Why is Finland’s startup scene doing well?
Finland is a country of digital innovators. It is considered to be one of the most developed states in the field of digital services in the world. I must admit that I look with great admiration at the development of tech startups in that region. Many interesting products appear and - what is very important - new unicorns emerge.
Creating an ecosystem so beneficial for the development of startups would not have been possible were it not for Finland's emphasis on the research and development processes. It is said that Finnish consumers are early adopters of emerging technologies, which makes Finland an ideal testing ground for new solutions, ideas and technologies. In recent years, many accelerators and incubators are trying to increase the pace of innovation. Effect? Finland was recognized a long time ago as the number one country in terms of availability of latest technologies.
If I were to mention other factors contributing to the success of the Finnish startup ecosystem, one would be the fact that the government finances startups, especially in the early stages. It is a huge support in such a difficult moment of business development. I have no doubt that this boosts the development of the entire ecosystem.
I think that some may underestimate the Finnish startup market, which is why I am glad to see that conferences such as Slush are being organized. I was part of in 2017 as a volunteer where I saw with my own eyes how large and growing tech scene Finland has really come globally until today. This non-profit event is organized by a community of entrepreneurs, investors, students and top industry experts. It has grown from a 300-person assembly into one of the leading events of this kind. The core mission and philosophy of Slush remains constant: to help drive the next generation of great companies and founders. Such events are sure to strengthen the entire ecosystem and make Finland the talk of the entire world.
Finnish startups worth watching
About the company: Eduten is a spin-off from the University of Turku, ranked in the top 1% of global universities. Eduten Playground is a digital learning platform with scientifically proven impact on learning results, teacher happiness and student motivation. It is the choice of Finnish teachers; more than 210.000 students and 9.500 teachers in 34% of all schools in the country have enjoyed its benefits since 2011. It has been available globally since 2018 with users in more than 20 countries so far.
Industry: technology services
About the company: Molnix is a fast-growing start-up that aims to improve the humanitarian work around the world with their Rapid Personnel Manager (RPM). RPM is a cloud-based HR master software that enables fast deployments, cost-efficient operations and higher impact of humanitarian workers. In the future, the company is going to offer RPM to other sectors.
Industry: computer software
About the company: CollectiveCrunch is a leader in AI for the forestry industry. They collect climate, geo and process data to ‘crunch’ this information for deeper insights and predictions. CollectiveCrunch forecasts forest inventory far more accurately than conventional solutions, helping with forest sales, valuation and management.
About the company: Sensible 4 makes vehicle automation systems for all-year-round use, even for harsh Nordic winter conditions and extreme environments. Their approach, algorithms and software take self-driving where no autonomous vehicles have gone before. Their SAE level 4 solution is based on integration of artificial intelligence and sensor fusion. The application of knowledge in the real within-traffic self-driving pilots, mobile robotics and northern survival knowhow makes Sensible 4 the toughest vehicle automation system out there.
Industry: computer software
About the company: Speechly creates voice interfaces for professional tools and services using deep learning and natural language processing technologies. With this tool, people can build amazing voice-based user experiences, keep customers in their own channels, seamlessly integrate voice functionalities with their products or ensure voice-based options works well in their specific environment.
Industry: IT services
About the company: The main goal of Aibidia is to digitalize and enhance the way TP professionals work and live. By combining in-depth legal, tax and economic expertise with Artificial Intelligence, Business Intelligence and Digital Innovations, they help organizations to envision the way ahead – and provide individuals with the data and analytics to get there.
Industry: AI solutions
About the company: Reactored is a digital language learning platform where students can follow courses composed by teachers, or alternatively they can create materials that can be beneficial for their own needs. Their learning platform makes the learning process flexible and individualized. With the unique approach it also ensures that the progress takes place both inside and outside of the school environment.
It is rather difficult to compare the Finnish startup ecosystem to the largest ones in the world, such as the Silicon Valley. However, as you may have noticed based on those startups I mentioned, the Finnish ecosystem is doing well and is developing very dynamically. I keep my fingers crossed for the success of these companies and many others. Reach for the unicorns!