Niklas Zennström

CEO & Founding Partner

Born: 1966

Niklas Zennström is a serial entrepreneur and investor who founded Atomico. He previously co-founded and managed technology companies-Skype, Kazaa, Joost and Joltid.

In 2006 Niklas created Atomico, having realized that conventional venture capital firms were struggling to identify, value and develop high-technology companies effectively. It has so far invested in more than 50 companies across four continents. He sits on the boards of Atomico portfolio companies: Rovio, Fon and Jolicloud.

Niklas is best known for co-founding Skype, where he held the position of CEO from its inception until September 2007. In 2005, Skype was sold to eBay Inc for $3.1bn, the largest European venture capital exit to date. Subsequent to this, Skype was bought back by a consortium that included Niklas, and was sold to Microsoft for $8.5 billion cash in 2011.

In 2006, Niklas was recognised by Time Magazine as one of its 100 Most Influential People, and has received numerous other awards for entrepreneurship. In 2011 he was awarded a lifetime achievement award by the Oxford Internet Institute.

In 2007, he co-founded Zennström Philanthropies, where he is actively involved in combating climate change, improving the state of the Baltic Sea and encouraging social entrepreneurship.

Niklas holds dual degrees in Business and MSc Engineering Physics/Computer Science from Uppsala University in Sweden, and he spent his final year at the University of Michigan.

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Secretariat of 16th Nikkei Global Management Forum (NGMF2014)