sup46

How YouModels is helping shift the modelling industry to digital

How YouModels is shifting the modelling industry to digital

SUP46 member YouModels.com is an online platform for booking and managing models with agency contracts. Their unique search engine allows advertisers to easily find and “book the look” without multiple contact points at different agencies. We asked founder Laura Lilja a few questions about their recent funding round and merge with Global Models Inc.

 

– How did you get the idea for YouModels?
The idea of YouModels came back in 2011 when one of our founders needed to book a model for a campaign. He found the process was very time consuming and it was hard to find what he was looking for, so the idea of a platform that collects all of the world’s models in the same place, where it is possible to search for the exact looks and/or measurements, and in an exact location was born. Basically like Booking.com for professional models.

– What is the biggest challenge the model industry faces at the moment would you say, and why?
The model industry is very fragmented and competitive, and agencies are in generally very small, with no money to invest in marketing or tech. There is no centralized booking solution for professional models and the industry itself is very old-fashioned, but it recognizes that there needs to be a shift to digital.

– You recently merged with Global Models Inc and at the same time took in some funding, can you tell us a bit more about why they were a good fit?
Global Models inc is a scouting platform for models. It was founded by Maud Kerzendörfer who has been working as a model scout for 30 years, scouting models for IMG, Ford, Wilhelmina, Mikas, etc. The Global Models inc website and business idea was very similar to YouModels, both wanted to digitalize model industry, whereas Global Models inc was focusing on freelance models and YouModels only professional models. Through this merge we can cover an even bigger part of the model industry, all the way from scouting to bookings of both commercial and freelance models. Maud’s industry knowledge and network is priceless and something that YouModels was lacking earlier. YouModels on the other hand is contributing with our strong business side and technical team.

Global Models inc already has a steady revenue flow and around 11,000 members. The plan for the rest of the year is to focus mainly on Global Models inc – to grow the number of members (freelance/commercial models) on the site and get more of them to convert to premium (paying) members.

We recently changed the company name and now have an umbrella brand, Global Models Group, for the two platforms.

– Where do you see your company in 12 months’ time?
We have managed to achieve a strong position in Sweden as a “booking hub” for commercial models (GM inc) and are steadily entering the professional model market, where model agencies see us as a marketing tool for their models rather than a competitor. We are also doing conversion analyses for a few different e-commerce companies that have managed to increase their revenues through optimized model selection.

We have also raised more money to accelerate the growth by hiring more key persons within sales and tech/data.

– What does “conversion analysis” mean?
In brief: imagine two different models wearing the same clothes. One model sells the clothes much better than the other. E-commerce companies recognize that this is a fact but have yet to analyse; Why? What attributes makes one model sell better e.g. sports- or swimwear?

We can do a data analyses based on their website data, find certain patterns and identify the model attributes that are affecting the click-through-rate and conversion positively. Through this approach an e-commerce company can increase their revenues significantly, only by optimizing the model selection, or finding the best “Brand-Model-Profile”.

– How do you see that a SUP46 membership can contribute to you reaching your goals?
SUP46 has an extensive network both within investors and other companies. Through this network we are able to meet and discuss with people who can give us important feedback based on their success/failure. It is also a great meeting point with inspiring individuals and companies, and that gives us positive energy.

– What do you wish you would have known before commencing your startup journey?
You really need to be excellent in sales!

– What is SUP46 to you in one word?
Inspiration.

 


Detectify’s researchers analyzed 30,000 e-commerce stores

Detectify’s researchers analyzed 30,000 e-commerce stores

As the holiday season draws closer, the security researchers at Detectify have taken a deep dive into e-commerce security and analyzed 30,000 of the world’s most popular Magento stores. The results show that many online retailers are making serious security mistakes – in this article you will find out more about Detectify’s research and also learn how to keep your e-commerce business safe.

30,000 online stores vs 3 publicly available vulnerabilities

To take a quick snapshot of Magento stores’ security across the globe, the Detectify team analyzed 30,000 of the world’s most popular Magento sites based on Alexa rankings. The sample was then checked for 3 publicly available vulnerabilities as well as forced HTTPS, a basic security measure that prevents attackers from intercepting sensitive information.

Configuration file available on 500 stores
The /app/etc./local.xml file was a configuration file that contained the hidden path to the admin pane and the database password. Note the past tense here – this is an old vulnerability that isn’t a problem if you’re using a updated version of Magento. Magento stores running on servers other than Apache would serve this file to anyone, which is pretty bad, but what’s really scary is that 500 of the world’s top Magento stores are still vulnerable.

Exposed order history on 1,500 sites
Let’s talk about /RSS/order/NEW/new . This is an API for order history without any server-side authentication, allowing anyone to access sensitive order history data including customers’ personal information. This vulnerability was patched two years ago, but was still found it on 1,500 sites.

7,000 exposed admin panels
Leaving your admin panel exposed at /admin is the exact opposite of a best practice as it makes it easier for hackers to try and log in. Magento generates a warning if you make this mistake, but 7,000 of the webshops in the sample have an exposed admin panel.

50% missing HTTPS by default
Protecting customers by ensuring they are using HTTPS is becoming an increasingly common best practice, especially for businesses that are handling sensitive information like credit card details. Despite this, a surprising half of the web stores analyzed by Detectify do not use HTTPS by default.

5 quick security tips from Detectify’s security experts

1. Keep your platform up to date
This applies to all e-commerce solutions, not only Magento! Updates often include security patches – the vulnerabilities Detectify’s researchers checked for in their analysis have all been patched in newer versions.

2. Make sure your admin panel is not exposed
This is not a critical vulnerability in itself, but it broadens the attack surface and paves the way for attackers to try and bruteforce your password.

3. Implement HTTPS by default
Your customers might not be as tech-savvy as you are and chances are they don’t know how to manually switch to https. To keep them and their data safe, set up HTTPS by default.

4. Use a strong password
Weak and easy-to-guess passwords like password, 123456, and admin are still surprisingly common. If you need help coming up with and remembering strong passwords, consider using a password manager.

5. Monitor your security
Staying up to date with the latest vulnerabilities is time-consuming, but luckily, automation can do the heavy lifting. Detectify is an automated security monitoring service for web applications and was built by the cool people who did the research behind this article.

 

Curious about how a hacker would analyze and attack a Magento website? Sign up for Detectify’s video seminar where security researchers Linus Särud, 18, and Fredrik Almroth, 27, share their insights and advice on e-commerce security.


Meet the team – Tatjana

MEET THE SUP46 TEAM – TATJANA

Our Event Space sees around 250 events every year. The person keeping track of them all and making sure they are all of high quality and in one way or another relevant to the tech and startup scene is our Event Manager Tatjana. She is also the one responsible for SUP46’s own external events, such as our FemTech event series. Get to know her and how she ended up at SUP46 a bit better below!

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  • How did you end up at SUP46?

I ended up rather accidentally at SUP46. My background is from Event Management in the entertainment industry in Germany, I worked for Musicians, Comedians and TV Productions for more than 7 years. I moved to Sweden in 2011 as a “love refugee” and helped organizing the event “Stockholm Investing in Women Meetup” with my husband at SUP46. Here I bumped into Nathalie, then Event Manager and also Co-Founder of SUP46. She liked what I was doing and invited me for coffee to talk more about whether I would be interested in working with SUP46 and their events.

I started off as an Event Intern when SUP46 was just 5 months young. 3 months later I got hired as their Event Coordinator and just a few months after that when Nathalie decided to move on from her position to become the Community Manager, I took over her role as Event Manager. Before that I had never heard of Startups, VC’s, Unicorns (always thought it was just a magical horse 😉 ) and all those typical words you use in the Startup Scene. But I found it exciting, something new and totally different to what I did before. I like the environment and excitement of the people wanting to make a change.

  • What does your role at SUP46 entitle?

Being the Event Manager at SUP46 means mainly to be the contact person for all event requests for our event venue. Making sure their event will be a success through marketing support as well as giving them input on speakers and startups for their events. But I also organize SUP46’s own branded events like our Happy Hours, SUP46 FemTech, Demo Day and Swedish Startup Gala just to name a few. We have also started to be more present at other Startup Conferences like SLUSH where we took our Happy Hour concept on tour to Helsinki together with Stockholm Business Region.

I am also in charge of our conference rooms and the recently opened Startup Café by SUP46 where my role as a Creative Designer has been relevant. This happened during the planning of our move to the new venue at Regeringsgatan 65. Somehow I ended up designing our new venue and giving it the SUP46 feeling we were looking for and naturally the next step was to design and create a concept for the Startup Café as well.

  • What do you like best about your job?

The best thing about working at SUP46 is that you can take on projects that you have a passion for, even though they might not have been part of your role before. Or simply be creative by taking on new ideas and projects within your field. I enjoyed designing the new venue a lot and turning all our ideas that we had since 2014 into a physical space. I remember that one of our first workshops we had in 2014 was about the ideal SUP46 venue in 2016 and it’s great to see that we managed to implement almost everything we dreamed of.

When it comes to events I enjoy creating events where people leave with the feeling of satisfaction, to be able to have made some great contacts or simply got inspired. I think that’s what I am giving back to the community. Creating a place for people to meet, make contacts, get inspired, finding business partners or simply helping our startups through events like Demo Day to get connections to investors.

  • If you were starting your own scalable business tomorrow, what would it be all about?

I think it would be something in the field of events and/or design. I have been working with events for a very long time and all kinds of sizes. This is something I know by heart. The interest in design has always been there but in the last years it has become a bigger part of my work.

I remember a dinner party last year together with SLUSH and Startup Sauna and just for fun everybody needed to come up spontaneously with a business idea. I pitched the idea of having a platform to easily get help to design your home and especially to figure out what your style is through a questionnaire and get easy access to any kind of furniture. I think this field should be more easily accessible to any kind of consumer. I had at least two VC’s from Startup Sauna who wanted to invest! 😉

And if I do not find the right event management platform very soon, which suits my needs as an Event Manager at a startup hub, I think I have to start building it from scratch myself. So far I have not found a suitable one.

  • What is SUP46 to you in one word?

PASSION

 

If you want to host an event in our event space or rent a conference room for your next meeting, feel free to get in touch with Tatjana!


Four reasons why MTG invested in InnoGames

WHY MTG INVESTED IN INNOGAMES, AND WHAT COMES NEXT

We just invested in a games company. We’d never done that before. But it probably won’t be the last time.

innogames

A few weeks ago, we took a 35% stake in InnoGames, an online games developer and publisher. We have an option to go up to 51% next year, and to increase our shareholding even further over time.

But don’t you guys work in TV? Yep, we do. We’re super-proud of our broadcasting business, which has the industry’s largest content portfolio and delivers multi-screen experiences to viewers across Europe. What we’re doing with InnoGames is part of MTG’s strategy to transform into a leading digital entertainment provider.

We’re already the world’s biggest esports company – our ESL and DreamHack businesses will engage over 250 million fans in 2016. At the same time, our multi-platform networks (MPNs) Zoomin.TV and Splay generate 2.5 billion online views every month, 25% of which relate to gaming content.

So you could say gaming is a thread that already runs through our digital portfolio. It’s a multi-billion-dollar industry, with more than 2 billion players worldwide. For us, it therefore makes perfect sense to add gaming as our third digital entertainment vertical alongside esports and MPNs, giving us huge opportunities to create cross-promotions and synergies.

We will continue investing in all these areas. Of course, there are a whole bunch of games companies around – including some great ones at SUP46. Here are four reasons why we made InnoGames our first move in this space:

  1. Amazing games. InnoGames’ titles such as Elvenar, Grepolis and Forge of Empires have generated more than 150 million registered players.
  2. A proven financial track record. InnoGames has been profitable from year one and margins are high and stable. The company’s revenues have grown 20% every year for the last three years, and should hit EUR 125 million in 2016.
  3. A sustainable model. InnoGames operates a 100% free-to-play model with revenues coming from in-game purchasing. It develops multiple cross-platform titles, rather than a single blockbuster. And the games constantly evolve, keeping players engaged for years.
  4. Successful in mobile. Mobile is the fastest growing gaming segment, thanks to large audiences and more paying players. Today, 50% of InnoGames’ new users register on mobile platforms, and the company has some really exciting mobile-only titles in development.

All these things were really important in our decision – but don’t take this as an exhaustive checklist. As an entrepreneur myself, I know that the most successful start-ups are often those that break the rules completely.

Every rule, that is, except one.

Whatever your business, you have to love what you do. It’s about feeling an urgent hunger to disrupt everything – you wake up each morning wanting to change the world.

Passion, in other words, is at the heart of the entrepreneurial spirit. InnoGames has it. MTG has it. And so do the companies in which we’ll invest next.

/Arnd Benninghoff, CEO at MTGx

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What it’s like to be a SUP46 member

WHAT IT’S LIKE TO BE A SUP46 MEMBER

Now that you know how to become a SUP46 member, perhaps it would be interesting to know what it means to be one? Maybe hear from a current member, someone that has been with us for long enough to have an opinion on most things SUP46? We decided to sit down with the founders of It’s My Styl, Josephine and Felicia to ask them a few questions about their SUP46 experience.

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–  Tell us a bit about your startup?

We’re running the app It’s My Styl, which is a social network for teenagers within lifestyle and fashion. The vision is to be an inspirational platform where young girls across the world can be creative and communicate about daily life with friends and likeminded. It’s My Styl is a 100% user driven community where the user both create and consume the content. We’re able to crowd-source trends among young women and can deliver deeper insights and niched target groups.

We’re a team of four based in Stockholm with a passion for building an excellent product for this new digital generation.

– Why did you first apply to become a SUP46 member?

We applied because we heard about “this cool place” which just had opened and were supporting awesome startups. We’re originally from Kalmar and moved to Stockholm because of the need for a community that could contribute with a location and an awesome network.

– What benefits have you experienced from sitting at SUP46?

The SUP46 community and network have been extremely important and beneficial for us, everyone is very helpful and want you to succeed. All from investor relations, media coverage, tech events and of course – a bunch of new friends!

– In what way do you interact with other people at SUP46?

We have not only gotten new friends in the SUP46-community, but have also been able to get new business partners. We’re for instance using 46Elks sms-service so our users can easily login and reset their password with their phone number. We’ve also collaborated with the Influencer marketing startup Beatly that helped us with a campaign to reach our target group in social media!

Also, you’ll always find interesting tech people, students and companies at SUP46’s monthly event Happy Hours, which is open for everyone, not just members.

– What are you aiming to accomplish within the next six months?

We want to close our ongoing seed-round and expand our team with one UX designer.

A lot of fun things are also going to happen on the product side! The app is going to get a whole new look AND soon we’re launching on Android where actually 50% of our target group is – so we’re hoping to be ready for a nice growth curve in the beginning of next year!

The majority of our stylistas are from Sweden today but we can see that the Finnish users is going to increase with 10% within these coming 6 months as well.

– Do you think being part of SUP46 will help you in reaching this?

Definitely, we’ve already gotten great investor leads from the SUP46 network!

– What is SUP46 to you in one word?

Second home.

It’s My Styl are also one of the startups joining us from Sweden on our next #NordicMade trip, at which we are visiting New York for the third consecutive year. Ringing NASDAQ’s opening bell, a pitch night with local investors and media as well as community building activities for all the Nordic startups and much more is on the agenda.

If you want to know more about a startup membership at SUP46, don’t hesitate to contact our Membership Manager Lukas.


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