Start-ups receive EUR 100 million in funding through Vigo

The Vigo Accelerator Programme, designed to provide quick access to funding and to accelerate the internationalisation of high potential start-ups, has succeeded in activating experienced serial entrepreneurs and in attracting a significant amount of venture capital to new companies, according to the interim report published on February 1st 2013, commissioned by the Ministry of Employment and the Economy.

In addition to achieving the funding targets, the programme has developed into a high-profile brand. According to the report, the programme has created a new channel that makes world-class competence and private funding available to growth companies, enabling the start-up of high potential growth companies and their entry into the international markets.

- Our evaluation shows that the Vigo Accelerator Programme has started off very well. It has succeeded in attracting a substantial amount of equity investment in innovative Finnish start-up companies. As such, we find the Vigo concept very innovative, and we believe it has a good chance to make a significant contribution towards the creation and growth of new innovative ventures in Finland," says ProfessorErkko Autto, one of the programme reviewers.

Participating companies felt they received support through the Vigo accelerators in areas such as strategy development, growthorientation and networking with potential customers and investors. The report contains several suggestions regarding the duration of the programme, flexibility and public funding.

Vapaavuori: an encouraging example of an entirely new approach

- The report confirms that the Vigo programme is an encouraging example of a new approach the government can adopt when working with private sector entities, in order to create new companies that are equipped to generate significant international growth," says Minister of Economic Affairs Jan Vapaavuori.

- This programme paves the way for a strong growth company ecosystem in Finland," says Pekka Soini,Director General of Tekes.

The Ministry of Employment and the Economy launched the Vigo Accelerator Programme in 2009. The programme now includes nine accelerators that coach 60 selected companies and help them attain international growth. Programme participants include Supercell, Transfluent, Senseg, ZenRobotics, Enersize and Zokem.

The assessment: The Vigo Programme Mid-Term Evaluation

For further information, please contact: 
Pertti Valtonen, Industrial Counsellor, MEE, tel. +358 50 500 3198 
Professor Erkko Autto, London Imperial College Business School, tel. +44 77 8622 6452 
Pete Pokkinen, Special Adviser to the Minister of Economic Affairs, tel. 040 756 7180

2013-02-04 13:38
Marit Tuominen