Jørn Lyseggen

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Jørn Lyseggen
Jorn Lyseggen.jpg
Born (1968-12-01) December 1, 1968 (age 50)
Seoul, South Korea
Alma materIowa State University
Years active1995 - current
Known forFounder and CEO of Meltwater

Jørn Lyseggen is a Norwegian serial entrepreneur, patent inventor and the founder and CEO of Meltwater and the Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of Technology (MEST).[1][2]

Early life and education[edit]

Lyseggen was born in Korea and adopted at a young age by Norwegian parents.[3] He earned a Bachelor of Science in electrical engineering from Bergen University College and a Masters degree in electrical engineering with a focus on artificial intelligence and signal processing from Iowa State University.[4]


Early career[edit]

Lyseggen began his career as a research scientist in artificial intelligence and machine vision at the Norwegian Computing Center, but left to work in startups.[5] His first startup was an internet consultancy founded in 1995, which reportedly counted many of the leading Norwegian media houses, including Nettavisen founded by Norwegian media entrepreneur Knut Ivar Skeid, as its clients. The company was sold in 1997 to EUnet International.[1][6] In 1998, Lyseggen joined the company Mogul AS as CEO and helped to grow the company before selling it in 1999 to Optosoft.[7] He then served as CEO of Mogul Group AB and led the group to its IPO in 2000.[4]


In 2001, Lyseggen established Magenta News, an online media monitoring company analyzing online news in real time in Oslo, Norway. He bootstrapped the company, starting it with just a US$15,000 investment, and within two years it had nearly $2 million in revenue with no venture funding.[8][9] The company changed its name to Meltwater News and moved its headquarters to San Francisco in the mid 2000s.

As of 2017, Meltwater, employed over 1,600 staff in over 60 cities and 26 countries while generating revenue of over $250 million.[10][11] The company had also expanded its services beyond media monitoring, to social media analytics, and competitive intelligence for more than 21,000 clients worldwide.[1]

Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of Technology[edit]

In 2008, Lyseggen created the Meltwater Foundation and launched Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of Technology (MEST) in Accra, Ghana.[12][13] MEST is a Pan-African training program, seed fund and incubator for aspiring technology entrepreneurs.[14] Through the program, the entrepreneurs in training (EIT's) are taught how to code, as well as essential business, communication and leadership skills. The final examination includes an investment pitch in front of a panel of global entrepreneurs and investors.[2] Historically, about half the teams pitching are given seed funding from the Meltwater Foundation and incubated. MEST alumni have been enrolled in Techstars, 500 Startups, and other international accelerator programs to pursue their international expansion. MEST is funded by an annual donation of $2 million from Meltwater.[1] In 2015, MEST was named by Fast Company as one of the top 10 most innovative organizations in Africa.[15]

Outside Insight[edit]

In 2017, Lyseggen released the book Outside Insight: Navigating a World Drowning in Data, which is aimed at helping business leaders learn how to implement data-led decisions.[16][17] The book covers the role of analytics and AI in the business world as well as the importance of an outside perspective and industry trends to influence financial decisions of companies.[18]

In an interview with Forbes, Lyseggen explains what motivated him to write the book:

“External data is one of the biggest blind spots in executive decision making today. That’s because external information contains so much forward-looking information. If your competitors are hiring, and your customers are changing their behavior, those are external forces influencing your future performance, and it can be found in online ‘breadcrumbs’ and external data."


  1. ^ a b c d "Jorn Lyseggen". EuropeanCEO.com. 15 November 2010. Retrieved 20 December 2013.
  2. ^ a b Butcher, Mike (14 June 2012). "Out Of Africa- A Whole MEST of Startups Emerges In Ghana". TechCrunch. Retrieved 15 November 2016.
  3. ^ Harris, Scott Duke (29 March 2010). "Video Game Technology Extends to the Heart of Africa". Mercury News. Retrieved 15 November 2016.
  4. ^ a b "Executive Profile". Bloomberg. Retrieved 15 November 2016.
  5. ^ Hoge, Patrick (28 February 2010). "Meltwater Hits $100m As Software Flows in New Directions". San Francisco Business Times. Retrieved 15 November 2016.
  6. ^ "Bootstrapping to $200 Million: Jorn Lyseggen, CEO of Meltwater". Sramanamitra. 26 August 2015. Retrieved 15 November 2016.
  7. ^ "E-Conference Speakers". Standford. Retrieved 15 November 2016.
  8. ^ "Bootstrapping With $15k Even Though He Has Millions". Mixergy. Retrieved 15 November 2016.
  9. ^ Tweney, Dylan (21 December 2011). "Dylan's Desk: Meltwater Aims to Build A Billion dollar Business Without Venture Capital". VentureBeat. Retrieved 15 November 2016.
  10. ^ Shead, Sam (25 March 2015). "Meltwater: Could This Startup Be Norway's Secret Unicorn". Tech World. Retrieved 15 November 2016.
  11. ^ Wallbank, Paul (21 October 2015). "Building The World's Biggest Small Software Company". Smart Company. Retrieved 15 November 2016.
  12. ^ Jamaluddin, Monica (23 January 2013). "A Year In Review At Meltwater Incubator in Accra - Ghana". Silicon Africa. Retrieved 15 November 2016.
  13. ^ "Interview With Jorn Lyseggen, Founder of MEST - The Incubator That is Grooming Successful African Tech Entrepreneurs". CP Africa. Retrieved 15 November 2016.
  14. ^ Alexander, Matthew (18 January 2017). "Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of Technology is Calling All SA Tech Entrepreneurs". VentureBurn. Retrieved 4 September 2017.
  15. ^ "The World's Top 10 Most Innovative Companies of 2015 in Africa". Fast Company. 2 September 2015. Retrieved 15 November 2016.
  16. ^ Long, Mary (May 9, 2017). "25 Socially Strong Entrepreneurs Every VC Should be Following". Adweek. Retrieved May 30, 2017.
  17. ^ Toren, Adam (May 9, 2017). "8 Business Books Entrepreneurs Must Read to Dominate Their Industry". Entrepreneur. Retrieved May 30, 2017.
  18. ^ "AI en machine learning beïnvloeden besluitvorming bedrijfsleven" (in Dutch).

External links[edit]