Case: Sarokal Test Systems

Sarokal Test Systems logoWith traditional testing equipment every product generation has required new set of testing equipment as well, costing hundreds of thousands or even millions for network equipment manufacturers. Sarokal has created a new kind of testing equipment platform to test network interfaces where software plays a major role, therefore requiring only minimal hardware update. This novel approach doesn’t just save money between product generations, but also enables multiple uses of same equipment within organization as well as totally new use cases for testing. For instance hardware testing as a part of ongoing embedded software development has often been just too expensive. There’s a hundred million dollar market for equipment like this and Sarokal’s software oriented approach makes them very cost efficient as well as allows faster than usual scale-up due these additional use cases within organization.

Sarokal Tester

Sarokal provides maximum performance and feature set for network interface testing with easily upgradeable hardware and software.

Prior to Butterfly’s investment Sarokal had finalized the first product version, acquired their first major telecommunications customer and secured multiple pilot customers.

“Most of the testing equipment manufacturers for telecommunications industry has been very traditional, hardware oriented and extremely expensive. Every new product generation also requires new set of testers. Our products do most of the stuff with software and therefore offer better functionality, lower cost and a possibility to upgrade with minimum hardware changes. There’s also an added benefit. Our system can be scaled up easily and cost efficiently, thus making more extensive hardware testing along the ongoing software development possible, which hasn’t been previously possible. Butterfly will bring in needed resources for scaling up the business.” (Harri Valasma, CEO of Sarokal Test Systems)

Butterfly invested into Sarokal because their target market is large and the early indicators of customer traction they have. Sarokal has also been able to develop a very complicated product into launch ready stage with novel software based approach. Furthermore, team has the right background for tapping into testing equipment market, both from business as well as tech point of view. Butterfly’s investment will be used to confirm the business model by acquiring additional key customers and development of next product version.

Butterfly Ventures Announces the First Investments

Butterfly Ventures announces the first investments of Northern Startup Fund into three innovative startups: FilmMe Group, NWG Tools and MyPose. The companies are all based in Oulu, Finland. With Butterfly Ventures investing in them, the companies will speed up their market-entry and accelerate their business growth.

The first investment rounds vary between approximately 100 000 and 200 000 euro, from which the Butterfly Ventures share varies from 40 000 to nearly 100 000 euro. In addition, parties have agreed on the milestone tied follow-on funding that may increase the total investment of Butterfly Ventures up to 500 000 euro per company.

We were contemplating between traditional angel investment and Butterfly at first. In the end, it was evident that Butterfly due to their experience and business knowledge would be an excellent partner – also for longer run”, said Sami Jussinniemi, CEO of NWG Tools “The benefits were clear, because Butterfly helped to develop an excellent way to protect our business and intellectual property rights already before the investment.”, he added.

The announced portfolio companies have been selected out of nearly 200 startups that were evaluated in the past six months. What these companies have in common is a sizeable market potential, appealing value proposition and business model, as well as, an excellent team. In the majority of target companies, there is also a real opportunity to protect the market position either using IPRs or the business model.

We are acting according to lean-ideology. In practice this means, for instance, that we also aim to test a certain concrete and relevant aspect of the business with the investment, such as, how the product will be spread virally.”, told Matti Kanninen, CEO of Butterfly Ventures “It is great that startups seem to highly value the help and support we can give them already during the evaluation process prior to the investment.”, he added.

In addition to the announced investments, Butterfly Ventures has several other cases under work to become investments in the near future. The majority of these companies are either in a seed or pre-seed stage. Butterfly Ventures will make first time investments in approximately ten new target companies per year.

Enquiries and additional information

Matti Kanninen, managing partner
Phone: +358 (40) 5455877

Butterfly Ventures

Butterfly Ventures is an early stage focused startup development and venture fund management company located in Oulu, Finland. Behind the company are Matti Kanninen, Antti Kosunen and Juho Risku as well as Board members Jukka Mäkinen and Jari Pasanen. Butterfly Ventures has offices in Oulu and Helsinki.


Northern Startup Fund

Northern Startup Fund is a venture capital fund managed by Butterfly Ventures that invest into early stage startups. It is the first asymmetric fund in Finland. In the case of Northern Startup Fund the asymmetry means that the public investor, which benefits also in a form of tax income, lowers the risk of a private investor by offering a possibility for returning the invested capital and profit share before the public investor. From the private investors’ point of view this improves the risk – return expectation ratio significantly. The investment capital of Northern Startup Fund will be 10 million €, half of which comes from the City of Oulu and the other half from private investors.


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