FBC Golf Championships - 8th Edition

On the 7th of December happy golfers consisting of FBC members and friends gathered at the Els club in Dubai to compete for the title of FBC golf champion of 2018. The lucky winner in the stroke play category was Jari Ruuska with a score of 78 strokes. In the stableford category Tero Kilpelä had the best result with 40 points.

Anne Sahlström won the longest drive for women and Jari Puurtinen won both longest drive in the men’s category, as well as closest to pin. The team competition was won by Jari Puurtinen, Arno Pelkonen, Pentti Korjonen and Tero Kilpelä.

In addition, to honor Finland’s centenary, last year we created a new category symbolized in a blue and white lion head-cover that was passed on to the next deserving golfer, who demonstrated relentless, un-waivered go get –spirit and sisu despite many obstacles on the way, as did Finland a hundred years ago. Peter Söderman and Tuula Fellman are proud winners of the Sisu – Suomi 100 -trophy.  The prize ceremony was held at the FBC Christmas party which took place following the golf tournament at the Els club. Congratulations to all the winners and many thanks to the ELS club for supporting the event and prizes such as golf and f&b vouchers.

 Dressed in blue and white the competitors ready to hit the greens!

Dressed in blue and white the competitors ready to hit the greens!

Season kick of with the first Nordic Sundowner

On Wednesday 26th of September, more than 80 members from the Nordic Business community gathered at Molecule restaurant in 3D for the season's first Nordic Sundowner.

The evening started by HE Riitta Swan, Ambassador of Finland to UAE, by announcing the Finland's participation to EXPO 2020, Dubai. This is great news for all the companies already operating here in UAE to aid with their tendering processes towards expo related projects. Also this is an excellent timing for others to plan their market entry to UAE. 

Ambassador welcomed lovely Pirjo- Liisa Heikkilä to join the UAE Deputy Head of Mission.  Also sadly we had to say Good- Bye to Business Finland representative Mr. Jukka Hahlanterä, Jukka has reached the “mans” age and will enjoy his retirement in Finland. However the good- byes are not final, since he will be still involve with UAE business climate.

The evening followed by a presentation by the biggest Blockchain/Crypto Community in the Middle East. They have been working 2 years to increase awareness regarding this disruptive technology as well as helping start-ups to get exposure to this market while tokenising the community and doing a CTO (community token offering).Gamifying, really is the future as Nordic community also showed on the night. At the end of the event, there was a interactive game, where winners received Bitcoins. To read more about Planet blockchain, please visithttps://planetblockchain.io

 We can not wait to collaborate with other Business Councils around the Emirates to provide our members the events, that are only great place to network, but also to have topics matching with current issues in UAE and in the region.


Yours Sincerely,

Ms. Katja Boutou

Chairman for the Finnish Business Council.



Peikko Group started using revised management systems according to ISO standards among the first companies

Peikko Group has started to use revised ISO 9001:2015 (quality) and ISO 14001:2015 (environment) management system standards. The structure of the revised standards has changed to better support business and leadership. The revision of the quality management system accentuates quality orientated business as a whole. The revision of the environment management system corresponds to the needs of standard users, to increasing environmental challenges, and to social expectations. 

Certification body DNV GL performed audits at Peikko’s production units during autumn 2016. Peikko was among the first companies to take the revised standards into use. Peikko Group’s production units in China, Finland, Germany, Lithuania, Slovakia, and the United Arab Emirates are now within EN ISO 9001:2015 and EN ISO 14001:2015 multi-site certification. The Russian production unit is included in the revised multi-site certificate with regard to quality certification, and the environmental certification will be carried out during this year. 

Work safety (OHSAS 18001:2007) and welding (ISO 3834-2:2005) certifications are an integral part of Peikko’s multi-site certification. Welding is one of Peikko’s main production processes, and work safety is a one of group wide main focus areas. All management system certificates can be found on Peikko Group’s website at www.peikko.com/QES

”The certification proves that Peikko Group takes better into consideration the needs and expectations of customers and other stakeholder groups with regard to high quality. Our annual process-specific continuous improvement action plans base on together evaluated risks and possibilities for further improvement our operations and product quality in order to guarantee better customer satisfaction”, states Topi Paananen, CEO of Peikko Group Corporation.


Team Finland Day

I was honored to be part of the Team Finland Day 2018 held in Helsinki on Thursday August 30th 2018, representing Middle- East countries together with Ambassadors Ms. Riitta Swan, UAE and Mr. Pekka Voutilainen, KSA, and Business Finland representative Mr. Jukka Hahlanterä, UAE.

Team Finland day is targeted to all Finnish SMEs looking to go global. It is a unique event, where one can meet Team Finland network experts from over 90 different countries, all under one roof. Whether it is about, growth accelerating services, funding options or just about networking, there is definitely something for everybody.

Team Finland is an integral part of Finnish SMEs' internationalization process. Together with government entities, they are able to open doors for businesses, that an individual would not be able to do. As part of their services, they are able to asses, if/when the company is ready to enter certain markets and give individual advice for the same.

The day was filled with several informative speeches, presentations and activities, that many wished this was a 2-days event. That way it would be possible to participate to all the informative workshops and presentations, rather than just choosing one event in each time category.

One of these activities were specially popular: “country/topic specific speed dating event” which gave participants a 15 minutes time-slot to discuss with those, who are immensely experienced in their fields, whether an Ambassador of a specific country, FinnCham representative or a Business Finland specialist. This gave an excellent platform for participants to network with correct focus groups.

Being in the same space with 850 persons from around the world, sharing global ideas and networking with immensely experienced individuals was an experience already by itself. Personally, I enjoyed the atmosphere and energy of the event and cannot wait to attend similar events in the near future again in Finland or abroad.

For more information about Team Finland, their activities and events can be found on  https://team.finland.fi/en/frontpage  

Till Next Year!

Katja Boutou

Chairman of Finnish Business Council UAE

Team Finland Päivä .jpeg

Finncham Annual Meeting

As a first timer to this meeting, I was quite not sure what to expect, who will be there and what would be the outcome. These thoughts were met with all around positiveness among professionals wanting to achieve results.

The meeting was held end of August in Helsinki. Throughout the day the following three points became the focused topics of the meeting:

1.    The Finncham network is an extensive and reliable trade promotion platform including 35 accredited Finnish Chambers of Commerce around the world.

Last year The Finland Chamber of Commerce has created an accreditation system, that outlines minimum requirements to be a Business Council. 85 Business Councils were ranked and 35 met the requirements, I am happy to report that the UAE is among them. The ranking was established to provide more quality and consistency, which will then transfer into collaborations with government and private entities. This way also other business councils can confidently leverage on each others' networks.

2.  The purpose of the Finncham network is to support Finnish enterprises in starting to do business internationally.

This was a well discussed topic to better understand who are we, what we do, and how we do it. To be able to answer these questions, business councils globally have been asked to draft a 5- year plan. This would enable the chamber in Helsinki to understand better the local and regional differences and challenges, and also the aspirations of each council. This can then be translated into a one main plan, that can be incorporated with government entities.

3.  The Finland Chamber of Commerce coordinates the Finncham network in cooperation with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Finland, Business Finland, and the regional Chambers of Commerce across Finland.

Rather than compete, the objective is to complement one another. Understanding better how these government institutions are there to “serve the companies in their internationalization quest”, also gave more idea “how to accelerate global export” from FBC point. FBC's role is to provide networking opportunities for those Finnish companies, that are interested in, coming or already in the region to grow further their presence and businesses alike. FBC could also draw “Expert Search Data Base” from their members and promote them for the companies looking for advisory in specific sectors.

More information about Finncham please log on https://kauppakamari.fi/en/ 

Katja Boutou, Chairman of Finnish Business Council UAE

Finncham meeting .jpeg

Matkaoppaasta Business naiseksi - Anita Kalergis luotsaa Finnish Business Councelia

Teksti: Tiina Kontra

Tammikuussa Dubain Lakesissa pelattiin mölkkyä. Koko perheelle tarkoitetut mölkynpeluuharjoitukset olivat lajissaan ensimmäiset ja suksee oli suuri.

Tapahtuman järjesti Finnish Business Council. Yksi tapahtuman taustavaikuttajista on puheenjohtaja Anita Kalergis.

Mölkyn tietävät kaikki, mutta mikä on Finnish Business Council?

–Finnish Business Council eli FBC toimii siltana Suomen ja Yhdistyneiden Arabiemiraattien välillä. Palvelemme maassa toimivia suomalaisia yrityksiä, yrittäjiä ja työssäkäyviä yksityishenkilöitä sekä maahan pyrkiviä suomalaisia yrityksiä, Anita Kalergis tiivistää. FBC:n tarkoituksena on välittää tietoa, auttaa maahan etabloitumisessa sekä tukea vientiä. –Ja yleisesti ottaen ylläpitää Suomi-kuvaa.

Anita Kalergis liittyi FBC:n toimintaan mukaan vuosi sitten. –Kokemus on ollut hyvin mielenkiintoinen ja innoittava. Meillä on kasassa hieno porukka, osaamista monelta eri alalta ja tuntemusta maasta, Kalergis iloitsee.

Hän on asunut ulkomailla jo vuosia. –Lähdin aikoinani matkaoppaaksi. Kreikassa rakastuin, menin naimisiin ja sain kaksi tytärtä. Meillä oli mieheni kanssa oma yritys, valmistimme ja myimme rakennustarvikkeita. 13 vuoden jälkeen palasin takaisin Suomeen perheyrityksen, erikoispainotalon palvelukseen. Myöhemmin siirryin töihin amerikkalaiseen terveysteknologiayritykseen ja vastasin muun muassa diabetes-tarvikkeiden myynnistä.

Kolmisen vuotta sitten Anita Kalergis muutti Arabiemiraatteihin –Toimin ensin business-konsulttina Broadfolio-nimisessä yrityksessä ja sittemmin myyntipäällikönä Grandlundin palveluksessa. Suomalainen Granlund tuo maahan IT-ratkaisua, joka auttaa säästämään rakennusten energiakustannuksissa, kertoo Kalergis.

Mitä kauemmin maailmalla pyörii, sitä hienompaan arvoon Suomi ja suomalaiset asiat nousevat.–Jokainen maa, jossa olen asunut, on nyt tavallaan osa minua. –Kun asuimme Kreikassa, tyttäreni kävivät paikallista Suomi-koulua. Koulu oli todella tärkeä tyttöjen suomen kielen kannalta. He pääsivät leikkimään ja laulamaan suomalaisia leikkejä ja juhlimaan suomalaisia juhlia. Suomi-koulu oli myös minulle tärkeä paikka tavata ”suomalaisia siskoja” ja jakaa ulkomailla asumisen iloja ja suruja heidän kanssaan. Voin siis sanoa, että Suomi-koulussa tehdään tärkeää työtä monellakin tavalla!


Finnish Business Council

Tällä hetkellä n. 30 yritysjäsentä, joista suurin osa on maassa toimivia suomalaisyrityksiä, sekä n. 60 henkilöjäsentä.

Toimintaa pyöritetään vapaaehtoispohjalta.

Toimii Dubai Chamberin alaisuudessa, ja tekee yhteistyötä Suomen keskuskauppakamarin kanssa. Muiden Pohjoismaiden business councilien kanssa järjestetään kerran kuussa mm. sun downer –verkostoitumistilaisuuksia.

Yksi tärkeimmistä tehtävistä on vahvistaa ulkoministeriön/suurlähetystön, Business Finlandin (entinen FinPro) ja FBC:n välistä yhteistyötä sekä välittää tietoa verkostolle ja jäsenistölle; esimerkiksi informoida jäseniä messutapahtumista, yritysdelegaatioista sekä välittää kutsuja jäsenille hyödyllisiin tapahtumiin.

Joulukuussa FBC järjesti suurlähetystön kanssa yhdessä Suomi 100 –juhlat ja helmikuussa keskustelutilaisuuden, jossa päävieraana oli Alexander Stubb.

Jos kiinnostuit FBC:n toiminnasta, ota yhteys admin@fbcuae.fi


FBC Mölkky Championships Practise

On January 27th a bunch of happy Mölkky players gathered at the Lakes Park to practise their skills. 8 teams participated, with 3-5 players/team. 24 games were played in total and the Pentti family had the best team score with a total win of 5 matches, well done!

Next time we play we will kick of the Mölkky Championships 2018. If your company would like to sign up with a team, please let us know at admin@fbcuae.fi.


New solutions-faster, safer and more efficient way to design and build

Peikko Group Corporation is a leading global supplier of concrete connections and composite structures. Peikko’s innovative solutions make customers’ building processes faster, easier, and more reliable. Peikko has subsidiaries in 30 countries in Asia-Pacific, Europe, the Middle East, and North America, with manufacturing operations in 9 countries. Peikko’s turnover in 2016 was EUR 173 million. Peikko is a family-owned and run company that employs over 1,500 professionals. Peikko was founded in 1965 and is headquartered in Lahti, Finland.

In the Middle East Peikko has been represented since 2008 by two companies, Al Rashed Peikko LLC and Peikko Gulf LLC. Al Rashed Peikko LLC is a sales office and a joint venture formed by Peikko Group and Rashed Abdul Rahman Al Rashed & Sons Group, and located in Dammam, Saudi Arabia. Peikko Gulf LLC is a sales and production unit located in Ras al Khaimah, the United Arab Emirates. 

Radovan Endel, General Manager of Peikko Gulf LLC, and Antti Rousku, General Manager of Al Rashed Peikko LLC, tell about Peikko’s solutions and scope in the Middle East.

What can Peikko bring to the Middle East market?

Radovan Endel: “Peikko can offer a different construction method that leads to safer, faster and more efficient way of building. This, ultimately, brings both time- and cost-savings to the customer. Our solutions and technical support also bring more freedom to designers and architects.”

Antti Rousku: “Peikko’s products and solutions are pre-engineered and tested, and the design is made locally and adapted to the Middle East market.”

What are the most important products in this market? Why?

RE: “I would rather speak about solutions than products – we are helping the customer solve his construction-related problems; not just selling items. Our pre-engineered precast solutions, such as column shoes and DELTABEAM® Composite Beams answer to the requirements created by the pressure to save time. For cast-in-situ construction we offer our punching reinforcement solutions; a technology and way of building not yet well-known in the Middle East. All our solutions are manufactured in-house.”

AR: “For precast construction our bolted connections play an important role; both column-to-column and beam-to-column. The use of precast construction is increasing, and our solutions are further improving it, especially in terms of speed and safety. Our punching reinforcement solution is new in the Middle East, and intended for cast-in-situ construction. Designers have been needing an application of this kind in the market.”

How can a construction company benefit from Peikko?

RE: “We can offer full support for a complete project from start to finish. We are also able to grow within the company and project, and work in a partnership. We can stay within the project’s budget limits without sacrificing the quality of our products.”

AR: “On-site work becomes faster because of easy installation combined with fast connections. This makes the on-site work safer and also requires less labour. Our solutions are also predesigned and tested.”

How do Peikko’s solutions ease the work of architects and structural designers?

RE: “Predesigned items do not require “re-inventing the wheel”, so the design phase is faster. Peikko’s own software Peikko Designer® makes the entire process even easier.”

AR: “Our solutions offer more possibilities to design flexible buildings – in terms of usage and also architectural shapes.”

What can Peikko offer for investors?

RE: “We offer flexible solutions – the use of a building during its lifecycle can be changed without remarkable effort.”

AR: “We can help investors by reducing the cost of the project and bringing more revenue out of it. The faster the project is finished, the sooner it starts to bring profit. In addition to time-savings during the construction stage, our solutions are also able to reduce the total cost of the project.” 

Where is Peikko’s focus in the Middle East in the coming 5 or 10 years?

RE: “Peikko’s target is not the size of the company, but instead being a reliable and flexible partner in the market, always listening to the market and customer needs. Product development is an ongoing process. Peikko is – and will be – a group of successful people working for successful customers.”

AR: “The market in the Middle East is growing and continuously adopting new ways of building. Peikko will be – and already is – a forerunner in bringing in new solutions and applications used in the future way of building.”

In Peikko we often speak about Peikko Spirit, which is something that all Peikko’s units worldwide share. How would you define Peikko Spirit?

RE: “Peikko Spirit is in my opinion a specific atmosphere of personal engagement – it is a good team spirit that brings added value to the company and our customers.”

AR: “Peikko Spirit is a cross-border team spirit that includes everybody supporting each other, regardless of their position in the company. It is also about having the best possible knowledge where it is needed – this requires collaboration, teamwork and low hierarchical structure.” Further information: www.peikko.ae

Radovan Endel is responsible for Peikko’s operations in the United Arab Emirates. He has been working with Peikko since 2009. At Peikko, Radovan has held various manufacturing-related positions (Production Manager, Operations Manager) in Slovakia and United Arab Emirates. Prior to joining Peikko, Radovan has held a variety of technical and leadership roles in manufacturing field and electromechanical business. He has studied Engineering and Technology and graduated with dual degree in Business Administration.

Antti Rousku is responsible for Peikko’s operations in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. He joined Peikko in 2012, and has held various sales-related positions (Sales Manager, Business Manager, Sales Director) in Finland and Saudi Arabia. Before his career at Peikko, Antti had several years of experience in sales of construction materials in various companies. He has successfully been operating on project sales, consumer and business-to-business sales.

Peikko kuva.jpg

Thank you for celebrating Suomi Finland 100 years with us!

Dear FBC Members and Stakeholders,

Kiitos-Tack-Thank you-Shukran!

On Thursday, 7th of December 2017 in the Polo and Equestrian Club in Dubai we celebrated our beloved home country’s centennial together with 500 Finns and friends of Finland.

It doesn’t matter how well or nicely you prepare a party, the outcome is a result of the people and the spirit of the people. Last week we had an amazing and great party, thanks to all of you who participated in one way or another. The celebration was dignified but fun and everyone seemed to enjoy themselves and that it exactly how we wanted it to be.

Our sincere thanks goes once more to all our sponsors who made it possible! 

The Finnish Business Council wants to thank you all for the past year and wish you Happy Holidays and a successful New Year 2018!

Best Regards,

Anita Kalergis


Finland 100 years - Wärtsilä is an official partner

On December 6th this year Finland will turn 100, and Wärtsilä is celebrating Finland’s birthday by participating as an official partner of the centennial programme.

The centenary of Finland’s independence in 2017 is the most significant commemorative year for the current generation of Finns. The centenary emphasises Finland’s strengths, such as equality and democracy, by offering Finns and friends of Finland a diverse and international centenary programme - both in Finland and abroad. The centenary year provides opportunities to better understand the past, experience the jubilee together, and set the course for Finland’s future success.

The theme of Finland’s centenary celebration year is ‘Together’. The organisation of the ‘Finland 100 Years’ project was established by the Prime Minister’s Office, and has responsibility for organising the official centenary year events.

Wärtsilä supports innovation by donating to research

Wärtsilä donates a total of EUR 1,300,000 to Finnish universities as a ‘gift’ for Finland in 2017. With this donation Wärtsilä intends to demonstrate its support for Finnish technology education, and in this way participate in promoting research in Finnish universities and strengthening Finland's global competitiveness.

Wärtsilä’s superior technological solutions are internationally recognised, but remain little known to the broader Finnish public. So in this special year, with our Finland 100 themes and actions, we will tell the Finns – and our global audience –about Wärtsilä’s long and successful history in developing Finland’s technology sector.

Future of the Seas

Wärtsilä has a proud heritage in Finland, with more than 180 years of experience. We have a wide range of operations here, and we have always been a pioneer in technology. At the core of our operations lies a continuous desire to improve, a passion to tackle new technical challenges, and an ability to look forward. We adapt to the changed needs of the surrounding world and collaborate in close cooperation with our sub-contractors, customers, and other partners. We develop our operations and products in line with sustainable development. Wärtsilä’s Finland 100 theme is the ‘Future of the Seas’, which combines all our key priorities: technology, environment and digitalisation. Our main message is that Wärtsilä leverages technology and digitalisation to help ensure a cleaner and more sustainable future for the seas of the world.

Through our Finland 100 themes and projects we want to highlight Wärtsilä’s image as a leading modern technology company, and try to change the larger public’s perception of the company as merely a traditional engine manufacturer. The objective is also to gain visibility and to improve brand awareness among a broader Finnish and global audience, and with potential employees and collaborators. We would also like to reflect on how Wärtsilä has grown and developed along with its homeland, surviving war, economic turmoil, and political crisis and overcoming financial and geographic obstacles.

Wärtsilä’s Finland 100 themes and examples: 


Wärtsilä leads the way in gas and dual-fuel engine technology and in engine maintenance, particularly in promoting efficiency, fuel flexibility, and the reduction of environmental impacts. Our technology innovations are exemplified by such successes as the Wärtsilä 31 engine, LNG terminals and engines, and our hybrid and solar power plants. We also support the Vaasa Energy Business Innovation Centre (VEBIC).

Wärtsilä has used digital technology for many years in the remote monitoring of ship or plant engines, and in the optimisation and planning of operations. Wärtsilä envisages the future of shipping, and is deeply involved in the development of the world’s first system of autonomous ships for the Baltic Sea.

Product development at Wärtsilä is guided by energy efficiency and environmental values. Wärtsilä supplies technologies that reduce exhaust gas emissions and waste (including LNG engines, scrubbers and catalyst systems, and solutions for the treatment of ballast water, wastewater and dry waste).

Written by: Anne Manner