Business Kuopio


Slush 2021– Lively event with many new contacts


By the flashing lights of Slush event, Mika Raatikainen and Stepan Tirkkonen

Slush – one of the world’s largest startup events – brought together the world’s leading founders, investors, executives, and media for a curated gathering at Helsinki Finland on 1st and 2nd of December 2021. Despite the fact, that the event was scaled down to meet the Covid-19 requirements, approximately 8,800 participants (3,600 companies and 800 investors) had arrived at the Helsinki Expo and Convention Center. Plus, the event gathered businesspersons to meet each other for a very large number of side events around the metropolitan area. With the great enthusiasm to promote scalable growth, access to finance and partnerships!

Kuopio Goes Slush -side event on Tue 30th of November 2021

During the autumn of 2021, Kasve Oy organized the Road to Slush coaching training, which culminated in a Kuopio Goes Slush -side event in Putte’s Bar and Pizza in Helsinki. The coaching helped Eastern Finland startups to develop their presentations to investors as well as provided a way to develop their own business ideas and put them into practice. Startups, entrepreneurs and investors were welcome to the Kuopio Goes Slush -side event. In the end, the event drew a crowd of more than 40 people.

Audience at the Kuopio Goes Slush event in Putte’s Bar

At the event, participants were able to network and pitch to investors. Five pitching companies had been selected to the event, from which a company called Treebuddy was chosen as the winner of the evening’s pitching competition. The judge of the competition was venture partner Harry Santamäki from Voima Ventures.

Slush -First Day on Wed 1st of December 2021

At Slush, Business Kuopio's Stepan Tirkkonen and representatives of Infopib communications platform solutions, sitting around the table

Slush’s active participants, project manager Stepan Tirkkonen and business promotion officer Mika Raatikainen, got acquainted with Infopib communications platform solutions and services under the guidance of Global head of Platforms Tamara Rajić (in the middle of the picture). The opening of the Slush event was brilliantly seen from the second floor of the exhibition stand. Thanks for that.

At Slush, Business Kuopio's Mika Raatikainen and Business Program Manager Kati Lappeteläinen smiling to the camera

Startup Refugees is a Finnish social innovation, which has a solution for the fast integration of newcomers to the labour markets. Together with a network of more than 1000 members, Startup Refugees offer asylum seekers, refugees and immigrants support in employment and entrepreneurship. At their booth Stepan and Mika met Business Program Manager Kati Lappeteläinen and discussed the integration of foreign labor into Finnish working life.

At Slush, at the AstraZeneca booth Artem Shakhbazyan and Stepan Tirkkonen

At the AstraZeneca booth we met International Commercial Innovation Lead Artem Shakhbazyan from Moscow, Russia. We planned a possible visit (in future) to the Biomedical cluster, which operates as a part of the Skolkovo Innovation Center near Moscow.

Slush -Second Day on Thu 2nd of December 2021

At Slush, Nordic Innovation House Community Director Niklas Karvonen and Business Kuopio's Stepan Tirkkonen having a coffee

We enjoyed our morning coffee with Nordic Innovation House Community Director Niklas Karvonen. He had arrived in Slush directly from Tokyo and had decided to continue his Scandinavian tour to Sweden. Kuopio-based companies already have fairly good connections with Japan, especially in the health and wellbeing sector. We would like to deepen our knowledge and cooperation as well as trade relations between our countries through a variety of joint activities.

In the tent set up, we participated in the announcement of the partnership agreement between the Finnish company Sensible4 and the German company Moove. Together the companies are aiming to bring a new self-driving serial-produced shuttle bus to the European market in 2023.

At Slush, representatives of the Finnish company Sensible4 and the German company Moove at the stage

At the launch event, the directors of both companies (in the picture CEO Harri Santamala on the left, and CEO Stefan Miltenyi) spoke about the opportunities for cooperation to build more functional unmanned vehicles for harsh conditions. The Sensible 4 Oy’s technology combines the information produced by different sensor products with software in a way that enables vehicles to operate in different weather conditions, including snow and fog. That’s just what we have here in Finland!

Overall, Slush 2021 was a very lively event despite the difficulty of traveling caused by the pandemic. With good preparation, we managed to meet a very large number of foreign contacts in a short two-day period. In this blog, I introduced only the hottest of them. Smiley Face!

Mika Raatikainen

Business promotion officer
City of Kuopio, Business Development Services
+358 44 718 2048


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