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H.M. Carl XVI Gustaf awarded Oddwork's Poyan Karimi on Wednesday. Photo: Jonas Ekströmer/TT
H.M. Carl XVI Gustaf awarded Oddwork's Poyan Karimi on Wednesday. Photo: Jonas Ekströmer/TT

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Oddwork's Poyan Karimi awarded Sweden's Young Pioneer of the Year 2021

On Wednesday, Oddwork's Poyan Karimi received H.M. Carl XVI Gustaf's award Young Pioneer of the Year 2021 for having successfully co-founded and developed a value-driven and prosperous company in its niche.

The Young Pioneer of the Year award (Årets Unga Pionjär), presented within IFS' Newcomer of the Year framework (Årets Nybyggare), is awarded by His Majesty the King of Sweden and granted by the foundation IFS, together with SEB and Almi. The award is Sweden's most honourable award given to young individuals with a foreign heritage and the foremost award to advance integration and raise the visibility of entrepreneurs with a foreign background. The jury commended Poyan for his work with the following motivation:

The starting point of the company's efforts is that the world would become a better place if people could do what they're really passionate about. Despite the legacy of a political refugee family's hardships and a financially vulnerable childhood, hope and commitment were instilled which contributed to his success and a company with strong values. Poyan Karimi is awarded H.M. Carl XVI Gustaf's award Young Pioneer of the Year 2021 for having built a value-driven, successful and stable company in its niche. 

A clear vision from the start 

In 2012, Poyan co-founded Oddwork as a recruitment company together with friends and co-founders Niklas Kekonius and Charles Sinclair. As Oddwork grew, employer branding was added as an additional business area.

"We founded Oddwork determined to create the kind of candidate-centric recruitment company that we were looking for as university students. We wanted to create a recruitment company where personal values and ambitions would be matched with the right company cultures", says Poyan Karimi. "One of the most important steps on that journey was to develop and successfully communicate our own company culture to the outside world. It's out of those endeavours that employer branding developed and started to grow. It has been and continues to be a fantastic journey where we're today given the opportunity to influence employers on both a global and national scale. I am especially proud that we have managed to come this far entirely without investors or external capital."

Today, Oddwork supports employers in various industries and sizes with their employer branding, recruitment and candidate attraction ambitions. The Young Pioneer of the Year award is a reminder that it is possible to succeed through hard work and dedication.

"To me, IFS' Young Pioneer of the Year award is the most exemplary award you can receive in Sweden if you have a foreign heritage. This award means a lot to me and my family – a Persian family that came to Sweden as refugees in the late '80s and has always tried to do their best to give back to Sweden ever since. I am proud of what that family has accomplished, and I am proud that Oddwork has such a significant impact on the lives of people and organisations around the world today.", says Poyan.

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Oddwork is the leading employer branding and recruitment company on a mission to take responsibility of our partners' employer brands and ability to attract, recruit and retain the right talent on today's competitive candidate market. By matching personality with company culture and strengthening employer brands, we are here to revolutionize our industry - empowering talents and organizations to be the best they can be.


Charles Sinclair

Charles Sinclair

Presskontakt Head of Employer Branding +46-704-220783
Julia Sjövall

Julia Sjövall

Presskontakt Head of Marketing Sverige +46-701419030

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Employer branding och rekrytering. Designat utifrån dagens talangmarknad.

Oddwork matchar talanger med företagskultur och hjälper företag och koncerner att utveckla sin employer branding. Vi är 30 medarbetare och finns på kontor i Göteborg, Stockholm och London.

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Kungsgatan 42
411 15 Göteborg