Unique Digital Hub Secures the Future of Forestry

Ecotype in Umeå wants to help forest owners cross the digital threshold and make it easier for them to cultivate their forest in a sustainable way. Skogshubben is the digital hub that everything revolves around.

The main tool a forest owner has for care and management is the forestry plan. The plan is central and forms the basis for forestry measures such as felling, nature conservation and much more. Traditionally, it is drawn up in the field, through inspection and inventory on site, but as soon as any action has been taken, the plan needs to be rewritten. This makes it static and both time and money are required to keep it up to date.

Albin och Axel från Ecotype
Albin Nyström and Axel Ljudén, founders of Ecotype AB in Umeå. Photo Anders Nytell.

When Axel Ljudén and Albin Nyström met while studying the forester program, both saw the need for a modern complement to the usual forestry plans. One interest that united them was remote sensing and forest data in support of environmentally friendly forestry. They started Ecotype AB while still studying.

Unique Dynamic Platform

Ecotype's largest service is called Skogshubben, a digital platform with collected and updated data on all forest land throughout the country. The platform can be compared to a subscription service that offers better control and help with more long-term sustainable decisions in forestry. More efficient management that benefits not only the environment but also the economy. With its solutions, the company also wants to give ordinary people knowledge and guidance in our green nature spaces.

With Skogshubben, owners can manage their forest in a more climate-smart way. Photo Axel Ljudén.

– There are already lots of content-rich and valuable data about the Swedish forest, says Axel. But the data is scattered and often difficult to interpret. Our platform is unique in that it gathers information about all forest properties throughout the country in one place, in a user-friendly interface.

The forest hub was built in close dialogue with the future users. Through interviews and surveys with about a hundred forest owners, the company learned more about their needs. There were also many suggestions to make the platform easy to use.

– The commitment of forest owners was invaluable to us when we created the hub. We have continued close contact with them and receive daily feedback.

With the help of a built-in function for feedback in the platform, you can work with continuous improvement. The focus right now is to make the service even more user-friendly.

– Accessibility is our biggest challenge but also our most important driving force. The hub should be easy to handle for everyone, even people who are not so knowledgeable..

Digital Threshold

The environment benefits from the right efforts being made, at the right time. With a good basis for decision-making, for example, thinning can be done more selectively and better measures taken to ensure biodiversity. Opportunities to care for and use the forest in a climate-smart way increase with updated and comprehensive forestry plans.

The hub guides the user in the woods - wind traps, pest infestations or maybe chanterelles. Photo Axel Ljudén.

But the use of new, digital technology is generally low in forestry, compared to other industries. Many are unfamiliar with electronic solutions and instead do as they always have done. Even younger forest owners, who have often inherited the forest and have a lot to learn in a short time, may need help understanding and using all the information that actually exists. Axel wants to encourage everyone to try new technology.

Ecotype's unique platform Skogshubben helps people to a richer forest experience. Photo Axel Ljudén.

– It is fantastic to be involved and help forest owners across the digital threshold. We at Ecotype are passionate about raising the level of knowledge in the Swedish forest.

A Push Forward

Ecotype's offer not only attracts thousands of forest-interested and environmentally conscious users. Many investors also believe in the company's innovative solutions for sustainable forestry. In connection with the launch of Skogshubben, the company raised just over SEK 8 million in a new share issue. Investors included LRF Ventures and VEQ, organizations that both want to support innovative startups in digital technology. For Axel and his business colleague, the support was crucial.

– We got a push forward and a receipt that others also saw the benefit of our solutions. Now we could invest wholeheartedly, at full speed ahead.

Ecotype is growing and new users are added every day. The company is happy to collaborate with other actors in forest remote sensing and digitization.

– Instead of competing, we can work side by side, towards the same goal. Then the development goes faster and more people can use and care for the forest in a more sustainable way, says Axel Ljudén. We are convinced of that.

Caption: The forest hub from Ecotype is a dynamic platform that collects data from all the country's forest properties in one place. Photo by Axel Ljudén.

Click here to read more about Ecotype!


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