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Finnish startups the most attractive in Europe

All in all, Finnish growth companies received 1.3 billion euros in funding in 2018.Jussi Hellsten / City of Helsinki

Startups in Finland attracted the most venture capital investments relative to GDP among European countries in 2018.

Early-stage growth companies and startups raised a record-breaking 479 million euros in 2018. Venture capital investments made up 203 million euros of the total, amounting to 0.096 per cent of GDP – the highest proportion in Europe and twice the European average.

“The venture capital market in Finland has diversified in a short time, and there is plenty of funding available for companies ranging from early-stage startups to ones already expanding their global presence,” commented Pia Santavirta, managing director of the Finnish Venture Capital Association (FVCA).

Small Giant Games, ICEYE and HMD Global received some of the most notable venture capital investments in 2018, leading the way in nearly doubling the total amount of venture capital invested in Finnish companies. 2019 isn’t looking too bad either, with Relex raising 200 million, Wolt 130 million and Nordcloud 20 million euros.

“The average venture capital investment currently stands at 745 000 euros. In addition to funding, venture capitalists bring much-needed help in building networks, recruiting and implementing a growth strategy,” Santavirta continued.

Finland’s investments relative to GDP almost doubled from 2017, when venture capital investments marked 0.055 per cent of GDP, although still ahead of the European average of 0.039 per cent. Image: FVCA
By: Samuli Ojala