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Vast majority of Finnish businesses microenterprises

In 2022 microenterprises made up 95.5% of Finnish businesses.

New data from Statistics Finland on businesses’ structure and financial statements give an encouraging picture of the Finnish entrepreneurial spirit in challenging times.

The number of businesses in Finland increased steadily from 2018 to 2022, the last year for which figures exist.

Businesses started up in Finland in 2022 in a difficult situation, as inflation, in particularly, dogged many sectors. Nevertheless, the total number of businesses grew by almost 13,000.

“The statistics show that in spite of the present challenges, business owners believe in the future. They also see that (smaller) businesses are capable of reacting fast enough to a constantly changing environment and its challenges,” Petri Malinen, an economist at Suomen Yrittäjät, the Finnish SME association, says.

“Keeping the national economy’s wheels turning”

The Statistics Finland data also show the breakdown of businesses by size. The vast majority of Finnish businesses in 2022 were microenterprises employing 1–9 people. The share of microenterprises was 95.5%.

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“The statistics on businesses’ structure and financial statements remind us all that small businesses under ten people are the ones that keep the wheels of the nation’s economy turning. Even though we need businesses of all sizes, actions that ensure microenterprises can succeed and grow should be at the centre of business policy. That’s in the interest of society as a whole,” Malinen says.

A microenterprise is defined as a business which employs fewer than 10 employees.

“Crucial role”

Malinen says that microenterprises’ size gives them a crucial significance in the workings of Finnish society.

“They are by far the companies that people interact most with every day and the source of most new jobs. As subcontractors in the value chain, microenterprises are a lifeline for many larger businesses.”

Malinen stresses that to preserve the welfare state, it is important that businesses want to grow, create more value and generate jobs.

Petteri Orpo’s Government Programme has many good initiatives for methods to help improve microenterprises’ operating conditions and growth opportunities. It’s important that the goals for company-specific bargaining are pursued with determination. These steps will, in turn, generate trust among business owners that will encourage them to grow. What’s more, it’s important that businesses have access to finance on reasonable terms. For example, the crucial role of Finnvera as a supplementary funder must absolutely be retained.”

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Pauli Reinikainen