Arctic Roe of Scandinavia's sturgeon farm is located in the province of Småland. In the 16th Century, this province was in the border zone between the Danish and Swedish kingdoms. After Sweden's victory over the Danes, certain local inhabitants rebelled against King Gustav's strict rule.
The rebellious past has been transformed in to a friendly present. The municipality of Markaryd, where Arctic Roe has its facility, has numerous times been recognized as Sweden's most company friendly and entrepreneurial municipality.
After Sweden drove out the Danes, King Gustav 1st introduced a strict rule with consequences that were not always popular. Not all inhabitants of Småland supported King Gustav. Famous groups of rebels fought the King in the province's vast woods. This resulted in a local society largely lacking in nobility, castles and dependent labour. The self-supporting independent local farmer was a common type of inhabitant.
The province has always been quite rocky with relatively little arable land. Local people have worked hard to remove the rocks to create farmland, which is why so many stone walls are evident when driving around.
Also, a large part of the population of this province left Sweden at the end of the 19th century and beginning of the 20th century for a new, risky future in America when Scandinavia was facing a famine.
Many well-known authors come from the province. For example, Astrid Lindgren, the world-famous author of children's books, was born and raised here. Her novel character Pippi Longstocking is a young, unpredictable and superhumanly strong girl who lives on her own and helps other children and animals. Pippi is like the rebels at the time of King Gustav 1st, not obeying stupid orders but deciding herself what to do.
All these events, rebellions, hard work and the exodus to America show the determination and entrepreneurial character of the people of the province of Småland. Consequently, on several occasions the municipality of Markaryd, which is the home of Arctic Roe of Scandinavia, has been recognized as Sweden's most company-friendly and entrepreneurial municipality. As a company we feel we have the support and blessing of the municipal authorities and, for that matter, all other authorities.
It is therefore no coincidence that Arctic Roe of Scandinavia has many mighty neighbours in this province. To the east in the town of Älmhult are the roots and global research centre of IKEA. To the south, in the town of Markaryd, the municipality's main town, is the headquarters of the Nibe Group, one of the world's leading manufacturers of heat pumps and heat exchange technology.
Arctic Roe of Scandinavia is a young company but a Swedish pioneer when it comes to producing black caviar. We are proud of being part of Småland. Who knows? Give it a little time and IKEA and NIBE may consider stating that they are the neighbours of one of the world's most famous producers of black caviar.
A number of the company's shareholders have been investors or managers in Western oil, gold, agricultural or similar ventures in Russia. A lot of them share the same background: studying the Russian language in the Swedish Armed Forces during the Cold War era.
Many of them decided to listen to the classic words "Go East young man Go East" when the Berlin Wall was torn down and the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991. The current Managing Director of the company was CEO of a number of western-listed commodity companies, so-called Russian juniors, in the 1990s and the first years of the new millennium. During many business trips he became familiar with the sturgeon fish, black caviar and sturgeon farming in general. In 2015, he and a couple of friends decided to start a sturgeon farm in Sweden – and Arctic Roe of Scandinavia was founded. New shareholders have entered the company as the project has developed from permit stage to first caviar production. Currently, there are some 35 investors who jointly own the company. The biggest shareholder holds approximately 13% of the capital and votes.