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      Business ventures coming with FinnFest

      There are only nine more weeks until the biggest Finnish cultural event of the year.

      In addition to the many cultural celebrations that will take place during FinnFest, there will also be a two-day business forum where local businesses can network with companies from Finland.

      FinnFest business forum chair Kevin Manninen said over the years, FinnFest has expanded to include other aspects of Finland besides just culture.

      â??Although FinnFest has typically been a cultural festival, more and more the Finnish government is seeing this as a way of promoting Finland in other areas, especially in some of the areas Finland is very well known, such as business, technology, and education,â?? explained Manninen.

      One company taking part in the forum is MTEC SmartZone. SmartZone provides remote offices for many different companies and provides the resources needed to do business all over the world. The hope is that Finnish companies would be ready to make a soft-landing in these offices to do business here.

      â??We have common areas for companies to use in terms of conference rooms,â?? said Clark. â??So much business today is done electronically through web meetings and web presentations and Skype conversations, et cetera. We have all the facilities here to do that, so you can communicate with people all over the world.â??

      Not only does our area provide the facilities needed for incoming companies, Manninen said the area also provides manpower and brainpower.

      â??We have a wealth of expertise in engineering and science, and certainly, Finnish companies could certainly come here and make use of that,â?? Manninen said. â??In addition, we have a lot of companies here that are interested in either directly in the Finnish market or partnering with Finnish companies to further develop their business interests.â??

      Clark said the new business ventures would not only benefit the Finnish companies, they will help our area as well by keeping employment and money local.

      â??When they get American customers, itâ??s revenue, or money, coming in here,â?? Clark explained. â??Itâ??s opportunity for them to have people who are employed in the area working for a Finnish company looking for customers to come into the area, so it helps our economy.â??