Innovation from Baltics
The aim of the innovation panel is to discuss possibilities for Baltic innovational technology export to the Nordics and the World. Low value sub-contracting is a thing of the past and tomorrow’s entrepreneur has to be an innovator.
We will look at the success stories and listen to visionaries who can lead the way.
Panel moderator is Toomas Käbin.
Toomas Käbin (BA in Business Adm, Sweden, Ma in Econ, USA)was born in Sweden by Estonian parents. Being employed by the Swedish Trade Council in Stockholm he arranged the first Swedish business delegation to Estonia in 1989. In 1990 he set up the Swedish Trade Council office in Tallinn and worked as Trade Counsellor and First Secretary (Commercial) at the Swedish Embassy until 2001 assisting a large number of Swedish companies with the set-up of operations in Estonia and establishing trade links.
Toomas Käbin was a cofounder of the Swedish Chamber of Commerce in Estonia in 1996. Toomas Käbin has a vast experience from media, seminars and conferences related to Swedish-Estonian business promotion.
Toomas Käbin is an independent business consultant since 2001 which includes being Director of the BALTECH consortium between eight leading Nordic and Baltic technical universities and chief-editor of The Baltic Guide – på svenska. Toomas Käbin has been the director of The Lennart Meri Europe Foundation, board member of George Soros Foundation in Estonia and is a board member of the Tartu University Foundation.
Speakers are Taneli Tikka, Alari Aho and Priit Humal.
Executive MBA, CEO, Entrepreneur
Taneli started his entrepreneurial career by leaving Nokia to start his own business around his twenties. Little he knew that he would be setting on a path that has continued ever since. Taneli has an experience record of more than 10 years full of entrepreneurship and developing challenging growth businesses. He tries to follow the serial entrepreneur career made popular by Silicon Valley entrepreneurs; where the key goal is to grow successful businesses as a serial & parallel process.
Taneli has had the pleasure of being involved with more than a few interesting growth companies. All together Taneli has founded about half dozen companies, CEO’ed almost 10 of them, raised a dozen rounds of venture capital funding, and made several tradesales, exists and acquisitions. Along the way the road has also taken Taneli to spend a few years as a corporate president of a bigger Plc corporation. Taneli is the former CEO of IRC-Galleria (the largest youth media & social networking site in Finland), which was sold to Sulake Corporation (Habbo Hotel) in the spring of 2007. He’s been the Chief Operating Officer of Dopplr, a service for active world travellers, that was sold to Nokia in September 2009. Taneli has studied at the Helsinki School of Economics, where he graduated 1st of his class of the 2004 Executive MBA.
Currently Taneli is working with several growth companies and startups. Often in the role of a director in the Board of Directors, as well as an advisor to management and the board. In addition he is also has a small portfolio of his own startups to develop and steer forward. Taneli is also involved in the Finnish national scale with advancing the technology industry; he is a director in two management groups for Tekes, the Finnish national funding agency for technology and innovation. Taneli is a also participating in the development of innovation policy with the ministry of the economy, and he is a former director of the Finnish Software Entrepreneurs Association.
Taneli’s hobbies are scuba diving, active travelling, firearms training, and staying on the pulse of the global Internet culture. Taneli is a part-time coach for Deep Lead, Ltd, on the side of his main activities as an entrepreneur & CEO. Taneli writes an english language blog (on entrepreneurship and other such topics). You can also read more about Taneli from the english Wikipedia.
HUMAL Elektroonika Ltd., CEO
Priit and his father Leo Henn Humal, both having background in physics, started a family business in 1990 aiming to commercialize some innovative products that was under development in Tartu University team. With a view and desire to respond to the great local demand for stamps on time of forming the company they were determined to find a good way to produce stamps. They found a good soviet industrial laser engraver, connected the laser to a PC and started the production of rubber stamps in 1991.This production line was given the trademark HUMAL Stamp Production.
On time they entered stamp industry some new technologies have arrived there. Company got involved in laser engravers, but was even better position in arriving flash technology. Among a few issued patents in the segment Leo got one important patent. They also started to export equipment and technology through Sweden and other parts of the world. In cooperation with Danish Technological Institute they managed to sell licenses of the patent to most of important players in this market.
Priit’s hobbies are windsurfing and music. He’s involved in renovation project of Tartu Pauluse church and organ building committee.
Alari started his IT-career in 1994 as a software developer while still being in high-school. After working in several innovative companies and various freelance gigs, he co-founded Apprise in 2000. Apprise (www.apprise.eu) is a 15-member team which focuses on agile software development services for customers in the Scandinavian and Baltic region.
In 2007 he co-founded a startup Toggl.com which now is an independent spin-off of Apprise. Toggl is a fast growing cloud-based time management tool for freelancers and small teams. It’s a global product with customers on every continent, with 60% from USA, Canada and UK. Alari and the team have gathered a good understanding on how to bootstrap a startup with a global ambition, how to handle customers, competitors, partners etc.
Alari has a BA in Economics from Tartu University, and he studied in the MBA course of Technology Management at the same school.