Niclas Lundin, Danir

Numbers, ball sense and confident, effective baseline play

Artists see images, musicians find chords, and poets combine words to express themselves. Niclas Lundin, CEO of Danir, sees opportunities and solutions where the rest of us only see numbers. When it comes to business economics, if anyone has perfect pitch, it’s him.

Although Niclas is more of the strong silent type, he’s a winner who knows hard work will take you where you want to go. It was that attitude that first allowed him to excel in tennis, where he competed at the elite level. Niclas was once ranked tenth in Sweden in his age group. That, in turn, earned him a scholarship to study Business Administration and Economics at Northeast Louisiana University. During his studies, it became clear that he had an aptitude for business economics and numbers.

“When you realise you’re good at something and that it comes easily to you, it becomes more fun. And if you think something is fun, you also do a much better job,” says Niclas about his interest in numbers.

Niclas has always worked with business economics, in roles ranging from controller to auditor and CFO, in various industries. In 2014, he was working at Skånemejerier when he heard from a business acquaintance that Dan Olofsson was in need of a new CFO. Niclas was not a complete stranger to Dan, as he had previously done audits for both Sigma and Teleca.

“I met Dan and Johan one afternoon, and after chatting for an hour they asked me then and there when I could start,” Niclas remembers, when asked how he came to start working at Danir. “By that point, Skånemejerier had gained new owners and had become significantly less independent than the farmer-owned, locally run company I’d started at, and that made Danir’s way of working especially appealing,” Niclas continues.

Niclas joined Danir in the middle of an exciting stage. He felt that he could help guide and shape the company’s forward momentum. Today, that journey has given Danir a clearer role, with new platforms for its sub-groups and an ever-expanding portfolio of strategic holdings and acquisitions.

In September 2021, Niclas took over as CEO of the Danir Group, which has gone from about forty holdings (when he started as CFO) to over 150.

“Good communication is crucial, and I’m normally in touch with 15-20 companies every week. And even though our entrepreneur-led companies are very self-sustaining, it’s important to be available if and when advice or support is needed,” says Niclas about his role as CEO.

Even though our entrepreneur-led companies are very self-sustaining, it’s important to be available if and when advice or support is needed

– Niclas Lundin

Niclas likes to keep his finger on the pulse of what’s happening in the group, and there is a lot going on. Danir now has 11,600 employees, with a presence in 25 countries. And these numbers continue to increase. Niclas has a positive view of the future, and he expects to see continued strong growth in both existing and new markets, with good profitability.

Long-term thinking appeals to Niclas. In his view, safe and effective baseline play, rather than constantly “rushing the net”, is what contributes to stability and steadily increasing growth. It’s a strategy well-suited to a quality-conscious numbers artist and racket sports enthusiast like himself.