The use of maps and geographic information systems has spread like wildfire to a variety of industries, on mobile phones and on everyone’s computer.
Mikkel Wendelboe Toft, the now 40-year-old president of the trade association Geoforum Denmark, serves as a true advocate for this new approach to how geospatial solutions is the core to understanding our ever-changing world.
Toft is also an important member of Hexagon Geospatial’s EMEA team. Toft is a visionary who continually devises strategies for influencing key trends and growth in the geospatial arena.
For the past three years, Toft has helped Geoforum adapt to a world that is rapidly changing. For example, all Danish geodata was made freely available to the public. In addition, he has helped the spatial industry advance its solutions to multiple and new vertical sectors, which has been a business driver for the many member companies in Geoforum.
Although Toft grew up in an entrepreneurial family where his father established a large carpentry company, he dreamed of being a geographer. After a few years as a freelancer in the film industry and serving as a Lieutenant in the Danish Civil Defense, which helped to mature him as a leader, he enrolled at Copenhagen University and graduated as MSc in Geography.
During his studies, his desire for adventure went hand-in-hand with his entrepreneurial gene. At this time, he launched a consultancy, where he offered GIS services to companies and organizations. After that, he became a junior consultant at Atkins Denmark, followed by a project manager at Danish National Rails, after which he stayed several years at the Danish engineering company Niras, where he a part of the time was expatriated in Malaysia. Today, Toft is the Regional Partner Manager responsible for the Nordic and Baltic countries.
While managing his growing and busy career, in 2011, he was elected President of Geoforum, a role in which he helped to create – allowing the organization to bridge the gap between the spatial industry and the outside world.
During his downtime, Toft often goes on the hunting trips to Denmark, Norway and Poland. He is also co-owner of a mid-size sailboat and has, in different types of boats, crossed everything from oceans to the Sound.
Toft is married to Hanne, who is also a geographer. The couple has two boys aged 7 and 9 years, and live in Copenhagen.