Roger Stighäll – Global Impact from the Swedish Arctic 


You are originally from the northern part of Sweden but have lived and worked all over the world. Why did you choose to come back and make Skelleftea your home base? 

Yes, after 7 years in the U.S., I chose to move back to Sweden and place my life base in Skellefteå. Why? Well, because I have a strong belief that bravery and trust are the most crucial things in overcoming tough challenges, and who better to trust in bringing up a business, (and then also my family), than in the hoods that I grew up in. The northern way is direct and really easy to deal with, compared to many other countries and cultures. And then the quality of life in the north is really outstanding in my opinion, and you can focus on the right things in life.


At North Kingdom, you have recruited brilliant minds from all over the world who have relocated to Skellefteå. From what they have told you, what was the most unexpected benefit from moving to the Swedish Arctic? 

They get more time. In bigger places, you have to deal with more complicated daily situations which pull your energy from being productive at your profession. But by cutting out commuting, waiting in lines, etc., you also have more time for family and spare time. And clearly the quietness and nature has been key for recruiting to the north.  

They have also found that the humble, kind of quiet northerners are far more talented than they even realize themselves. 


You have worked with some of the biggest companies in the world, including Google, Disney, Netflix, Lego, EA and their top talents. Based on what is currently happening in the region, do you think epic talent like that should pick up and leave L.A (and other similar cities) for northern Sweden and its green industrial revolution?  

Not sure it will be such a movement, the north is not for everyone. I think it all comes down to individuals and where they are in life. I think exploring life in new locations and contexts is very valuable for any person’s growth. For me, moving to Florida when I was 20, gave me the confidence to start North Kingdom on my return. And for some people coming to this region, it can be a massive boost, as they will realize the talent and possibility in this somewhat distant region.   


It is almost impossible to comprehend the scale of the projects that are planned for this city and region, especially as it relates to developing game changing green technologies like fossil-free steel, batteries, and raw materials global market. With your front seat view of this transition, where do you think Skellefteå and the region will be in 10 years?  

Everything points to this area being very well positioned for what the future holds for many reasons. And it is really appealing to most people looking for a great quality of life, well, assuming you can accept living in long winters and short summers. For the region to really excel and become even more attractive, we need to continuously work with the integration of newcomers, so we get a richer variety of backgrounds and culture to foster new generations of northerners.