Meet Sebastian: CEO at Cooler Future
When you think of Cooler Future, you most likely don’t always think about the people behind the company. You should though! We got you and your finances covered by an amazing team driving and forcing the company to thrive, starting with our CEO: Sebastian Wikström.
Sebastian brings great financial expertise to Cooler Future and was therefore a valuable addition to our team. After working in finance for 20 years (be it traditional finance or the start-up environment), he decided that Cooler Future is his place to be. Interestingly, Sebastian was not part of Cooler Future from the beginning on.
When asking him how he became CEO of the company, he funnily replies: “Let me tell you: I was fooled into this!”. If you want to find out how Sebastian came to a change of heart and joined a company that is about changing the world, keep on reading, it’s gotta be interesting. And while doing so, you may even learn “how to trick someone into being CEO” 😉.
Based in Helsinki, Sebastian has worked in a lot of different environments and has gained very diverse experience over the past 20 years. He started his professional career working in traditional finance such as asset management and trading listed equity, which is why he was able to build some in depth-knowledge in the financial environment.
He soon noticed though that he is also driven by the dynamics of the start-up environment and has looked into this a bit more. He has worked both as an investor and an entrepreneur himself, engaging in financing solutions and crowdfunding. He even became self-employed by offering consulting services that focus on financing environmental services! And here we get to the heart of the matter: Sebastian’s switch to the - let’s say - more impactful side of finance!
When talking to him, it becomes immediately clear that the impact side of everything has always been a huge interest of his as he considers himself to be a nature lover and recognised the importance of protecting the environment very early on. In traditional finance however, this has always been an aspect he was missing. And here things fall into place and the switch to an impact investing startup that is on the mission to change the world, was the perfect career shift for Sebastian.
With Cooler Future, he remarks that he has found his dream job (which of course makes all of us very happy to hear!) because it marks the ideal intersection between finance and impact, or in other words: saving the world while working with money! And because being CEO of a growing company is not enough work, Sebastian is currently studying environmental sciences on the side to gain some more specific and scientific knowledge in that matter. Impressive, right?
Well, but how did Sebastian actually end up at Cooler Future? Close to one year ago, he saw a (business development) job announcement by Cooler Future on LinkedIn and decided to apply because he found the product very interesting (as it is!). But instead of joining as a consultative force, our founders Matti Rönkkö and Moaffak Ahmed decided that Sebastian would make a great CEO due to his financial and managerial experience and skills. And while sitting on a Helsinki terrace, Sebastian was made the offer. As you can tell, he accepted it because he was excited about the idea of the business and wanted to spread the message of impact investing.
Of course, being a CEO certainly sounds great, but let’s get to the deed. What do you actually do all day? As for Sebastian, the largest part of his time is allocated to company financing. With this, he got a huge responsibility for the future of the company. Next to this, Sebastian engages a lot in strategic work and management matters and owns responsibility for our impact team (those who select the funds based on their performance). Last but not least, he makes use of his financial knowledge by engaging in the development of the whole financial products and allocates his resources and expertise to our own fund as well as new potential funds. Sebastian sees two major strengths in Cooler Future: the team and the unique impact analysis. In his words:
“We have a lot of potential to grow due to brilliant people being part of our team as well as our high quality and transparent impact approach. This approach can be applied to a whole bunch of future products, providing us with so many opportunities. This is - so to say - our “vegan beef”. “ - Sebastian
In other words, Sebastian believes one of Cooler Future’s main strengths is the technology and application we developed, meaning the unique way we created to make investing, and especially impact investing easy and approachable. With this, impact can be communicated and be visualised in a great way.
Born and raised in Finland, Sebastian has always been at heart with Finnish nature and a true animal admirer. He likes to spend time outside, sailing or hiking with a backpack and tent. To balance his professional life, Sebastian considers bird watching as his kind of mediation! For him, there is nothing more calming than watching a bird through a telescope and it’s the best way to switch off. He even gets up at 4am to watch the sea eagles on the finnish coast! It seems to be true what you say: CEOs get up early!
Next to this, he loves spending time with his family and raising two daughters. In his opinion, one of the most important things everyone can do to combat climate change is to make efforts to raise the next generation to be climate-conscious, which is a very important aspect in Sebastian’s family life. Not only education-wise but also consumption-wise, Sebastian tries to establish a sustainable lifestyle as much as he can: consuming little, not taking many flights, using green electricity, but also he admits: You can always do better! His guilty pleasure is cheese, the true enemy of veganism.
“Finance is part of the origin as well as the solution to climate change and we at Cooler Future can only do our best to contribute positively. The negative impact of money is real and everyone can spend 10 minutes on it to understand the concept behind it. Only with this effort, you know what it means and can decide whether you want to do something about it!”
We hope that with this article, you were able to get to know our CEO a bit better and experience Cooler Future to be a bit more approachable. In the end, we are all human and can only do our best to combat climate change. Start today and download our app!