We all know that Finland is well known for extensive governmental support for start-ups and it is only fair considering the corporate and private income taxes in the country. It provides the necessary boost and additional investment incentives for angels and other private investors.
In 2011, Tekes Tempo launched with an idea to provide 50% non-dilutive funding to companies that would be building market-oriented services. In total the program funded 61 startups such as Kiosked, LivLiv and HeiaHeia. The total amount provided came to EUR 3.7 Million.
This was seen as a success and the program was silently restarted in April 2013 with a new funding system and an expanded selection criteria. ArcticStartup got together with Tuomas Henttonen, Tekes Tempo Program Manager to find out more.
According to Henttonen “[the difference] is that it is not only for mobile anymore. It is now open for all industries. The second big difference is that now we are able to offer a 75% grant.”
To clarify, the companies still need to provide self-financing that will cover 50% of the cost of the project, however they will now receive a 75% non-dilutive grant when they do so. The reasoning being is that the program tries to put private funding first.
In regards to the selection criteria, Henttonen expanded that “It can be anything, but we are looking for more global startups that are doing customer development and aiming for fast growth. Especially we are looking for great teams that have commitment and an ‘all-in’ mentality.”
This means that it can be absolutely anything but Henttonen expects most of the applications to come from the ICT sector.
The project funds only Finnish companies, but they can be incorporated by a team from anywhere. Since the relaunch no funding announcements have been made but they are currently open for applications.