NORD.investment’s David Harboe is a member of Forbes Europe’s 30 Under 30 List for finance 2020. He told ARYZE how he built NORD, the tech company’s next steps, and his thoughts on being a successful entrepreneur under thirty.
David Harboe may be only twenty-nine, but he is a seasoned tech entrepreneur. Since the age of fifteen, he has worked with startups and software, leading his friends to call him “a tech nerd with business skills.” Harboe has co-founded two companies – MyModo and NORD.investments, the latter of which has gotten him into Forbes Europe’s 30 Under 30 list for finance.
NORD.investments is using modern technology to improve upon the existing investment infrastructures. Investing with NORD means investing in over four-thousand companies based all around the world. Those investment plans are comprised of ETFs (Exchange-Traded Funds), and they cost significantly less than the industry average. In fact, by primarily using automation instead of experts, NORD is able to offer their services at half the price of their competitors. To highlight this remarkable fact, Harboe quotes Albert Einstein:
Compound interest is the 8th wonder of the world as Einstein said. 1% more in fees means millions in the long term.
Harboe decided to start NORD because he believed there was no existing way to invest ‘properly’, without the high risks and expenses of traditional investment mechanisms. Says Harboe:
Banks are too expensive and old, and buying single stocks yourself is too risky.
Although they are not an impact investment firm, NORD is embedding responsible investment opportunities into their offerings. According to Harboe, all of their new pension portfolios are sustainable – emitting 50% less oil, gas and coal, 32% less CO2 and using half as much water as standard offerings – and their clients are increasingly choosing to invest responsibly. As he told Forbes:
We only invest in the companies that hold a certain standard on Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) while still keeping the transparent cost as low as possible.
Despite their growing success, building NORD.investment has not come without its challenges. The biggest of those trials came in 2018, when the company’s partner bank was overtaken by the government, forcing them to transfer all of their customers to their new partner, Saxo Bank. Long hours and sleepless nights aside, though, Harboe argues that this switch ultimately proved to be worthwhile for the company.
Equipped with this strong partnership and an extremely competitive offering, NORD is poised to scale their services internationally for the first time, starting with Norway in 2020. In the future, Harboe aims for NORD to become the default, ‘natural’ choice for people choosing to invest.
When asked whether being under thirty years old is a help or a hindrance to achieving his professional goals, Harboe argues that age is irrelevant to success:
I don’t think age matters. Experience does. I have been starting companies and building software solutions for over 10 years, and without that previous experience, NORD wouldn’t exist.
To learn more about David Harboe and NORD.investments, please connect with him on LinkedIn and go to their website. For more profiles of Forbes Europe’s 30 under 30 for finance members, please visit ARYZE’s blog and website.