Finnish entrepreneurs have less and less to back up their complaints about any lack of seed funding. On top of strong government grants and loans from Tekes, Finnish business angels have boomed in the last year, roughly doubling their number of investments and the amount invested. Thanks to this FiBAN, the Finnish Business Angels Network, has been awarded the “Best Performing European Business Angel Network 2014” by the European Business Angels Network.
Put in to numbers, FiBAN counts 450 Angels as members, which makes it one of Europe’s largest and most active groups. Looking at dealflow over 400 startups submitted to FiBAN Angels in 2014, which resulted in over €21 million invested in 238 startups. That’s a good increase from €11 million invested into 164 startups in 2013.
Of these, FiBAN counts 10 exits from their portfolio, with six out of ten being positive. According to FiBAN “every sixth exit gave a return of 10x or more”.
After hearing grumbling from Finnish entrepreneurs over the years about the lack of seed stage money, anecdotally the mindset has changed. Good ideas seem to get funded in Finland, and entrepreneurs in Norway have even referred to Finland having a strong angel scene – something that might not have been said a few years ago.. A developed seed funding scene is crucial for supporting the next generation of startups, so it’s good to see some new money and experienced entrepreneurs working together to keep this party going.