- We would like to know a little about your personal backstory that shaped the way for where you are now.
My education background is combination of business and philosophy from Turku in Finland and Tampa in United States respectively.
As for my working experience, I’ve been working at Xamk for the last 16 years, mostly as a teacher before moving to the R&D department, as Research Manager, couple of years ago
- Can you tell us in brief how the responsible organisations work together to implement this project?
So basically, the main goal of these organisations is to promote the student-led start-ups. To make that happen the money grants from Otsakorpi Foundation comes to Xamk and it is delivered through the Patteri ES, which acts like a peer marketing channel.
- What is this program about and how does it work?
This is a micro-financing program which grants money for business development. It offers support for the experimentation not only for the designers but also for creative purposes like market study etc. If you are interested, your business plan would be evaluated. Since it is conducted 3 times in a year, any aspirant with a strong business plan can participate in each round.
- How successful was this program when it was last conducted 2 years ago and how is it different this time?
Last time when it was conducted, we had 46 aspirants out of which 16 were granted 600€ grants on an average. So, 1/3rd of the applicants were successful in getting these grants.
This time since the budget is almost 3 times more than the last time, we are looking forward to grant even more aspiring entrepreneurs.
- What is the long term benefit you believe this program has?
For the students, I’d say that any creation is valuable, not necessarily immediately but definitely in the long run.
It helps the school to promote itself as an entrepreneurial university and the Kymenlaakson region to attract more companies resulting in entrepreneurial growth.
- What have you learned so far in such a vast working experience?
I have learned that move fast but be patient and never give up. Also, working with young people, my heart stays young and my creativity never ends.
- What are your personal opinions regarding start-ups in the real world?
They teach that there is nothing wrong in failing in entrepreneurial environment. At the same time, they challenge the existing companies to bring changes in their business approach.
- Do you any tips and suggestions for individual entrepreneurs?
I can say that never stop believing in yourselves, resource management is very important, connect and network with people from different disciplines.
- Which businessman inspires you the most?
Well, I don’t do this admiring business very much but yeah, I can say my friends Yngve Nyman and Tommi Hautola, have done admirable work.