The Covid-19 pandemic reduced new orders from manufacturing companies and prolonged delivery times. In September 2020, Business Finland launched five packages of measures to support customer acquisition in the Finnish manufacturing industry.
During 2020–2021, Business Finland supported the manufacturing industry by building joint offers, identifying new markets and customer groups, and implementing targeted export incentives.
The aim was to secure the operational capacity of companies and keep industrial jobs in Finland. The measures were funded through an additional operating expenditure appropriation granted by the Finnish government to Business Finland in its June 2020 supplementary budget.
The themes of the measures included manufacturing industry mapping, engineering companies, the maritime industry, textile recycling and bio-based textiles, the packaging industry, the battery value chain, and diagnostics.
New partners were sought for mechanical engineering companies from Central Europe, Asia, Australia, and New Zealand. The maritime, battery, packaging, and textile industries, among others, participated in building joint Finnish offerings. The offerings have now been exported to the target markets of each industry. Business Finland offered webinars for both Finnish companies and foreign parties in relation to each theme.
Business Finland launched a campaign on how the manufacturing industry could prepare for crises. As part of the campaign, Business Finland published a digital guide on the resilience of sustainable production. (pdf)
It remains to be seen, how the changing global situation will affect the manufacturing industry
“We created the service package on short notice in a completely new operating environment. Before the pandemic, companies largely acquired new customers through face-to-face sales work. Consequently, switching to virtual platforms was not just a technical issue – the companies had to learn to build customer relationships in a new manne. In retrospect, they adapted to the new virtual operating model very quickly”, tells Toni Mattila, program director of Sustainable Manufacturing Finland.
“We also managed to scale the operating model for many different business sectors and target markets. During the 18-month campaign, we operated in almost 20 different countries, and nearly a thousand Finnish companies took advantage of the campaign. It remains to be seen, how the changing global situation will affect the manufacturing industry”, Mattila continues.
toni.mattila (at) businessfinland.fi