grand oneGrand One 2009, a competition for the Finnish new media scene to showcase their year’s work, came and went. As we wrote earlier on, we got an invitation to partner with Grand One since they want to push the event forward every year and be on the pulse of all things digital, which is nothing short of admirable. This time being on the pulse meant to invite startups to the competition. This was the first time ever! If someone has missed (or ignored) the fact that startups have lately entred the mainstream hear in the Northern Europe and become the cool thing to do, now even they have to recognize the shift: When the marketing scene comes knocking on the door it means you have just hit the mainstreet.

This is good news for all of us. Yesterday Antti wrote about how The Economist argues that culture makes almost all the difference beyond everything else, be it incubators, university programs, smart people, VCs, all of it. This is a view that we subscribe to and consequntly aim to help create a radically optimistic entrepreneurial culture here in the Nordics and Baltics. Now, I believe we’re are one step closer to such a culture of which Grand One is a very vivid, even if a small example.

Before it was cool thing say to your friends that you play in a band, now increasingly the cool thing to do is telling them you’re an entrepreneur.

At Grand One we saw some of these modern day rock starts: Muxlim won the best Startup category, Eat.fi won the best Info Design category and Tripsay picked-up honorary mentions in several categories.

Congrats to all the finalists! It’s nice to be in a band, but nothing compares to be an entrepreneur.

Disclosure: The writer was a judge at the Grand One 2009 Startup category

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