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Navigating global success in Varkaus region

16.04.2024

Did you know that one of Finland’s most significant industrial hubs is in North Savo, on the shores of Lake Saimaa? Crowned as the export capital of North Savo, Varkaus with its neighboring municipalities is a great region to invest and do business in. Here are 5 + 1 reasons why!

1. Varkaus region carries a rich industrial legacy, and this legacy is a driving force for our future

Over 200 years ago, industrial pioneer Walter A. Ahlström had a vision: What if we built an entire city centered around industry? As a result, Varkaus became the most significant industrial center in Eastern Finland, a legacy that persists to this day. The chimneys of the Stora Enso factory serve as a tangible reminder for each new generation that the city has been built around industry, not the other way around.

Today, the industrial heritage serves as a foundation for ongoing innovation and growth. The companies operating in Varkaus region are known for their future-forward vision, resilience, and innovative mindsets. Over the past decade, region’s companies have demonstrated their ambition for growth through substantial investments. In fact, a total of €700 million has been invested in Varkaus within the last 10 years!

2. Few regions can match the global connectivity found here

Varkaus region is a testament to the fusion of international expertise and a vibrant local business environment.

Relative to its size, Varkaus hosts and exceptionally high number of global industry giants providing services around the world. Companies such as Stora Enso, Sumitomo SHI FW, ANDRITZ, Aikawa Fiber Technologies and Honeywell all place their trust on Varkaus as a platform for growth.

This ecosystem extends to a supportive network of SMEs, each providing a rich tapestry of expertise and services to the overall synergy. Our region’s strengths lie not only in energy technology, a sector currently undergoing a transformative revolution, but in the traditional forestry and metal industries. 

The collaboration of international giants and a local supply chain has resulted in a thriving export industry. We’ll let the numbers speak for themselves: There are over 110 operating in forest, energy and metal sectors in Varkaus region, directly employing 4500 professionals. This ecosystem alone is generating a substantial turnover of €1.3 billion, with exports valued at €700 million.

3. Our distinctiveness lies in the collaborative spirit

Our strong networks and historical roots foster easy connections with people, businesses and community. The region’s close-knit ecosystems encourage collaboration, innovation and continual improvement, urging businesses to remain competitive.

4. The green transition is coming – and we are ready

In Varkaus region, both multinational corporations and SMEs are playing a crucial role in the energy transition. Their involvement spans from adopting sustainable practices to developing innovative solutions.

Here, businesses don’t have to face the challenges of the green transition alone. The North Savo Energy Cluster has emerged as a strategic initiative to promote and support the renewable energy industry, e.g. in terms of hydrogen economy, carbon dioxide recovery and the innovation of new energy storage systems. Moreover, global companies offer additional support and networks, enriching opportunities for sustainable development. 

5. Top experts and a prime location

The expertise from Varkaus region is highly valued worldwide, particularly in fields such as industrial design, engineering, installation and maintenance. Savonia University of Applied Sciences and Savo Vocational College, both situated in Varkaus, play a vital role in supplying the expertise that companies need.

And finally, Varkaus enjoys a strategically central location in terms of logistics. We are situated at the crossroads of major transportation routes, including highways, railways and waterways. You can reach nearly 500,000 people within a one-and-a-half hour drive radius. The nearest airport is located in Kuopio, just about an hour’s drive away.

Bonus: A helping hand when you need one

Interested in expanding your business or looking for new opportunities? Navitas Business Services is here to help you!

Navitas Business Services is a development company owned by the City of Varkaus. Our job is to reinforce regional attractivity and foster the growth of businesses in Varkaus region. Our services are tailored for companies and entrepreneurs at every stage of their journey.

Are you ready to make Varkaus your business home? Come meet us at Tahko Ski Lift Pitch!

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