Stories 2023.04.03

Walk the talk on gender equality

Almost three years ago, as the company NOD was founded, Therese Hillman took on the role as CEO. With the support of the private equity firm Altor, Therese wanted to establish a network of ambitious entrepreneurs and Scandinavian design brands. The network would benefit the brands by connecting them, creating valuable synergies and paths to realise each brand’s unique expansion journey. At a time where companies are scrutinized and expected to lead on more than financial success, NOD stands out as one that truly wants to walk the talk when it comes to gender equality.


“It was crucial to me that we build a Network that is inclusive and mirror the world we operate in, this way we don’t miss out on competence and business opportunities.”

Therese Hillman, CEO of NOD


Little time has passed and NOD is already a proud home to some of Scandinavia’s most iconic design brands as Byarums Bruk, Grythyttan Stålmöbler and String Furniture. They have also invested in more recently founded design gems like – Photowall, Norling and Wall of Art, to name a few.


50 / 50 split

When you look at NOD’s brands, you will find a 50 / 50 split between women and men in CEO positions. This is part of a very conscious strategy, for example, when leading positions are vacant, NOD supports with recommendations to assist the companies with selecting candidates from a diverse pool of candidates so they can achieve a more balanced board or c-suite. Another part of the strategy is to be very diligent when looking at who to invest in.

While the decision always lies in finding strong brands where NOD can support the company to expand into new markets or better their offer – regardless of the founding teams’ gender – representation can be ensured by taking time to seek out a pool of brands founded by both women and men before making a decision. So far this has worked out well, NOD is home to fantastic brands, both young and mature, with impressive potential ahead. Therese and the team are proud that the gender balance among the companies’ founders also holds a 50 / 50 split.


“Representation matters and we want to build a business that sustains and thrive over time. I hope this sends a message to entrepreneurs that we are serious about representation and that diversity is a force for success that we refuse to miss out on.”

Susanna Campbell, Chairman of the board NOD


Together is the key

“Our chairman of the board, Susanna Campbell, is a force of competence and experience, she has been an important key to realizing NOD’s strategy. As everyone else, we measure and track how we do on gender equality, we currently have 43% women on the board. When we invest in new design brands, we actively seek out both female and male entrepreneurs, we don’t want to miss out on a good partnership – it is as simple as that,” says Therese.

More stories