The safety technology used by today’s automotive industry is centred around making mobility safe, sustainable, and efficient. NIRA Dynamics has been part of innovating the safety that is now taken for granted by manufacturers, end users, and third-party stakeholders across the automotive ecosystem.
While NIRA’s software was originally developed to measure tyre pressure, road friction estimation, and shortly followed by indications of loose wheels to meet safety regulations, it quickly became apparent that the onboard vehicle analytics were only part of the story. The data captured by their software could be scaled up and used to improve road perception to increase driver awareness while also monitoring road conditions, providing valuable data to help predict, plan, and follow up on utilisation and reduce environmental impact.
Going global was an inevitable step for NIRA; the first customer and vehicles that incorporated their software were destined for export, immediately creating a need for operations and tech support in global markets.
This is where their relationship with Business Sweden begins.
Scaling up without the risk
For many Swedish companies like NIRA, global expansion is inevitable or part of their business from the beginning. But setting up subsidiaries or business entities in each new market is often an initial barrier to growth, particularly when it comes to employing local staff. The choice of Business Sweden to support NIRA in this endeavour was an obvious choice says Lisa Åbom, CEO at NIRA Dynamics:
“We appreciate the insightful knowledge of the markets that we approach, and we are grateful for the support we have received.”
With a large customer base in China, NIRA needed to have feet on the ground quickly, but the commitment to setting up a business entity in a new market was a complex business decision. So, they engaged with Business Sweden who were able to provide a tailored solution.
Magnus Anseklev, NIRA’s Global Sales Director explains:
“Being local is very important as many decisions are taken close to the HQs of the OEMs so markets like Tokyo, China, the US, and parts of Europe are key.
“In China, the support has worked well. During the pandemic we wanted to shift from using small consultancy companies to directly employing staff – with the aim of building employee loyalty and have them focus purely on NIRA’s business development. It was a risky decision during the pandemic, but with the support from Business Sweden, it paid off.
“Before the pandemic, recruiting online was rare, but we wanted to act fast so with help from Business Sweden, the first wave of online recruitment was a success, and the process and decision was positive.
“We have now scaled up our team across operations and sales and they are all employed directly by Business Sweden. They also co-share Business Sweden’s office space which puts us in a good location and helps with building relationships with key customers.”
Europe is also a key market for NIRA and their need to be close to their customers required a tailored solution that fitted with their expansion strategy.
Anseklev says of their approach to their operations in France:
“Following the good experience in China, we asked Business Sweden for help in France as well. The help with recruitment and employment was tailored for the European context and local standards. We now have people that are directly employed by NIRA, but payroll and admin is handled by Business Sweden. This solution works for our needs in the market.
“The Business Sweden process is standardised, but with an understanding of the country and regional differences. The services are adapted to the market, legislation and laws, and our needs. Working with Business Sweden is super easy; just two phone calls and we are up and running.”
Strong foundation for future growth
The value and cross-functional application of NIRA’s software means they have more than one primary customer groups. Their data on road perception and maintenance is primarily of value to municipalities and those responsible for mobility planning and maintenance and fleet managers. This means they need to also understand where these customers, what the latest local standards and regulations are, and how they can collaborate with these stakeholders to maximise the impact of their data.
While the main driver for safety changes comes from OEMs, the implementation and regulation come from the public arena. NIRA needs to be close to the OEMs and the local regulatory bodies, anticipating the future trends so they can adapt their software.
This is where attending trade shows, utilising Business Sweden’s insights, and market knowledge benefits NIRA. The NIRA team have participated in delegations to key automotive trade shows in Detroit and Europe, connecting with current and potential customers and multipliers across the industry. With additional market analysis and business development in Italy, the collaboration has had a truly global impact.
“Working in Business Sweden office and alongside the team means we get relevant market information, understanding of actors in the sector, and they open doors in the public and private arena.”
About NIRA Dynamics
Established in Linköping in 2001, NIRA Dynamics is the world-leading provider of indirect tire pressure monitoring systems. They work in several areas to contribute to the next level of mobility – responsible mobility. Where people are safe, and sustainability is a given. They lead the way with innovative automotive software and technology that drives individual vehicle safety, helps municipalities plan resources, and respond to mobility infrastructure needs.