As the global venture capital landscape is still waiting to bounce back from a generational slump, Helsinki has laid the groundwork and positioned itself as a prime destination for VCs and startups to have a strong year in 2024. Renowned for its high-profit investments, strategic location, and robust support infrastructure, the Finnish capital is fast becoming a beacon for international VCs.
During 2023, many global VCs have set up operations in the world’s happiest capital
“If you are a VC considering opening a new office, Finland and especially Helsinki should be at the top of your list. The country and the city offer exceptional regulatory stability, a business-friendly environment, a strong innovation culture coupled with low hierarchy, and widespread English proficiency. The country excels as a hub for cutting-edge advancements in digitalization and green transition, making it an ideal location for backing top-tier innovation. Even during an economic downturn, a strong foundation has been built for both early and late-stage ventures. Helsinki is ready when the economy starts thriving again,” highlights Tian Yu, Senior Advisor at Helsinki Partners.
The Finnish Venture Capital Association (FVCA) also remains optimistic about the Helsinki ecosystem.
“Finland has a lot of early-stage funding available and maintained these levels during 2023. Over the recent decade, the Finnish startup ecosystem has matured – and after many successful exits and global growth stories, we now have a pool of highly experienced entrepreneurs both investing in and building the next wave of European tech companies. It’s no wonder that international VCs are interested in integrating into the Finnish ecosystem,” Jonne Kuittinen, Deputy Chief Executive at FVCA explains.
One of the new players in Helsinki is a global investor, Antler, who has outlined ambitious plans to take advantage of the local entrepreneurial spirit, with intentions to establish 50 new companies within Finland through the company’s residency program. “Finland and Helsinki are truly at the forefront of global innovation. High entrepreneurial spirit, strong technological know-how, and a forward-thinking mindset create an environment where investment and startups can thrive. Helsinki is an attractive destination for global talent and in Antler’s residency program, 50% of applicants are expats. This is a sign that Helsinki is not just a place to invest: it’s a place to shape the future,” says Jussi Kallasvuo, partner at Antler.
Domestic funds are also strengthening their presence: in the first half of 2023, Finnish VC funds raised a historic €265 million. The period also saw new international investors and the launch of several new funds, including Kvanted, which focuses on industrial tech investment, Finnish-American Failup Ventures, and digital-first green transition investor Greencode Ventures. In addition, household names like Lifeline Ventures, Voima Ventures, IPR VC, and Nordic Ninja announced new funds. Overall, a total of 15 new VC teams have been formed in Finland during the past five years (FVCA).
The year 2024 looks promising for venture capital and startups in Finland, with established VC firms raising high amounts of funding, emerging VC companies setting up business, and foreign VCs relocating to the country. The excellent groundwork in Finland’s venture capital and startup landscape has created a range of opportunities for both startups and investors, setting the stage for new records in the field.
Helsinki Partners makes it easy to set up shop in Helsinki
Helsinki’s commitment to fostering a supportive business ecosystem is evident in the various initiatives and resources available for startups and VCs.
“The support we received from Helsinki Partners was instrumental in our decision. The city’s commitment to nurturing startups and providing access to a wide network of meaningful connections has played a vital part in our decision making process,” Kallasvuo continues.
Beyond its professional advantages, Helsinki offers an exceptional quality of life. Renowned for its clean environment, high standard of education, and robust healthcare system, the city provides a welcoming atmosphere for professionals and their families.
It is possible to discover Helsinki’s distinctive atmosphere, renowned ecosystem, and exceptional work-life balance firsthand by joining the Venture Nordics program by Helsinki Partners. The program, running from May 30th to June 7th, 2024, offers a unique opportunity to learn all you need to know about the Finnish venture ecosystem in just 9 Days. The application period is open until February 18th, 2024. Don’t miss out—apply now!