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Innovation ecosystem

Enter the ecosystem of sustainable growth and innovation

Welcome to the innovation driver of Finland. Espoo is where Finland’s most valuable corporations are located. As are Finland’s two most important sustainable innovation players — Aalto University and VTT Technical Research Center of Finland. Slush, the leading startup event in the world, and most of Finland’s unicorns were born here. So was the whole Finnish startup miracle. 

No wonder international companies come to Espoo to find out what’s next in innovation. And it’s so easy to do so. Espoo is a part of the Helsinki capital region — only 30 min away from Helsinki Airport and 10 min by metro from the centre of Helsinki.

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The source of Finnish deep tech and home of startups

Want to tap into Finland’s treasure chest of technology innovation? You’ve come to the right place! 

Unicorns such as MySQL, Rovio, and Supercell came from here — as do about a hundred startups every year.

VTT is the largest applied research institution in the Nordics with a strong track record of commercialising research to business. VTT is also the main source of Finnish deep technology — in an ecosystem that specialises in deep tech startups. 

Aalto University is Finland’s #1 university for technology, business, art and design. It was also from Aalto that the Finnish startup ecosystem emerged in the late 00s. Thanks to the Aalto students, Espoo is now the driving force of the Finnish startup scene.

  • Aalto is creating the largest startup ecosystem in Europe.
  • More than half of Finland’s university-related startups come from Aalto.
  • Aalto Startup Center is ranked in the top 5 of university business accelerators worldwide.
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Finland’s biggest companies joined by international innovation players 

Next door to Finland’s hottest startup hubs, you can find many of the most valuable Finnish companies. Fortum and Neste pave the way in clean energy while KONE builds a foundation for even smarter cities. And don’t forget that Nokia is still here. The former mobile phone king is now leading global 5G development.

International innovation organisations like The European Space Agency’s (ESA) Business Incubation Centre in Finland, The United Nations Technology and Innovation Labs Finland (UNTIL), and The European Institute of Innovation & Technology (EIT) in Finland have set up shop in Espoo.  

They are joined by many official Finnish innovation players, such as Finnish Center of Artificial Intelligence (FCAI), FinnCERES (lignocellulose and materials bioeconomy), Smart Otaniemi (smart energy), and Synbio Powerhouse (synthetic biology). 

Naturally, the strengths of Espoo’s innovation ecosystem are recognised internationally, and Espoo has the rankings to prove it: 

  • The most sustainable city in Europe (2016, 2017).
  • The most intelligent community in the world (2018).
  • Finalist in the European Capital of Innovation Awards (2019, 2020). 

A city of quality of living and talent 

Espoo is Finland’s second-largest city — with a quality of living that’s second to none. Espoo residents are the healthiest and among the happiest in Finland. The city’s living environment is family-friendly, green space is in abundance, and the living costs are decent. 

Espoo is an international city of talent:

  • The highest density of international talent and the highest education level of all Finnish cities.
  • 52% of residents over 24 years old hold a university degree. 
  • The city is home for over 150 nationalities.
  • English has an official status as a public service language. 

Espoo has it all — welcome to Espoo’s innovation ecosystem!

Find technologies and startups, invest in or get access to Espoo’s innovation ecosystem 

Enter Espoo matches international corporations and investors with the right startups, technologies, and investment opportunities in Espoo’s innovation ecosystem. We give you an easy access to the leading innovation hub in the Nordics. 

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