Why is M&A growing in importance in the APAC region? – Swedish Chambers APAC Webinar 12 October

Summary and Recording of the Event

Companies merge to share information, technology or other resources to increase the overall strengths. Mergers also help to overcome existing challenges, reduce weaknesses and gain a competitive edge in the market.

Why is M&A growing in importance in the APAC region? What are the economic driving factors? Which sectors/industries and capabilities are driving activity? What trends and opportunities are there in the region?

At this Swedish Chambers APAC webinar the following panellists shared their expertise on M&A activity in the region:

  • Martin Ekberg, Trade & Invest Commissioner to Australia and Business Sweden Global M&A Lead, Sydney
  • Enrique Patrickson, CFO & Head of Sales – Asia Pacific, Middle East & Africa at Electrolux, Singapore 
  • Ola Nordh, Head of M&A at Anticimex Group, Stockholm 

The session was moderated by Camilla Bullock, Director General, Emerging Payment Association APAC, Sydney 


Keep your eyes on the SACC socials Linkedin and Facebook for further updates as announcements are made about future events, and check out the Recent Events and Webinars page on the SACC website for summaries and recordings of our recent presentations. Please contact us for questions and further information: sacc@swedishchamber.com.au.

ABB and IKEA represented at Engineers Australia online event – The future of transport is electric

On September 15 SACC Members ABB and IKEA were represented at an Engineers Australia online event – Thought Leaders Series: The future of transport is electric

Online event content and focus:

A discussion on the key considerations for fleet operators today, such as electrical infrastructure, charging and power demands, to future-proof their transport needs.

  • The rapid move towards electric vehicles is seeing technology needs outpace wider infrastructure readiness.
  • This major market shift presents challenges and big opportunities for the infrastructure sector.
  • How can we balance a practical present-day business case with a proactive long-term vision?


  • Understand the requirements for transitioning to electric vehicles
  • Hear from experts on the benefits and challenges of electric vehicles
  • From electric buses to commercial fleets – what is the next frontier?


Dr Alina Dini
Founder and CEO, Whirl

Dr Alina Dini is captivated by renewable energy innovation and how it can build long term financial and climate resilience.  Alina’s experiences delivering energy and sustainability programs include working alongside some of the world’s leading innovators – such as Tesla’s founders and Australia’s first Renewable Energy Commissioner.
As Founder and CEO of Whirl, a peer-based digital marketplace re-imagining the shopping experience for energy technologies like electric cars, Alina brings a human element into technology topics and works with everyday people, businesses, and communities to help them harness energy innovations.

Brendan Groll
Customer Fulfilment Strategic Sourcing Manager, IKEA Australia

Brendan is the Customer Fulfillment Strategic Sourcing Manager for IKEA Australia. He has over 30 years’ experience in Retail Transport & Logistics Leadership roles, including time with David Jones Ltd, Steinhoff Group (now Greenlit Brands) prior to IKEA. Brendan is responsible for IKEA Australia’s transport, delivery & services operations. This includes driving the IKEA Australia zero emissions strategy and working with IKEA’s service partner fleet transformation towards agreed sustainability and emission targets.

Sean Stove
Transport Segment Lead, ABB Australia

Sean Stove is ABB Australia’s head of transportation and rail segments, having been involved in the rail sector since 2003. Joining ABB in 1997, Sean has held numerous senior roles in sales, operations and business development across Asia Pacific and Europe. In this role, he is responsible for leading ABB’s offering to the rail and transportation industry, from innovative solutions for rolling stock propulsion to energy efficient solutions for power infrastructure to software optimisation for asset health and management. After completing his Electrical Certificate from Christchurch Polytechnic, Sean became a graduate of the University of Queensland’s Mt Eliza MBA Program and completed the Senior Leadership Development program at the International Institute for Management Development in Lausanne, Switzerland.




Embassy of Sweden and SACC online event 7 Sept – Roadmaps for Fossil Free Competitiveness

 Summary and Recording of the Event

Roadmaps for Fossil Free Competitiveness – Challenges and Opportunities Towards Net Zero Emissions

The idea for this webinar was initiated during a SACC Sustainability Committee meeting. Our dynamic sustainability group, with representatives from a range of Swedish companies and business organisations, wanted to learn more about Fossil Free Sweden, the roadmaps and the bottom up approach and challenge towards net zero emissions from the industry in Sweden.

A Team Sweden event was presented on 7 September by Embassy of Sweden and Swedish Australian Chamber of Commerce together with Fossil Free Sweden. Introducing Fossil Free Sweden and the roadmaps to a broad Australian audience that joined and contributed to the discussion.

A prominent list of panellists was part of the discussion;

H.E Henrik Cederin, Swedish Ambassador to Australia opened and welcomed the audience to the webinar. Delivering a very strong message; “the need we face, to speed up the transition from the dependence of fossil fuel to create a society and economies that run on renewable energy. We have a critical decade ahead of us”.




Svante Axelsson, national coordinator set the scene of the current situation in Sweden regarding the CO2 emission per capita, energy mix and emission by industries. Inspiring with a positive message that industry can set the tone with the right narrative and can-do-mentality instilling confidence in leaders and decision makers to be brave and make the right decision.




David Leitch , Principal, ITK Services Australia and Author at RenewEconomy, moderated the discussion, applied the Australian angle and his deep knowledge of renewable energy and economics, layered the conversation to cover many aspects and questions on decarbonisation.





Marianne Hedberg, representative from The Construction and Civil Engineering Sector, one of the 22 roadmaps. The construction sectors largest challenge is how to decarbonize, in particular the largely used material cement. There are ways for the sector to lower their emissions, by adding fillers that do not add carbon emission and by investing in carbon storage/capture.




Ellen Einebrant, from the Swedish Recycling Industries and representative of The Recycling Sector roadmap, represents the private companies, 80% of the sector, handle 10 MTons of waste and recycled material. The sector work to increase recycling and resource efficiency, still its main challenge is how to reduce their emissions, where the biggest emitter is landfill. The roadmap has made a call to politicians to introduce a methane capture requirement.



Fossil Free Sweden is a national initiative working to increase the pace of the climate transition. 22 Industry Roadmaps have been created to identify opportunities that the climate transition can provide for these industries and how it can be used as a commercial advantage.  With a “bottom-up approach” industries created their own vision and targets and identified obstacles and proposals for solutions towards their journey for a fossil free competitiveness delivering on Sweden’s national net zero greenhouse gas emission target by 2045.


VIEW THE ONLINE RECORDING HERE: Roadmaps for Fossil Free Competitiveness – Webinar 7 September 2021 – YouTube

Keep your eyes on the SACC socials Linkedin and Facebook for further updates as announcements are made about future events, and check out the Recent Events and Webinars page on the SACC website for summaries and recordings of our recent presentations. Please contact us for questions and further information: sacc@swedishchamber.com.au.

Swedish Chambers APAC Online Event 2 Sept with Economist Klas Eklund

Summary and recording of Swedish Chambers APAC Online Event 2 Sept with Economist Mr Klas Eklund​​, Senior Economist at Mannheimer Swartling​, on the World Economy

During this virtual fireside-style chat, we were given the rare opportunity to tap into the wealth of knowledge of Mr Eklund and gain insight into his views and perspectives of the world economy in the wake of the pandemic. The session includes Q&A from the audience.

Mr Eklund is one of Sweden’s most prominent economists and a sought-after financial adviser with a long career and unique expertise from the private sector – most notably many years as Chief Economist at SEB – as well as from the Swedish Government Offices. He is the author of several well-known titles in the genres of economics, history, and fiction. Mr Eklund has been awarded His Majesty the King’s Gold Medal for outstanding services as an economist and has received the Jacob Palmstierna Award for economic pedagogy. For many Swedes, he is probably first and foremost known for his years within the Swedish Ministry of Finance where he held many different positions, including Economic Policy Advisor to the Prime Minister and Minister of Finance. Last year, Mr Eklund chaired the Commission to Restart Sweden​ – an initiative established by Stockholm Chamber of Commerce to reboot and strengthen Sweden after the corona crisis. Commission members included eleven of Sweden’s most prominent experts within a number of strategically important reform areas.

In recent years, much of Mr Eklund’s work has been dedicated to the economics of climate change. He has published several books on the topic and he has been a member of the Swedish initiative Task Force on Green Finance Reform and Green Transformation​ – CCICED (China Council of International Co-operation and Environmental Development). To the younger Swedish audience, Mr Eklund is well-known for his tongue-in-cheek educational short films Klas Förklarar​, where he explains fundamental economic terms and concepts – including the corona crisis – in a plain and simple language.

Mr Eklund will be introduced by Jakob Ragnwaldh​, Partner, Mannheimer Swartling Singapore.

ModeratorsEmil Akander​, Sweden’s Trade Commissioner to Singapore, and Lisa Ferraton​, General Manager, Swedish Chamber of Commerce Singapore.

SACC contact: sacc@swedishchamber.com.au



Summary and recording SACC online event 26 Aug – Insight to the Gaming Industry

The gaming industry is arguably one of the most important and innovative sectors in tech today. Its importance to culture, social networking and entertainment cannot be understated. The term “entertainment industry” is no longer reserved for the film industry as gaming is now providing one of the most immersive forms of entertainment to more than two billion people around the globe.

At this online event we listen to topic experts Tomas Rossel, Founder of Spawn Ventures  Roger Clarke, Managing Director at Koch Media (owned by listed Swedish company Embracer Group).

Tomas and Roger shared their insight on the gaming industry, its size, value chain, key industry players, industry trends and what’s new in Australia and Sweden.


The event included an interactive Q&A session with the option to ask live questions.

For more information contact: Tomas Rossel on tomas@spawnventures.vc or Roger Clarke on r.clarke@kochmedia.com.au


Summary and recording of SACC Online Event 12 Aug – How to build team culture remotely

This online event was organised with SACC company member 100 Point Challenge covering how to build team culture remotely with an interactive social team game. The session is led by Stockholm based Dan Paech, CEO and Co-founder of 100 Point Challenge, who gave us practical tips and methods on how to overcome challenges and maintain team culture while working remotely.

Dan is the founder and CEO of the 100 Point Challenge, an events company providing a range of unique games and experiences in
both the B2B and B2C space. Games are online and outdoors. Dan manage all aspects of the business, including 20+ staff.

Since 2017 the 100 Point Challenge have organised events for some of the most well known companies in the world – including Spotify, Microsoft, Google, Booking.com, Volvo, PWC, Boston Consulting Group, Air France, H&M, and NHL team, the New Jersey Devils. For this SACC online event, we invited company member Absolute Immigration, who took us through Australia’s latest immigration and visa changes and the travel exemptions in place to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. 

This was an interactive online event set up in two parts one presentation part followed by live questions and one game part with teams in breakout rooms, which has not been recorded.

For information on 100 Point Challenge online and in person team building games please contact dan.paech@100pointchallenge.com

SACC contact: sacc@swedishchamber.com.au


Summary and recording of SACC Online Event 15 July – Navigating Australia’s visa system and travel exemptions in a COVID environment

For this SACC online event, we invited company member Absolute Immigration, who took us through Australia’s latest immigration and visa changes and the travel exemptions in place to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. 


The Q&A session was led by Mikael Dahlgren, CFO Alfa Laval and SACC Board Member and the event topic was presented by Jamie Lingham, Founder & CEO of Absolute Immigration, who covered the following areas/questions:

  • What does the Australian visa landscape look like at the moment?
  • What can companies do to get travel exemptions to enter Australia, especially when the occupation is not on the priority list?
  • Travel exemptions to exit Australia.
  • Predictions over the next 12 months for Australia’s visa program.

This was an interactive online event set up as a meeting with the opportunity for participants to ask questions live.


Below you will find more details about the specific areas discussed in the meeting.


Travel exemptions – outbound

Temporary visa holders do not need an exemption to depart Australia. They can leave at any time, as long as border restrictions in their home country allow them to return.

Please note that they will generally not be permitted to return to Australia.

Temporary visa holders seeking to leave and then return to Australia, may apply for an inwards exemption before they leave, however applications will generally only be approved if they meet the requirements for an individual exemption from Australia’s Inward Travel Restrictions, and they have a strong compassionate or compelling reason to leave Australia supported by relevant documentary evidence.

If you are an Australian citizen or a permanent resident you cannot leave Australia due to COVID-19 restrictions unless you have an exemption. You must meet at least one of the following:

  • your travel is as part of the response to the COVID-19 outbreak, including the provision of aid
  • your travel is for your business/employer
  • you are travelling to receive urgent medical treatment that is not available in Australia
  • you are travelling outside Australia for a compelling reason for three months or longer
  • you are travelling on compelling or compassionate grounds
  • your travel is in the national interest.

Travel exemption – inbound

You are automatically exempt from the travel restrictions and can enter Australia (without obtaining an individual exemption) if you are:

For all other persons who hold a visa, the Australian Border Force may grant you an individual exemption if you are:

  • a foreign national travelling at the invitation of the Australian Government or a state or territory government authority for the purpose of assisting in the COVID-19 response
  • a foreign national whose entry into Australia would be in the national interest, supported by the Australian Government or a state or territory government authority
  • providing critical or specialist medical services, including air ambulance, medical evacuations and delivering critical medical supplies
  • a foreign national with critical skills or working in a critical sector in Australia
  • a foreign national sponsored by your employer to work in Australia in an occupation on the Priority Migration Skilled Occupation List (PMSOL)(see below)
  • military personnel, including those who form part of the Status of Forces Agreement, Commonwealth Armed Forces, Asia Pacific Forces and Status of Armed Forces Agreement
  • a person who resides on a vessel that seeks safe port at the closest appointed port for reprovisioning or safety reasons for a limited duration, supported by the relevant State or Territory government where safe haven is sought
  • students who have been selected to take part in an International Student Arrivals Plan that has been approved by the relevant state or territory government, and endorsed by the Department of Education, Skills and Employment as satisfying the Protocols and Preconditions for International Student Arrivals.
  • students who are in their final three years of study of a medical university degree, who have evidence of a confirmed placement in an Australian hospital or medical practice. The placement must commence within the next two months, and provide medical services to the Australian public.
  • a student completing year 11 and 12, with endorsement from the Department of Education, Skills and Employment (DESE), and support from the relevant state or territory government health and education authorities. Further information regarding this process can be found at the Department of Education, Skills and Employment website.
  • a student in your final two years of study of a dental, nursing or allied health profession university degree, where you have evidence of a confirmed placement in an Australian hospital or medical practice which begins within the next two months.
  • travelling for compassionate and compelling reasons.

Visas for onshore applicants

Visa applicants in Australia are currently experiencing slower processing times but the applications are still being processed.

Visas for offshore applicants

Visa applicants outside Australia are currently experiencing major delays and a lot of visa subclasses have been suspended until such time that the borders re-open. The Department continue to process 482 and 186 visas for those who fall on the Priority Migration Skilled Occupation List (PMSOL). The PMSOL 41 occupations (ANZSCO code) are:

  1. Chief Executive or Managing Director (111111)
  2. Construction Project Manager (133111)
  3. Accountant (General) (221111)
  4. Management Accountant (221112)
  5. Taxation Accountant (221113)
  6. External Auditor (221213)
  7. Internal Auditor (221214)
  8. Surveyor (232212)
  9. Cartographer (232213)
  10. Other Spatial Scientist (232214)
  11. Civil Engineer (233211)
  12. Geotechnical Engineer (233212)
  13. Structural Engineer (233214)
  14. Transport Engineer (233215)
  15. Electrical Engineer (233311)
  16. Mechanical Engineer (233512)
  17. Mining Engineer (excluding Petroleum) (233611)
  18. Petroleum Engineer (233612)
  19. Medical Laboratory Scientist (234611)
  20. Veterinarian (234711)
  21. Orthotist or Prosthetist (251912)
  22. General Practitioner (253111)
  23. Resident Medical Officer (253112)
  24. Psychiatrist (253411)
  25. Medical Practitioners nec (253999)
  26. Midwife (254111)
  27. Registered Nurse (Aged Care) (254412)
  28. Registered Nurse (Critical Care and Emergency) (254415)
  29. Registered Nurse (Medical) (254418)
  30. Registered Nurse (Mental Health) (254422)
  31. Registered Nurse (Perioperative) (254423)
  32. Registered Nurses nec (254499)
  33. Multimedia Specialist (261211)
  34. Analyst Programmer (261311)
  35. Developer Programmer (261312)
  36. Software Engineer (261313)
  37. Software and Applications Programmers nec (261399)
  38. ICT Security Specialist (262112)
  39. Social Worker (272511)
  40. Maintenance Planner (312911)
  41. Chef (351311)


For more information please contact Absolute Immigration on 

1300 227 658 or email aisupport@absoluteimmigration.com

To keep up-to-date with policy changes and the effects on visa holders and businesses, subscribe to our newsletter and follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Linked In.

SACC contact: sacc@swedishchamber.com.au

Swedish Midsummer Celebrations in Melbourne

The SACC YP Melbourne Chapter was lucky to follow through with the planned Swedish Midsummer Celebrations on 26 June at café ÖPPEN with a traditional Swedish Midsummer menu, aquavit and ‘Helan Går’ echoing all the way to lockdown Sydney.

Thank you to Café Öppen and all lovely people that attended plus IKEA for sponsoring this event with additional Swedish food goodness. The next upcoming event will be a Crayfish party together with the other Scandinavian chambers and let’s hope that the SACC YP Sydney will be able to join in for this festive celebration.  

Austrade Webinar 17 June – Sweden’s Innovation Ecosystem – Overview and Insights

SACC members were invited to join this webinar facilitated by Austrade – Sweden’s Innovation Ecosystem – Overview and Insights, 17 June.

This webinar was part of an initiative by Austrade’s virtual landing pad in Europe, and was designed to give you an initial snapshot of the Swedish ecosystem for tech companies. There is much more to learn about other parts of the Swedish innovation ecosystem.

Let us know if you would like to learn more, have any questions and if we can help connect you with others in our network.Sweden is world renowned for being an innovative nation – 2nd and 5th in the latest global innovation rankings. Stockholm is one of the hottest entrepreneurship hubs in Europe. What’s in Sweden’s secret sauce? What are the opportunities?

A great line-up of speakers shared their insights about Sweden’s vibrant ecosystem for innovation and entrepreneurship.

  • Jennifer Mackinlay – Acting General Manager Austrade Europe – welcome and introduction
  • Arash Sangari – Program Manager, Startup Sweden. Arash gave us an overview of the ecosystem and how Startup Sweden as a national program provides entrepreneur-centred support to Swedish startups and scaleups.
  • Warren Campbell – Australian entrepreneur and investor based in Sweden for the last 15 years. Former McKinsey partner, founder and CEO of a pan-European renewables business, Warren is today an active angel investor in circa 30 Nordic startups, as well as an Investment Committee member of two early stage investment funds. Warren shared perspectives on early stage investing.
  • Leni Andronicos – co-founder and CEO of Logcast, the world’s first social podcasting app built out of Sweden. Leni moved to Stockholm from Sydney in 2018. She gave insights about founding a successful tech start up in the Nordics, raising capital from local venture capital institutions and establishing her profile in Sweden.
  • Kerstin Classon – Investment Director Nordics, Austrade Stockholm – moderator


Below are some further links of interest:

Please contact Austrade Stockholm stockholm@austrade.gov.au if you would like further information and a copy of the presentation.

Frontiers of Learning online event delivered by Sana Labs – global leader in AI for learning

Swedish company Sana Labs, a global leader in AI for learning, invited SACC Members and Guests to Frontiers of Learning, online event on 9 June, celebrating the pioneering people, technology, and processes at the very forefront of workplace learning.

Some of the most prominent minds in learning and AI research today were gathered to showcase what the future of workplace learning will look like:

  • Simon Brown, CLO Novartis
  • Peter Manniche Riber, Head of Digital Learning Novo Nordisk 
  • Lori Niles-Hofmann, NilesNolen
  • Danica Kragic, Robotics professor at KTH 

They covered:

  • Why curiosity is the next big super-skill
  • How to make learning measurable and tied to business results
  • What the future of workplace learning will look like

Participants also heard about artificial intelligence and learning science from Sana Labs: how they’re making personalised learning possible and what that means for organisations in the future.

You can watch the full online event here


About Sana Labs:

Sana Labs is the global leader in the development and application of AI for learning. Founded in Stockholm, Sweden, we partner with Fortune 500 organizations to bring the benefits of AI to millions of learners. Our interdisciplinary team consists of researchers and engineers with backgrounds ranging from Google AI and Spotify to BCG Gamma and Imperial College.