Klarna-grundaren ryter till mot medier i läckt mejl: “Tro inte på allt du läser i pressen”.

Klarna-grundaren ryter till mot medier i läckt mejl: “Tro inte på allt du läser i pressen”.

Sebastian Siemiatkowski, vd och medgrundare av Klarna. Foto: Ann Jonasson.

Jonas de Lange


Sebastian Siemiatkowski riktar hård kritik mot journalister efter den senaste rapporteringen.

På onsdagen publicerade Breakit en artikel om att Klarna anlitat den hårt kritiserade Karolinska-toppen Andreas Ringman Uggla.

Klarnas vd och medgrundare Sebastian Siemiatkowski gick kort efter att Breakits artikel publicerats ut i ett internt mejl till alla på bolagets Sverige-kontor och försvarade rekryteringen. Samtidigt passar han på att rikta svidande kritik mot journalister i allmänhet.

I mejlet skriver Klarna-vd:n om sina erfarenheter från när Klarna granskades av SvD 2014:

"...samtidigt lärde jag mig mycket om media. Hur journalister undviker logik, rationell information och data och till och med utelämnar viktiga aspekter för att skapa en mer sensationell story."

Breakit har genom flera källor fått tag på mejlet och väljer att nedan publicera det i sin helhet.

Här skriver Breakits medgrundare Stefan Lundell om Klarna-toppens mejl.

Här är det läcka mejlet:

Let me tell you a story

Our family used to have an amazing friend called Maggie. She was an amazing human being, with massive amounts of integrity, smart and at the very bottom of her heart good and fair. I secretly called her Yoda. She was a judge and had a long track record of being a great judge, a great leader and manager appreciated for her fair judgement and great mentorship. She was also battling cancer for many years. Her love in her life and her best friend was Gabby and they really battled the cancer together.

Some years ago, due to her great track record, she was appointed as one of 3 to run the Swedish National Audit office. The 3 of them recognised and realised there was a need for change at the SWNA due to lack of quality and efficiency. She with her colleagues started to drive change, however this was not appreciated by everyone affected by the change. People in the organisation started leaking things to the press to discredit the people behind the change. They managed to find some issues that were serious enough to force 2 of the managers to resign, through massive media pressure. They also heavily attacked Maggie without finding a single specific item to criticise her for.

In the last year of her life Maggie while fighting cancer, was the only remaining manager of the Swedish National Audit office. Any other person would at that time have taken a sick leave, but she remained on her post. She was under heavy scrutiny by media, that was all set on trying to expose any weakness or misjudgement by her, to drive more readership. She was asked to testify in front of the committee on the constitution. Her reputation was severely damaged as everyone was reading what they believed was an unbiased and fair assessment of her and the others work at the Swedish National Audit office. Finally she finished her term and left the job.

She then at the very end of her life applied for the job of lagman in forvaltningsratten, a very prestigious and highly regarded position in Sweden. Because of all the negative reporting, that government agency made a very deep scrutiny of her time at Swedish National Audit office. They came back with a letter informing her that she had been appointed to the role, and that they had deeply investigated all claims all media reporting, by a number of interviews with colleagues, agencies etc and realised she had done an amazing job, there was nothing to criticise her off on the opposite she should be credited. She died hours after reading that letter.

In 2014 Klarna was under heavy scrutiny by SvD for our business practices. I have always been a believer in the importance of free press and their crucial role in society of scrutinising politicians, government and companies. At the same time it taught me a lot about the press, how journalists would avoid logic, rational information, metrics and even omit important aspects, in order to create a more sensational story. I also realised that willingness to drive change and to improve, is necessary but not always popular, making an impact in the world does mean coming at odds with some people. Once journalists start hunting for the next "discovery" in their sensational story, they will no longer look for an unbiased view, but be more hungry to report information and quotes from people that are at odds with the change you are driving.

Since then I have made it a habit to contact people that get severely attacked in the press. Not all of them of course. Recently there was a surgeon in Karolinska who had counterfeited his CV and done procedures that killed his patients. It was pretty clear there was no ambiguity. However in other cases there is.

Swedish healthcare is declining in quality, while increasing in cost, there is need for a change, for a new approach. There is no silver bullet to such a challenge. It needs to start with testing and applying new methods, new ways of organising and working together. Driving such change in an environment where you are also responsible for peoples lives is even more challenging and complex, however that does not mean it is not necessary or impossible. Post Andreas leaving his role at Karolinska, at a day where the press was claiming his responsibility for the death of some patients, on what was even in the article fairly clearly dubious reasons, I contacted him to offer my support. I also wanted to find out for myself and make an assessment of what had really happened in this case. We learnt it in school when we were kids, it was called kallkritik.

I found a person with massive integrity, smart and balanced.  A person who was willing to stand up for the changes and needs that healthcare in Sweden has. A person who only left Karolinska, when the result of the media reporting was death threats to his own family. I asked other people at Klarna to meet him, and they all came back as positive as I. I then said, lets give him an consultant assignment at Klarna and get to know him better. The world needs more people that can drive positive change, that have the courage and integrity to stand up for their ideas and the ability and energy to try to make them a reality.

This is why Andreas is joining us as a consultant. Dont believe in everything you read in the press.

Sebastian with management team

Vet du mer om utvecklingen inne på Klarna? Skicka gärna tips till jonas@breakit.se min PGP-krypteringsnyckel hittar du här. Fingeravtryck: 2283 8673 3F87 02D4 4C5C  B0A1 D4C9 55EC 1B7B E677

Läs fler artiklar