Record numbers

The number of greenfield investments to Finland and acquisitions by foreign companies hit a new high in 2017.

A total of 336 new international companies set up shop in Finland last year, either as a result of acquisitions or establishing a new office outright, according to new figures released by Invest in Finland. This figure is almost 20 per cent higher than 2016.

The highest number of investments (95) came from Sweden, and the most popular sector targeted by foreign investment was knowledge-intensive business services. Sweden also saw the largest growth year-on-year.

Other major investor countries were Great Britain (55), the US (30), Denmark (25) and Norway (19). The number of new Chinese companies investing in Finland was 12, the same as last year.

The business services, health and wellbeing, and ICT sectors attracted the most foreign-owned companies, similar to 2016.

“According to EY’s 2017 Nordics Attractiveness Report, Finland was quantitatively the most interesting destination for new foreign direct investment in the Nordic countries,” says Antti Aumo, head of Invest in Finland. “Finland is stable and transparent as a society and it offers companies a very interesting innovation environment in many sectors, such as the health and ICT sectors. Our strong ecosystems are attractive.”

Invest in Finland also reported that the number of follow-up investments by foreign companies has also continued to grow, with some 200 expansion investments in Finland during the past year.

There are about 4 600 international companies operating in Finland, employing almost 240 000 people.

The news comes as Finland seeks to attract also foreign talent to its shores with initiatives such as the new Startup Permit.

Record numbers