Sweden’s new north is on the rise – and so are the tech firms as they work with big industry towards a greener future

Huge investments are being made in the north of Sweden as new and established actors launch game-changing operations. Mega factories, Greentech innovations and cross-industry collaborations are all part of the new north. Head of IT and IoT, AnnaCarin Falkman, at northern-based Swedish tech innovators Data Ductus talks about their role in this.

AnnaCarin Falkman, Head of IT and IoT at Data Ductus

How is Data Ductus involved in the development?  
Big things are happening, especially around CO2 emission reduction within heavy industry. Here in the town of Skellefteå, for instance, Northvolt’s lithium battery giga-factory is under construction. At Data Ductus we are involved in a lot of innovative projects involving CO2 emission reduction. For instance, we’re designing an automated inspection system using microscopic images on iron ore for the LKAB mining company – which will support them in developing more energy efficient pellets. We’re also developing an AI prediction tool that will reduce fossil fuel consumption for EnVisA, a collaboration between Swedish steel manufacturer, SSAB, the Luleå Kraft power company and the Sverim Metal Research Institute.  

What’s the biggest challenge moving forward? 
We need more people! I hope and expect more people to move to the north to take part in this enormous sustainability initiative within big industry. Our universities will have to educate even more engineers. It’s going to be exciting with high-tech development required to solve major challenges.  

Why do companies choose you for innovative tech?  
We have highly skilled software engineers that like to be challenged. We work with cross pollination across competencies and industries within our different business units. And by collaborating closely with clients and utilizing their domain expertise, we develop creative value-adding solutions.  

How important is it to have offices close to clients?  
The pandemic has taught us to work remotely and to take advantage of our networks and ecosystems, but nothing beats meeting face to face. With offices stretching from the northern to the southern tip of Sweden, and multiple locations around the world, we can go to our clients, see their operations and envisage solutions to their challenges. Much of the development can then be spread amongst our development teams, regardless of if they are sat in Denver, Singapore, Malmö or Luleå. We have the expertise to deliver through our distributed teams. 

What other projects is Data Ductus working on now? 
We’re a global partner of Cisco, developing network automation solutions for Fortune 500 companies; we’re developing compliant medtech software and designing secure cloud environments for diverse clients; and we’re running IT service desks for industry and local government. We’ve also developed a proving ground management system used by many of the world’s leading car manufacturers when testing vehicles in extreme winter conditions, up north. And we’re even in space, well at least our solutions are. 

What’s next for Data Ductus? 
We’re in a growth phase just like the north. We’re developing digital solutions that make a difference to society, IT for good you could say. So, for anybody who feels a calling to the north, I’d just like to say, welcome to where IT happens!

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