Andre Agassi

  • Former World No. 1 in Tennis
  • Inducted into the Tennis Hall of Fame in 2011
  • The only male player ever to win all four Grand Slam titles and an Olympic gold medal

After turning pro at the age of 16, tennis prodigy Andre Agassi rose to international fame, earning 60 men’s singles titles, including eight Grand Slam singles championships, over a 20-year career. A former World No. 1 player, Agassi is the only male player ever to win all four Grand Slam titles and an Olympic gold medal. He was also a member of three winning Davis Cup teams (1990, 1992 and 1995). On July 9, 2011, Andre was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame for the Class of 2011.

After retiring in 2006, Andre Agassi has increased his focus on his Foundation and on promoting education reform. He is also building a lifestyle business through endorsement relationships, joint venture investments and real estate development. In November 2009, he released his autobiography Open, which reached #1 on the New York Times bestseller list and continues to hit record sales internationally.

Since the inception of the Andre Agassi Foundation for Education in 1994, $185 million dollars has been raised to benefit the mission of the Foundation including $118 million from the Grand Slam for Children fundraising event. The Grand Slam for Children served as the Foundation’s primary fundraising vehicle and brought together international stars to raise awareness and money.

At Nordic Business Forum SWEDEN, Andre shares his reflections on success and finding your purpose.


Chad Hurley

  • Co­-Founder and former CEO of YouTube
  • Hurley and Steve Chen sold YouTube for $1.65 billion to Google

In an era when “game­changer,” “disrupter,” and “new standard,” are tossed around regularly, there are only a small handful of brands and technologies that serve as the indisputable, iconic personifications of those monikers. YouTube is one such entity. Serving as a website, a brand, and a verb, YouTube is the world’s largest and most popular video sharing site and the third most visited site globally. At the genesis and development of this phenomenon is its co-­founder and former CEO, Chad Hurley. Equal parts businessman and Silicon Valley maven, Chad’s transition from working at PayPal to founding and growing YouTube has truly become the stuff of legend in business, technology, social and educational circles around the world. In October of 2007, Chad and his partner sold YouTube to Google, Inc. for $1.6 Billion and still serves as the company’s advisor.

Currently, it is estimated that YouTube attracts over 1 billion unique users watching over 6 billion hours of video each month with 80% of its traffic coming from outside the U.S. Additionally, 100 hours of new video is uploaded every minute — a rate that shows more content being uploaded in less than a month than the combined three U.S. networks created in its first 60 years.

At Nordic Business Forum SWEDEN, Chad discusses the rise of YouTube and managing its meteoric growth. He shares the lessons learned from the unique experiences of creating a “game­changer,” “status quo disrupter,” and “new standard” in technology and how content is consumed and shared in the modern era. He also explains what’s next in the ever­evolving landscape of emerging technology, the shifting paradigm of media production and distribution and how YouTube continues to evolve in order to stay on top.

Chip Conley

  • Global Head of Hospitality at Airbnb
  • Former Founder & CEO of Joie de Vivre
  • Before AirBnB created and managed 50 boutique hotels

No one has led the development, creation, and management of more boutique hotels than Chip Conley, founder and former CEO of Joie de Vivre (JDV). At age 26, Chip’s mission was to “create joy” by building a company that USA Today called “the most delightfully schizophrenic collection of hotels in America.” During his nearly 24 years as CEO, JDV grew to become the second largest boutique hotel company in America.

In 2013, he joined Airbnb as Head of Global Hospitality, where he’s sharing his proven methods with hosts in nearly 200 countries.

Honored with the 2012 Pioneer Award – hospitality’s highest accolade – The San Francisco Business Times named Chip the “Most Innovative CEO” – and JDV the “2nd Best Place to Work in the entire Bay Area.”

At Nordic Business Forum SWEDEN, Chip shares his unique prescription for success and discusses how the disruptive companies, like AirBnB, are changing the way we do business and interact with the new consumer.


Sheila Heen

  • Lecturer on Law at Harvard Law School
  • Best­ Selling Author

Sheila is a Founder of Triad Consulting Group and has been on the Harvard Law School faculty since 1995. Sheila’s corporate clients include MetLife, Pixar, Tatweer of Dubai, BAE Systems, Unilever, John Deere, the U.S. Federal Reserve Bank, Cisco, Novartis, and numerous family businesses. She often works with executive teams, helping them to work through conflict, repair working relationships, and make sound decisions together.

Sheila has spent more than twenty years with the Harvard Negotiation Project, developing negotiation theory and practice. She specializes in particularly difficult negotiations – where emotions run high and relationships become strained. Sheila is co­author of two New York Times bestsellers, Difficult Conversations: How to Discuss What Matters Most, and the recently released Thanks for the Feedback: The Science and Art of Receiving Feedback Well (Even When It’s Off Base, Unfair, Poorly Delivered, and Frankly, You’re Not in the Mood).

She has spoken at Apple, Google, Microsoft, and the Global Leadership Summit.

At Nordic Business Forum SWEDEN, Sheila talks about the science and art of giving & receiving feedback, and negotiation.


Ida Backlund

  • Founder of Rapunzel of Sweden
  • Entrepreneur & investor

Aged only 22 years old, Ida Backlund went to the bank with a vision. A vision of giving all women the possibility of having long, thick hair. The bank was not convinced and turned her away. Yet with a strong belief in herself and her idea, Ida went ahead anyway by using finances of her own. Rapunzel of Sweden was created. Today, less than 10 years later, the company has developed into one of the Nordics’ most successful companies in its branch with customers all over the world. Ida Backlund has been awarded multiple prizes and awards over the years in Sweden, the Nordics and Europe for her work as an entrepreneur and leader as well as her CSR work.

Rapunzel of Sweden is one of the Nordics’ leading hair extensions companies operating mainly on the internet with customers in more than 60 different countries. The multi­award winning company uses its own brand, Rapunzel® and delivers hair extensions, wigs and hair care products to hundreds of thousands of people all over the world. Apart from the large online business with its head office in the city of Umeå (Northern Sweden) Rapunzel of Sweden has also established the Rapunzel® Store Concept, and the foundation Rapunzel vs Cancer.

At Nordic Business Forum SWEDEN, Ida talks about how her company Rapunzel of Sweden has managed to expand to over 60 countries

Linda Liukas

  • Founder of Rails Girls
  • Author of “Hello Ruby”

Linda is a Codecademy alumni and the founder of Rails Girls, a global phenomenon teaching the basics of programming for young women all over the world.

Linda is the author of “Hello Ruby”, a children’s book that teaches programming fundamentals through stories and kid-friendly activities. The book’s Kickstarter campaign – meant to fund additional work on the project – met its original goal of $10,000 in just three and a half hours, and Liukas has gone on to raise well over $250,000. Altogether the project raised over $380,000.  The book’s publishing rights have been sold to 14 countries.

Linda is also co-founder at, a website that helps women understand and become more involved in technology and creating new ideas. She is educated at the Turku School of Economics and Aalto University’s School of Arts, Design and Architecture. Linda is a central figure in the world of programming and has worked on edutech already before it was called that.

Linda’s TED talk has been viewed over million times and she was rewarded with the award 30 under 30 in Northern Europe by Nordic Business Report in 2014.

At Nordic Business Forum SWEDEN, Linda talks about how to use creativity as a roadmap for the future.