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Norlantic Capital, a cross-border private markets firm, was founded by Tharald Sund Fongaard in 2023 to offer European and American high-net-worth individuals, wealth managers and family offices diversified access to the dynamic United States middle market.

With offices in New York and Oslo, Norlantic Capital has partnered with Norwegian entities The Blystad Group and Ness, Risan & Partners.

“I am excited to execute on our United States middle market-centric investing strategy that is focused on providing investors a well-diversified portfolio of investments by partnering with the leading managers in the market today,” Fongaard said in a press release.

“We are especially bullish about the enormous and highly resilient United States middle market, which includes over 200,000 capital-hungry family and Founder-led companies where private equity penetration is only about five percent.”

The Blystad Group CEO Fredrik Platou sees the timing as opportune for a diversified entry point into private equity, offering next-gen investors a conservative exposure to the best-performing asset class.

Ragnvald Risan, Managing Partner at Ness, Risan & Partners, underlined its commitment to Norlantic Capital’s inaugural fund.

“We believe this partnership holds great promise for building a scalable investment platform to give global investors access to the ever-expanding private markets opportunity set,” he said.

The collaboration leverages the extensive experience and resources of the Norwegian partners, combining domestic and international expertise in private equity investment.

Open for Business

The Shanghai Municipal People’s Government has launched the beta version of International Services Shanghai, a new online portal aimed at providing comprehensive services for expatriates in the city.

Operated by China Daily, the platform addresses the needs of foreigners seeking information related to work, travel or study in Shanghai. In response to calls to facilitate foreign engagement made during the Central Economic Work Conference, the portal integrates with the city’s e-governance platform, offering quick online access.

The portal is supported by various online and offline activities including sessions explaining policy, business consultations and cultural experiences. It also aims to enhance engagement with the expatriate community.

Beta testers, including Michael Wong from EY and international student Montealegre Carvajal Edwin Roberto, praised the portal for providing valuable insights into setting up businesses in Shanghai.

The website will be made available in eight other languages, demonstrating the city’s commitment to creating a business environment conducive to international investment.

“We will continue to create a first-class business environment that is market-oriented, law-based and internationalized, provide accurate, convenient and innovative high-quality services, and work hand in hand with everybody to create an open and prosperous future,” Shanghai Mayor Gong Zheng said during the Invest in China Year summit in November last year.

The Stack Up of Mobile Banking by Country

A Statista Consumer Insights survey conducted between April 2022 and March 2023 across 56 countries provides insights into global banking preferences. The survey focused on the methods individuals use for their banking transactions. Below are the top 11 countries the survey found conduct banking transactions on the move with smartphones and tablets.

Expansion Capital

Despite economic challenges, Germany’s business sector thrived in 2023, according to Germany Trade & Invest. While the country’s gross domestic product stagnated, major international companies invested significantly.

Taiwanese chipmaker TSMC selected Dresden for a US$10.9 billion semiconductor facility, while Eli Lilly and Company announced a US$2.5 billion expansion in Alzey. Germany’s appeal for foreign direct investment (FDI) remained strong, with big-ticket expansions forecasting attractive economic conditions.

Germany ranked fourth globally and number one in Europe in Kearney’s FDI Confidence Index. EY’s survey also found 62 percent of executives consider the country the most attractive for foreign investments in Europe.

CEO Robert Hermann attributes this success to Germany’s appeal for business, even amid international and domestic turmoil.

“It needs to be remembered that Germany has launched an unprecedented transition to clean energy. That involves some short-term pain, but major companies, which think in the long-term, believe that there’ll be fair more gain in having reliable supplies of environmentally friendly energy for the future. That’s why they’re still keen on doing business here,” he said in a statement.

Despite the challenging year, the majority of economic forecast groups predict Germany’s return to positive growth in 2024.

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