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Business Development & Finance in Finland

Primary Source for this page: Suomi.fi

Introduction to SME's and Financing
This page focuses on public authorities, agencies and organizations which assist in development and financing of Finnish enterprises, in particular small and medium-sized enterprises (SME's).

Small and medium-sized enterprises (SME's)
A small and medium-sized enterprise is a firm with less than 250 employees and either an annual turnover of maximum €50 million or a balance sheet total of maximum €43 million. Businesses larger than this may not own more than 25% of the capital of an SME.
Source: Statistics Finland

A small business is defined as a firm with less than 50 employees and either an annual turnover of maximum €10 million or a balance sheet total of maximum €10 million. Businesses larger than this may not own more than 25% of the capital of a small business.
Source: Statistics Finland

Public financing
The principal objects of public financing are investments by SME's, as well as various development, research and product development projects. Funding may take the form of a subsidy, loan or guarantee. The enterprise’s equity may be strengthened by means of capital investment, loans and guarantees.

Suomi.fi - Financing a New Business

Suomi.fi provides information about financing a business and business subsidies. The section includes Financial planning, Loans and guarantees, Venture capital, and Aid and subsidies
Business Startup Financing: Suomi.fi > Financing a business and business subsidies
Additional Financing information: Search Suomi.fi for 'funding' and 'financing'

Suomi.fi - Business Development Advice

Suomi.fi provides advice on development and internationalisation of your business in Finland.

The Expanding the business operations section includes information on building your business operations by expanding into new sectors, acquiring new business, developing marketing and sales, and by internationalisation.

The Developing the business section includes information on management, marketing and sales, development of competence, and quality management.

The Development of competence section looks at competence of employees and management, and examines development through personnel training, adult education, and business competency and development.

The Product and service design section provides advice on innovation activities, ideas and inventions, productisation, and commercialisation.

The Growth and internationalisation section is broken down into: Expanding the business operations, Planning for internationalisation, and International operations.

The Being an employer section includes information on: Hiring an employee, Employer's responsibilities and obligations, Changes in employment, Assessing the need for and obtaining personnel, Management and managerial work, Working hour arrangements and flexibility, and Employees from abroad.

Business Development Advice: Suomi.fi

ELY Centres - Advisory, Financing & Development Services

The Centre for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment ELY Centres support the establishment, growth and development of small and medium-sized enterprises by offering advisory, education and development services, and financing. Services offered by the ELY Centres cover the internationalisation of businesses, the improvement of business efficiency and management skills, the development of technology and innovations, further education for personnel and training for new employees. In addition, ELY Centres may also participate in the funding of development projects. Financial assistance is discretionary, the amount varying depending on the nature of the project.

Centre for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment: www.ely-keskus.fi/en  in English, Finnish, Russian, Swedish

ELY Links to National Service Providers:

Finnvera: Financial services for SME's

Finnvera is a specialised financing company owned by the State of Finland. It provides risk financing to enterprises with a sound business idea and preconditions for profitability when a company has insufficient collateral to raise funds for investments and development projects.

All sizes of enterprises and all business sectors, with the exception of basic agriculture, are eligible for Finnvera financial services. Finnvera's product portfolio covers all development stages of an enterprise, ranging from loans and guarantees for start-up and micro-enterprises to export credit guarantees for large Finnish exporters and their financiers.

Finnerva's web site is rather vast! Apart from information about its products, it includes useful sections about financing and development of enterprises in Finland, including:

Visit: www.finnerva.fi > In English

Pay Subsidy for Finnish Employers

In certain circumstances the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment can grant a subsidy for salary costs to an employer recruiting an unemployed jobseeker. The objective of work arranged through a pay subsidy is to improve the vocational skills, competence and labour market position of the unemployed jobseeker and to promote the access of those having been unemployed for long periods to the open labour market.

The pay subsidy is mainly used to employ persons who are long-term unemployed, disabled, young people aged less than 25 and jobless persons threatened by long-term unemployment or exclusion from the labour market. This subsidy can be received by State agencies and institutions, municipalities, companies and other private sector employers, such as associations, foundations and households.

Applying for a pay subsidy

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