Viewpoint 1.07.2016
By Line Byrfelt Grønlykke

Recruit today, excel tomorrow - ensuring growth through recruitment

People are what makes companies successful. Period.

As Denmark’s largest early-stage investor we have learned that the team will determine whether a company will be a success or a failure. The team, simply put, trumps the idea. A good idea can easily turn into a bad investment if not successfully executed, while a great team have the competencies to pivot an idea before it becomes a bad idea.

In light of the importance assigned to the team and competencies of a startup, we have recently employed Mads Klarskov Petersen, as our new Director of Talent. Mads will, in this newly established position, be helping our portfolio of companies identify the right people, at every level, recruit them effectively and thus prepare our companies for rapid growth.

Mads has 10 years of experience building winning hyper growth SAAS companies. He Comes from a position at e-conomic, where he was in charge of developing and building an HR function ensuring scalability of the organization. Mads was a part of the exit team responsible for the sales process, compliance and handover to Visma who bought e-conomic in 2015.

When talking to our founders, recruiting is always an issue. Always. And why wouldn’t it be? As CEO you need to tackle so many different things, which means that you simply cannot be an expert within all fields.

We already have an extensive network in SEED Capital and Mads is here to structure it and systematize the process of assessment and selection. Fundamentally, it is about having the understanding that a company undergoes different stages of development and then stay on top of that process through recruitment of e.g. board members or other executives that will help the company move to the next level.

We are very humble in terms of how we approach this task, as it is relatively untested terrain in the industry as a whole and especially in Scandinavian venture. At the same time our ambitions for this project are sky high as we have seen how foreign venture funds such as Andreessen Horowitz, Google Ventures and Sequioa Capital have helped their portfolio skyrocket through skilful recruitment.

"Entrepreneurs often lack critical mass to be able to attract the right candidates. Startups rarely have the processes, networks and resources to recruit effectively. In the short term it is about helping our portfolio recruit top talent and ultimately it is about enabling them to manage the process themselves and preferable in a pace that corresponds the growth of the company” says our Managing Partner, Ulla Brockenhuus-Schack.

“When I started, I think I used 2% of the time recruiting and 98% of the time correcting the mistakes for not being thorough enough in my recruiting”

- Peter Mühlmann, CEO at Trustpilot.


It is not just about what you need right now!

One of our most successful portfolio companies, Trustpilot, founded in 2007 employs over 500 people worldwide. Peter Mühlmann, CEO of Trustpilot welcomes the initiative:

“When Trustpilot really started to grow, I don’t think I was aware of just how important it is to get the right people on board. Suddenly I had to recruit having no particular competencies within this area. It is not just about what you need right now. You also have to see a fit for the candidate in the organization 6-12 months down the line. I would have appreciated being challenged more in regards to my approach back then,” says Peter Mühlmann

We are thrilled to have Mads on our team. And if you are already in SEED Capital’s portfolio, you will be hearing from him.

We always strive to be the very best partner to our portfolio companies. Therefore we also, recently, entered into a collaboration with one of Denmark’s leading PR-agencies to be able to assist our companies in the pursuit for media coverage.

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