Swedish startup Universal Avenue, a digitisation platform for SMEs, scales up with the acquisition of Varvet

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Stockholm-based Universal Avenue, a business digitisation and customer acquisition platform, is scaling-up with the acquisition of the Swedish digital agency Varvet. The deal is a strategic move aimed at improving Universal Avenue’s technical platform. Universal Avenue has also secured €5.3 million in Series B funding through a convertible bond from MOOR Capital. We previously wrote about Universal Avenue, as one of the top Swedish startups to look out for it 2016.

Founded in 2014, Universal Avenue offers a range of solutions to help digitalise SMEs, including an app that lets startups hire brand ambassadors on-demand. Over 25,000 businesses have used the startup’s platform to date.

Digital agency Varvet has offered its clients customised digital solutions, tools and apps since its founding in 2008 – working with companies ranging from startups to large, well-established corporations such as Electronic Arts and Hemnet.

Johan Lilja, CEO and founder of Universal Avenue, said: “Digital development is the core of our business model. We’re delighted that Varvet and its team of amazing developers are joining the Universal Avenue family. The Varvet team will help us accelerate and strengthen our ability to meet increasing market demand for our platform.”

Carl-Johan Kihlbom, a partner at Varvet, said: “We see huge potential in Universal Avenue’s business model and their digital platform. Varvet and Universal Avenue are a great fit thanks to our shared ambition of creating digital solutions that actually make a difference.” 

Kaj Hed, from MOOR Capital, said: “Universal Avenue is an underestimated player in the market. Our increased engagement in the company demonstrates that we believe in the business and recognise its potential. The acquisition of Varvet can accelerate Universal Avenue’s deliverables and will strengthen the company´s potential in Sweden and globally.” 

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