15 February, 2021

The Swede smell of success

Erik Bergman, Great.com founder, speaks about his beginnings with Catena Media, the bright future for the Swedish affiliate market, and the struggles involved with building a social media presence.

Can you tell us about your journey with Catena?
The journey with Catena happened more or less by accident. It was me and my childhood friend, Emil Thidell, and we failed at everything else we tried. Then we started building bingo affiliate sites, which also completely failed. In the first years we actually gave up on that and started doing a bunch of other things, then came back to bingo affiliation after looking into the accounts and seeing $1,000 in there. That was around 2008 I think, and we kept building from there. It was always just a fun play around. We were building websites about bingo, but also mortgages, business cards fashion, everything we could come up with for about four years until 2012, when we partnered up with Optimizer Invest and decided to go full in on casino.
And that's kind of the inception of what became Catena Media, even though it started long before then. It was a chaotic journey, which almost ended in 2013 because we ran out of money, but we managed to turn it around luckily, and the rest is history. It mostly feels surreal. It's all just a blur in a sense but I had a lot of fun. We were a lot of wonderful people and we had perfect timing.

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