A hand wearing a black ring
 The Oura Ring gets a field trial in the US for early COVID-19 detection. Image: Oura

DAILY BRIEF: Smart rings for COVID-19 detection, sustainability, research, industry and e-commerce

All the daily Finnish business news that works: Gasum, Nokia, Valio, Sarlin, Vilkas, Oura and the University of Oulu make headlines.

Rasmus Hetemäki


Gasum supplies tankers with renewable maritime fuel, University of Oulu’s professor Jarkko Saarinen is awarded, Nokia digitalises a Belgian port, Valio is deemed Finland’s most sustainable brand, Sarlin closes a big deal in China, Oura collaborates on early detection of COVID-19, and Vilkas helps struggling business move online. Click on the headlines for more in-depth information about each piece of news.

Gasum to supply renewable maritime fuel to Preem

Finnish company Gasum has agreed to supply a new fuel blend consisting of liquefied natural gas (LNG) and 10 per cent renewable liquefied biogas (LBG) for the tankers of Preem, the largest fuel company in Sweden. This is Gasum’s first deal in the maritime sector for regular deliveries of a blend containing renewable fuel. LGB reduces greenhouse gas emissions by up to 85 per cent compared to conventional fuel, according to Gasum. Image: Thun

Professor Jarkko Saarinen wins AAG’s John Rooney Award

Professor Jarkko Saarinen from the University of Oulu has been awarded the John Rooney Award by the American Association of Geographers (AAG), the largest international scientific organisation in the field of geography. Saarinen received the award for his outstanding research on tourism-related issues, such as sustainability, responsible tourism and adaptation to climate change. The well-published professor has conducted his research in peripheral areas in the Arctic and South Africa. Image: University of Oulu

Nokia completes first phase to digitalise Belgian port

Finnish company Nokia has completed phase one of deploying a 5G-ready, industrial-grade private wireless network at the Port of Zeebrugge in Belgium. Its digital cloud automation platform will enable the port to improve operational efficiency and deliver a range of new and enhanced services. At the moment, the network is used for connectivity with tugboats, air pollution detectors, security cameras and quay sensors. After the network has been fully deployed, it will enable the port to track, analyse and manage connected devices across multiple port-based applications in real time. Image: Port of Zeebrugge

Finns rank Valio as country’s most sustainable brand

Finnish dairy company Valio has been ranked by Finns as the most sustainable brand in Finland for the seventh consecutive year in the Sustainable Brand Index. The survey is Europe’s largest for measuring brand sustainability, with around 58 000 people across the continent taking part this year. Finns, it found, regard Finnish origin, animal welfare and sustainable packaging as especially important. Valio is a cooperative-based company owned by 4 700 dairy farmers around Finland. Image: Valio

Sarlin closes significant deal in China

Finnish company Sarlin will deliver its complete solution for compressed air control to one of the largest Chinese steel mills, the Ansteel Bayuquan branch in the Liaoning province of China. The Sarlin Balance solution brings energy savings to industrial facilities and enables them to manage their compressed air systems more easily and safely with remote access. Ansteel is among the world’s largest steel groups with a total production of 38 million tonnes. Image: Sarlin

Oura Ring trialled in the US for early COVID-19 detection

Finnish startup Oura has started a partnership with the University of California, San Francisco to determine if its smart rings can be used for early detection of the COVID-19 virus. Oura Ring tracks the user’s body temperature, heart rate, activity levels and quality of sleep. As part of the trial, around 2 000 healthcare professionals will wear the smart ring and the more than 150 000 ring users will be invited to contribute to the pool of data. The trial comes after reports of a Finnish man who noticed with the help of the ring that his body temperature had risen and was subsequently tested and diagnosed with the virus. Image: Oura

Vilkas announces Save the Stores campaign

Finnish e-commerce company Vilkas has started a campaign to help struggling companies in Finland, Sweden and Norway to take their businesses online. During the campaign, companies can set up a shop online free of charge for up to six months to ride out the worst of the crisis. Read more about it by following the headline to our breaking news article. Image: Vilkas