Ernst Malmsten

Updated at: Feb. 13, 2011, 2:17 p.m.

Ernst Malmsten is a Swedish national, born in 1970. He passed his Swedish higher school examination in 1990. The year before, he spent at Dover College, an independent boarding-school in Kent, England. Here he passed the examination for the G.C.E. (English, history and political science). As a devoted chessplayer he also became the captain of the chessteam at Dover College. University studies in history and political science followed in Lund, Sweden (1990-1992).

During the years of study, he arranged in Lund, several discussions and meetings in the cultural and political fields. Among these were discussions with the prime minister and other ministers and two successful Nordic poetry festivals sponsored by the Nordic governments. During the years 1991-1994 he was also a frequent writer as a literature critic at one of the leading morning papers in Sweden.

In 1993 he arranged, together with Kajsa Leander, the Nordic Poetry Festival in New York City. This event was a joint Nordic project with economic support from the Nordic governments and several cultural institutions both in the nordic countries and in the USA. To plan and carry out the project he, together with Kajsa Leander, established an office for half a year at the consulate-general of Finland. The event was the largest-ever Nordic poetry festival to be held in the United States. A distinction was conferred upon the arrangers in the form of a medal from the United Nations. The festival made quite an impact in the United States, and an enthusiastic audience led to extensive media coverage.

In 1994, he, together with Kajsa Leander, founded the publishing company, LeanderMalmsten, recognised as a young and bold publishing house with exciting publications and an elegant graphic design. The publishing house stressed marketing and introduced new ways to draw attention to a new book. Several eye-catching literary events were arranged. Book subjects included poetry, novels, and books of cultural history.

In 1997, he founded, together with Kajsa Leander, the Internet virtual bookstore Through a well-developed design and focused PR and marketing, has become a strong and well established brand in Sweden.

Kooperativa Förbundet, the Swedish co-operative, one of the biggest retail-chains in Sweden, acquired in 1999.

For those who do not know, Ernst Malmsten was the director and founder of and whose actions ran the company onto the rocks — owing their 400 plus staff wages and failing to pay their contractors.

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