Sweden in London


Sweden is a small country of only 9 million inhabitants. Quite a large area of the country is in the Arctic Circle with extreme weather conditions, particularly in winter. Despite this, however, Sweden has created and developed brands which are known throughout the world. I am sure most people have heard of more than half of the following list:

  • ABBA
  • Absolut Vodka
  • AGA stoves
  • Alfred Nobel
  • Anders Zorn
  • Astra-Zeneca
  • August Strindberg
  • Avicii
  • Björn Borg
  • Candy Crush
  • Carl and Karin Larsson
  • Carl Linnaeus (created the classification system for plants and animals)
  • Carl Milles
  • Celsius measurement of temperature
  • Cheap Monday
  • Electrolux
  • Ericsson
  • Gant
  • H & M
  • Hasselblad cameras
  • Henning Mankel
  • Husqvarna
  • IKEA
  • Ingrid and Ingmar Bergman
  • Minecraft
  • Napster
  • Pippi Longstocking
  • Pirate Bay
  • Saab
  • Scania
  • SKF ballbearings
  • Skype
  • Spotify
  • Stieg Larsson’s Millennium Trilogy
  • Swedish House Mafia
  • TetraPak
  • The Nobel Prize
  • The Skarsgårds
  • Volvo

When I was in London last week, I saw that more and more Swedish brands are available in the UK.  A walk down Carnaby Street revealed four Swedish shops within a few metres – Cheap Monday, Monki, WESC, Make Up Store. Other Swedish brands now available in London are:

  • Acne (fashion)
  • BLK DNM (fashion)
  • Boomerang
  • Byredo (perfume)
  • Clas Ohlson (hardware)
  • COS, Monki, Cheap Monday, Weekday, & other stories, H & M (all belonging to the H & M group)
  • Dagmar (fashion)
  • Efva Attling (jewellery)
  • Estelle & Thilde (beauty)
  • Face Stockholm (beauty)
  • Filippa K (fashion)
  • Fjällräven (fashion)
  • Gant (fashion)
  • Gudrun Sjödén (fashion)
  • Haglöfs (fashion)
  • HunkyDory (fashion)
  • IKEA
  • J Lindeberg (fashion)
  • Koenigsegg
  • Make Up Store (beauty)
  • Nudie (fashion)
  • Ordning & Reda (stationery)
  • Oriflame (beauty)
  • Peak Performance (fashion)
  • Pixi (beauty)
  • Polarn O Pyret
  • Pop Beauty (beauty)
  • Tiger of Sweden (fashion)
  • WESC (fashion)

Why such a small country has so many brands famous in other countries is I have no idea.

  • Maybe the Lutheran ideal that permeates so much of the Swedish culture, even today, leads to industriousness, hard work and honesty.
  • Maybe the weather keeps people indoors where they need to keep busy.
  • Maybe it is the fact that Sweden has always invested in free education and life-long learning for its people.
  • Maybe it is the fact that Sweden makes it easy for innovation and entrepreneurship to flourish by making it easy to start small companies.

Whatever it is, there is no doubt that Sweden has a presence in international markets which totally belies its size.

Author: Janet Carr

Fashion, beauty and animal loving language consultant from South Africa living in Stockholm, Sweden.

5 thoughts

  1. I agree with you, it is phenomenon! Is it difficult for a foreigner to get a citizenship? Do you know anything about it?

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