ITovation October 27: Svein Tryggestad, Innovator

22 October 2009 at 11:02

Svein Tryggestad, Adressa 11.11.2007Svein Tryggestad, founder of OCEANOR. Property developer, investor and member of several boards.

1.    What background did you have when you started – education and experience?
Cand Real from the University at Blindern. Master in Physical oceanography / meteorology. Ten years as a researcher at SINTEF (NHL), Head of the Department of Marine Environment at NHL.

2.      Why did you start – were you on your own or with others, if so, with whom and with what experience?
In order to serve a growing market in offshore we had to commercialize the business we ran at the research institution SINTEF. We needed significantly more capital and faster decision paths to be able to serve this market. Furthermore, we saw great potential in environmental monitoring, which back then was a new market. Left SINTEF with 33 men with approximately 10 years of experience at the research institution, and started up in 1984.

3.      What’s the name of the company you established, and how did it go with it?
OCEANOR (Oceanographic Company of Norway), the company developed well but it took time. Today the company is part of the Fugro group, with a turnover of between 100 and 120 million with annual earnings about 5 million.

4.      Would you do anything different today?

5.      One good advice to young people today with an entrepreneur mind?
Go ahead! Get in touch with LEN, Leiv Eiriksson Innovation.

6.      Did you get any special support back then, like economic / other resources that helped you get started – public or private?
I had a good agreement with SINTEF on buying out contracts and equipment. Received a 10 million NOK loan from the bank of Nordea, and had close co-operation with oil companies and the Norwegian Research Council.

7.      What is your own opinion about what caused the success?
Talented people thinking commercially from day one. A pleasant and exciting work environment, with similar commercial enterprises near by. And there was a need in the market for our products.

8.      What do you do today?
Invested in, and member of the board, for several start-up businesses. Property developer (Pirsenteret with about 150 companies).

The picture is from the newspaper Adressa, 11.11.2007:


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