In any case we are all moving towards the future now, Krohn Traaseth says, where the recent understanding of the labor market will be shattered, and the new keywords will be flexibility and an army of freelancers.
«It is a huge cultural change for all of us. The national oil and gas industry has provided 50-60 percent of the state's income as export – the kind of role Nokia played in Finland. But just as in Finland Nokia was not followed by a single major replacement, Norway will not see a single replacement for the oil industry. We need to replace it with a lot more, at least five different fields.»
«What to do after oil?» – that has been the state's main question in the past decades. But only now, when the oil prices have fallen, have people actually set about looking for solutions.
«We are concentrating on what we're already good at. We are an energy people and we are a maritime people, the North Sea has been our primary start-up incubator. And I'm no longer talking about oil, I'm talking about fish, shipping – the sea hides immense potential. We want to step out of oil's shadow.»
One of the tasks of Innovation Norway is to distribute support to new start-ups. They have given out as much support in the first six months of this year than they did for the whole of last year.
«I think it's a very good signal because the demand for it is greatest in the west of the country where the oil industry has laid people off. I'm very glad that former oil engineers have stepped onto the road to innovation and are at least trying to put their ideas to the test in start-up enterprise.»
And so it has happened in Norway that successful start-ups are not launched by 20-year-olds but rather people with a lot more years and experience under their belt.
Norwegian companies to watch
* Gelato Group – has already launched a revolution in the printing industry. Created a global cloud that brings together print services consumers and printing houses. The company also has an office in Estonia, and its turnover for this year is estimated at 300 million Norwegian krones.
* Kahoot! A game-based educational platform that works both online and in mobile devices. The environment already has nearly three million games, the number of active users hovers around 25 million a month. The company maintains offices also in London, Austin (USA) and Sydney.
* Viva Labs – a company that has created an intelligent platform that learns a person's habits and makes appliances act accordingly, helps save on energy. You can hook up heating systems, lighting, security solutions and home electronics to the common cloud.
* Nlink – created a robot that can accurately drill holes in very complicated situations and at high altitudes. It takes 5,000 man-hours just to drill holes when constructing a major building. The company employed lasers, sensors and cameras as well as a solution that makes this part of the construction process a lot better, more accurate and faster.
* One Earth Designs – invented a parabolic antenna-like light reflector that makes it possible to convert solar energy to thermal energy with very little energy loss. It is a solar powered outside grill, the product is expected to hit the market in January.