Traditionally people have paid monthly fees for home deliveries of daily newspapers or milk, or for landline phone subscription plans. But fast forward to 2020 and as many as a third of Apple users in the Nordics choose to pay a monthly subscription fee with upgrade options instead of owning their devices outright.
As a former co-lead of the subscription-based checkout for Apple products in the Nordics, Hendrik Roosna knew all about this trend before striking out on his own to set up Fairown. His company now helps others replicate the success of pioneers of the subscription economy such as Netflix and Spotify.
“Even though we initially rolled out a version of our services in other Nordic
countries, we were surprised how quickly our partners moved forward in Sweden. The incorporation took us literally days and we were able to find a partner in Sweden and sign a letter of intent within two weeks of our first conversation. At that point, we knew that Stockholm would be the hub for our international expansion.”
And two years after opening the company headquarters in Tallinn, Hendrik identified Stockholm as the ideal location for a Northern Europe hub.
Success has come quickly. The German power tool enterprise Stihl was one of the first companies to partner with Fairown to offer its products by subscription, and the firm has subsequently teamed up with multiple businesses in sectors as diverse as IT and fashion.
FinTech is more than just services for intermediaries; it offers new solutions to the traditional production industry that Sweden is famous for.
While Fairown provides a simple and straightforward process for the end-user, it has developed sophisticated systems to underpin its services. When the customer checks out, Fairown initiates an unsecured loan agreement with a Swedish consumer bank so the seller is paid immediately.
Subscription-based business models like Fairown’s not only have financial benefits for manufacturers and their customers, they also provide a clear
pathway to the circular economy for the manufacturing sector: subscriptions incentivize manufacturers to produce long-lasting products that can be effectively reused or recycled. The model also caters to customer needs more effectively by allowing users to replace their devices regularly, or to buy or lease discounted refurbished devices.
As subscription-based businesses flourish worldwide, the model is increasingly attracting positive attention from authorities and investors alike. Meanwhile, Fairown’s success highlights the value of being able to leverage the expertise and networks that Stockholm has to offer as well as a business-friendly environment that fosters fast growth.
This story is featured in the new Stockholm FinTech Guide, which you can download here (PDF).
For more information, please contact Jenny Berthling. Details below.