Finnish Business Angel Network (FiBAN) annually awards the Finnish Business Angel of the Year – a person who has made valuable investments and supported the startup ecosystem. The selection is based on suggestions made to FiBAN Board. “This year the award goes to a person who is exceptionally determined and straightforward in his work and who has plenty of experience in internationalization.” explains Torsti Tenhunen, Chairman of the Board. The glorious award was given at Finnish Business Angel Day on 21st November.
As many angel investors, Väisänen has an entrepreneurial background and mindset. “I was an entrepreneur for a fairly long time and then I sold my company to the London Stock Exchange for about 60 million euros. After that, I had a bit of money and plenty of free time.” he explains. Väisänen describes his approach to angel investing as a co-entrepreneur. “I put a bit of my time, effort and money and we try to make things greater, bigger and better – together.”
Väisänen emphasizes the valuable knowledge and experience that angel investors can bring to growth companies. “Most of the business angels have done it already. You can learn so much from the people who have made all the mistakes that you are about to make. Don’t take just money – take also wisdom, knowledge, experiences and all the advices you will get when taking a business angel on board.”
“I have always said that if you have been successful you have to share it and help the other people.” says Väisänen who has invested in about 20 companies in different fields. One of his portfolio companies is Framery that has grown fast and won the Internationalization Award of the President of the Republic of Finland.
Väisänen sees business angels having a crucial role also in the future and co-investing as an increasing trend. “I think it will be more co-investing than investing on your own – as FiBAN and its Nordic side (NordicBAN) shows. I think it’s an international trend.” FiBAN’s network of over 630 approved investor members connect business angels together and facilitates syndicates or co-investing. Nordic Business Angels Network (NordicBAN) is linking over 10 Nordic & Baltic angel networks and supporting cross-border angel investments.
Watch Kim Väisänen’s video greetings to hear his tips for angel investing, and thoughts about the development of startup culture and the role of angel investors!
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