition and a new wave of innovation.
This is exactly how we aim to expand our business in the future.