Six reasons to start your business in Finland

Starting a business is not easy, and finding an ideal location for it could be the first major decision an entrepreneur makes. Here are six reasons why I believe Finland makes for a great startup destination and why entrepreneurs should strongly consider it.

#1 Access to exceptional talent: For any business to be successful, you need a highly skilled team. Finland is home to some of the best technology and engineering companies like Nokia, Kone, Wartsila, Rovio and Supercell. A great education system ensures that you have access to an amazing supply of talent. And with the recent downfall of Nokia, you also get access to well trained international workforce who already have industry exposure and can lead your global expansion smoothly

#2 Well established infrastructure: Finland ranks among the least corrupt nations in the world, and you can actually register and do your business online. This is well complimented with access to good network infrastructure, R&D facilities, and a vibrant startup community. As a first time entrepreneur, this gives you time to focus on things that actually matter. Taxes are high in this country, but you will be happy to pay this premium and run a hassle free business

#3 Work-Life balance: I always assumed that entrepreneurs work 13months a year, but recently a Finnish VC gave me one advice for planning revenue projections – “Calculate your revenue targets for only 11monthsEven entrepreneurs deserve vacation to recharge their batteries, spend time with family and avoid burn out“. You may still end up doing 13months work, but this perspective helps you lead a stress free life and maybe even take a vacation. The well established social security system also helps you relax and focus your energy on execution

#4 Small market, International expansion: A small market like Finland with 5 million people is an ideal place to test a product/service, fine tune it, expand to other advanced neighbouring countries (Norway, Sweden, Denmark), before preparing for a global expansion. This approach gives you an unique advantage over other startups that are expected to deliver at the first (or only) attempt in a competitive market like US or UK

#5 Access to Investors: Investor community in Finland is very small as compared to UK or US. But then, this community is more accessible, passionate about Finland economy and want to give back to the society. Flat society structure and an open culture makes these investors accessible to everyone. Go to any startup event and you will bump into influential startup advisors like Rovio’s Mighty Eagle (Peter Vesterbacka) or Paytrail CEO (Lennu Keinanen). They are happy to advice, connect you to their network, and also help you connect with other global investors

#6 External support: There are several initiatives like NewCo Factory, Startup Sauna, Slush, Helsinki Think Company and others, that are readily available to train entrepreneurs, guide companies and provide platforms to succeed. And the advantage of being in a small place, you can attend most of these events, network, and utilize it to grow your business

So, if you are hunting for an ideal location for your business, then head over to Finland. Let me know if you have any questions or have insights from other countries. You can follow me on Twitter: @MarketingRags or Email: Raghunath.Koduvayur@outlook.com

Image source: CCODomain

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