Challenges faced by Indian ICT SMEs
Indian SMEs form the backbone of the economy. However, they face numerous roadblocks and challenges such as a lack of funds, poor infrastructure, inability to innovate, lack of skilled talent in IT, knowledge gap in technology and lack of skills and training. These problems require an out-of-the-box approach to resolving these issues and many Indian SMEs are looking to setup their business abroad to resolve these problems. Finland, has proven to be the best possible country for Indian ICT firms to expand to and this article explores exactly why.
Finland as the best location for international expansion
Finland is known as a world tech hub; the home of Nokia and Angry Birds. It is also the homeland of the SMS, SSH security protocol and the first wearable smart device. Indian giants Infosys, Wipro and TCS have long since set up operations in Finland. But Finland has also proven to be a hot-spot for Indian ICT SMEs that struggle to go forward in India.
Indian firms have expanded their business to Finland to resolve the problems faced as a small ICT SME in India, in particular finding skilled talent at competitive costs, lack of innovation and technology. This is because, in Finland, firms find various locational advantages that trump any other country or city in the world.
Important factors in selecting a foreign country
The most important choices to consider when it comes to choosing a foreign location are:
- Government support
- Customer Base
- Legal structure and regulatory climate
Recruitment in Finland
Finnish authorities ELY (The Centre for Economic Development, Transport and Environment) provide help to Indian firms in recruiting and training people for their businesses.
ELY has a database of qualified personnel and means to advertise for them. They also co-finance training programmes with the company and the company jointly selects the final employee.
The human resource in Finland is also highly talented and skilled in the IT, ICT sectors. They speak fluent English and have experience in international business and multi-cultural contexts. For Indian firms looking for the best talent at competitive costs – Finland is highly suitable as the cost of labour is significantly lower than the US, UK, Germany and many other places.
Firms need to consider the costs of operating a business abroad along with the cost of setting it up. Costs must factor in labour, taxes, electricity, materials etc.
Finland has an economic and competitive human resource base compared to many other innovation hubs. Due to its advanced energy sector with a large percent of it being drawn from renewable energy – the cost of electricity in Finland is comparatively low.
Corporate tax is also very low for companies – at only 20%. The government also financially incentivizes firms set up in Finland through various R&D funding authorities and grants. All these factors together make Finland an economically viable location for Indian firms.
Innovation is the key to success for ICT firms and Indian firms especially need a solid innovation ecosystem in which they can develop their R&D and get the latest and best in technology.
Finland is a highly sophisticated and future-ready centre for the development of disruptive and innovative products. Finland has a business ecosystem with a deeply entrenched culture of collaboration and cooperation. Suppliers, universities, government agencies, power supply lines and other infrastructural facilities all work seamlessly together to create a hotspot in which Indian ICT firms can thrive to their fullest potential and take their business and product to a world-class level.
Indian firms that incorporate in Finland are treated as equally as local firms. Once part of the Finnish business system, an Indian firm gets full access to all possible aid from the ecosystem and the government.
There are several government agencies that offer support in all facets of operating a business. Authorities like ‘Invest in Finland’, ‘Business Finland’, ‘Helsinki Business Hub’ and PrEver and many more walk Indian companies through from market research to establishing their business and some services are even for free!
ELY helps with recuirtment and training, VTT, Tekes, Sitra and many more offer funding, loans, networking and more. Finland is the 3rd least corrupt country in the world and Indian firms enjoy high transparency and no bureacracy in Finland.
Firms can do a market study with PrEver to find out the potential for marketing their products in Finland. Given that Finland is a tech hub, there is wide scope for Indians to find a market in Finland.
Besides which, Finland is well connected to other European countries and cities and Finnair in Helsinki offers the fastest flights between the East and the West. Along with the local population’s skills and experience in multi-cultural and international business Finland is a powerful location from which to find a customer base for ICT firms.
Legal Structure and Regulatory Climate
Finland is the 3rd most transparent and 3rd least corrupt country in the world. Setting up a business in Finland is a quick and relatively easy process which takes only about 2 weeks to get done.
Finland is the most stable country in the world and offers excellent and reliable intellectual protection rights for individuals and businesses. Indian firms can rely on stable laws and regulations to protect them and can do no better than to establish themselves in Finland if they are seeking security and stability.
Support and advice for ICT small businesses in India
When it comes to the best location for a firm to go international, for ICT SMEs in India Finland is the best choice because it offers the best solutions and protection for a firm and helps the firm super-charge their growth to the next level.
Indian ICT SMEs need to seriously consider Finland as a location choice for global expansion. They can get in-depth and reliable help for market research, proceedural guidance, networking and more from PrEver Consulting, which is partnered with several Finnish agencies to help your global expansion experience happen with ease.
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