Dear Lucy has been approved to the Young Innovative Company program of Business Finland. The government-funded program provides funding of up to 1.25 million euros and it is designed to accelerate the global growth of the most promising startups. Previous participants include the likes of Supercell, Wolt, Transfluent, HappyOrNot and ZenRobotics.
Business Finland is the Finnish government organization for innovation funding and trade, travel and investment promotion. With the Young Innovative Company funding program, Business Finland intends to accelerate the global growth of the most ambitious, rapidly growing startups in Finland.
Young Innovative Company funding can be granted to companies that are less than 5 years old and have an innovative business idea or a product. The funding is designed to be used for sales and marketing activities that enable strong international growth.
The maximum amount of Young Innovative Company funding amounts to €1.25 million, of which a maximum of €500,000 may be funded as a grant and €750,000 as a loan.
Designed for companies with a proven track record
“To be approved, the company’s business model needs to be scalable, and the company needs to have credible proof, or history, of scalability” explains Pauli Noronen, Chief Advisor at Business Finland.
“For B2B SaaS companies, like Dear Lucy, this typically means, that the company already has significant customer relationships in international markets and revenues of at least 250 000 euros,” Noronen continues.
“Naturally, qualities like a capable team, solid go to market strategy and an ability to get funding from private sources, need to be in place as well”, Noronen concludes.
“We are honoured to have been selected to the program”, says Taina Sipilä, Founder and CEO of Dear Lucy and one of the few “second-timers” in the Young Innovative Companies program.
Her first company Sympa went through the full program earlier. Taina Sipilä founded Sympa in 2005 together with her brother and today, the company is the fastest growing HR solutions provider in the Nordics.
“The program significantly supports the scaling of Dear Lucy’s international operations,” Taina explains. “We are currently focused on strengthening our position as part of global ecosystems such as HubSpot, Pipedrive and Salesforce and this program supports that mission. We already have users in more than 20 countries and are putting in place scalable processes to serve our increasing customer base,” she concludes.
Funding up to 1.25 million euros
Since 2008, a total of 411 promising startups have been selected to the Young Innovative Company funding program and roughly 40-50 companies get selected each year.
The funding can be used for the comprehensive development of business activities: new recruitments, business model development, growth strategy and go-to-market activities. The program includes several phases each with its own set of business goals that a company needs to reach in order to proceed to the following program level.
Previous participants include the likes of Supercell, Wolt, Transfluent, HappyOrNot and ZenRobotics who have all completed the full program. The full list of companies who have been approved to the program can be found on the Business Finland website.
For more info on Dear Lucy’s globalization plans, please contact CEO Taina Sipilä.