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Ioan Canta is the Migrant Entrepreneur of the Year 2020

Ioan Canta is the Migrant Entrepreneur of the Year 2020. The finalists in this year’s tight race were serial entrepreneurs Daria and Jean-François Flogny and digital entrepreneur Alexander Ivaine.

The competition aims to present migrant entrepreneurs and highlight how important they are for everyday life. The winner of the Migrant Entrepreneur of the Year competition was announced on 9 December 2020 at the Business Unplugged event organized by Suomen Yrittäjät.

Strong story and responsible business pave the path to victory

Ioan Canta, originally from Romania and the owner of the company BNA Flonel, has been chosen as the winner of the competition in 2020. The jury was particularly impressed by Canta’s hard work over many years to grow his company. BNA Flonel began with domestic cleaning services and then expanded to office cleaning, construction cleaning and removal cleaning. The company also provides labour-only building contracting, protective materials and contractual labour. The company has consistently grown and operated profitably.

The company’s employees have enjoyed working there for many years. Canta invests in corporate social responsibility by supporting causes such as disabled children with the Finnish Association of People with Physical Disabilities and cancer research.

Canta has faced prejudice because of his Romanian background. For this reason, he has worked twice as hard to grow his business and build his clients’ trust. The jury felt that Carina’s story, attitude, business strategy and corporate social responsibility deserved to be recognized with the €5,000 prize and the title of Migrant Entrepreneur of the Year 2020. The employment pension provider Elo funded the €5,000 prize.

BNA Flonel, €2.2 million turnover, 45 employees.

Jean-François and Darja Flogny praised for their entrepreneurial attitude and commitment to employees

Jean-François and Darja Flogny are true serial entrepreneurs and passionate people who take good care of their employees. The Flogny couple own three companies which focus on providing services in Koli National Park. They want to promote the development of tourism in North Karelia, highlight the challenges of running a business in a remote area, and hire foreign workers in the area. The jury was impressed by the entrepreneur couple’s fearless attitude, their temerity for running several businesses and love of entrepreneurship.

Koli Companies, €800,000 turnover, 8 permanent and 30 seasonal employees.
Koli Active, €250,000 turnover, 3 employees.
Meanwhile in The North, €48,000 turnover, no employees

Alexander Ivaine: impressive inventiveness and advanced digital skills

Alexander Ivaine is the owner of a start-up focusing on smart urban design operating in an important sector that represents modern technology and environmental friendliness. Ivaine is the person behind the app-controlled heating socket eTolppa and the eParking solution. He became an entrepreneur while studying at the technical university in Hervanta, Tampere. He got his business idea from students’ need to have warmed up cars early in the morning in the winter, and now his company is already producing a wide range of solutions for the future. The jury was impressed by Ivaine’s advanced knowhow and inventiveness and convinced that IGL-Technologies has come to the market for good.

€1.2 million turnover, 10 employees

The members of the jury were: Ali Giray, chair of the Suomen Yrittäjät Migrant entrepreneur network; Faisa Egge, the 2019 winner; Marko Hara, a director at the employment pension company Elo; and Petri Salminen, chair of the board of Suomen Yrittäjät.

Contact person
Aicha Manai, Network Manager, Suomen Yrittäjät, +358445553220, aicha.manai @ yrittajat.fi