Services for creative industries
Creative Business Incubator Creve is renewing in September and will then also provide help to other than new enterprises. The incubator activities will turn into a business accelerator that will offer help in the goal-oriented development of companies.
Master of Arts Leena Janhila started as the Incubator Manager at Creative Business Incubator Creve in the RDI organisation of the Humak University of Applied Sciences in February. She is clearly enthusiastic about her job, because the current form of the incubator will soon evolve into something new. In the future, Creve’s services will no longer be directed exclusively at new enterprises, but they will also be available to companies that have operated for a few years and have their own development projects.
SparkUp speeds up the development of enterprises
Creve is also part of the SparkUp concept that was set up last year to compile together the services for new entrepreneurs. The one-stop shop service concept will get new premises in ElectroCity in the autumn. In addition to Creve, the SparkUp activities are run by Turku Science Park Ltd and student network Boost Turku. Other partners are the City of Turku, the University of Turku, Åbo Akademi University, Turku University of Applied Sciences, Turku Region Development Centre, and Turku Technology Properties Group. SparkUp is part of the renewal of the enterprise services of the Turku Region and the City of Turku, which was agreed on in the innovation agreement between the City, Turku Science Park, University of Turku and Turku University of Applied Sciences last year.
Personal sparring partner and international mentors
”Creve has operated for nearly seven years, and some of the methods have become obsolete. We will start completely revamped activities at the beginning of September and pilot the new model with companies during the autumn. In the future, entrepreneurs will participate in Creve through development projects that last from a few months to two years. The development items may be related to e.g. starting the operations, or development of sales, management or services. The companies need not be newly established, and the same entrepreneur can participate in several projects in a row”, Ms Janhila says.
Entrepreneurs are offered paid assistance in project management, and they will have a personal sparring partner throughout the project who will motivate and help them in reaching the monthly goals to be agreed on together. Incubator support will no longer be granted, but the entrepreneurs can get help in arranging funding. In addition, they can consult an advisory group comprised of successful entrepreneurs in creative and traditional industries, and an international network of mentors. There are plans to offer working space in both Turku and Helsinki through a network of premises. Through SparkUp, new entrepreneurs have access to Creve’s free of charge advice, entrepreneur training and community services.
Money is not a dirty word
”New entrepreneurs have to get a grip of sales and customer needs at a very early stage and understand that entrepreneurship is the ultimate service profession. The rhythm of entrepreneurship and the way of looking at creativity through profitability may come as a surprise, and entrepreneurship is not necessarily the right solution for implementing your own ideas. In creative industries the entrepreneurs often have to balance between profitability and the realisation of their dreams. Reaching the goals calls for persistence”, Ms Janhila says.
Her work in Creve involves managing enthusiasm, and she wants it to be human-oriented. Co-operation opportunities are sought between traditional and creative industries, because they could learn a great deal from each other.
”People in traditional industries are now talking about the things that creative industries took up already at the turn of the millennium. Traditional industries could get deeper, for example, by developing their services using methods of the creative industries. On the other hand, creative businesses are always in touch with the future and could get along with a little less, because sometimes there’s a risk that they aim too far and the time is not yet ripe for the product. Creative industries can also learn from traditional companies an attitude towards sales and money in order to move on”, Ms Janhila ponders.
Creativity and business fit together
In addition to creative industries, Leena Janhila has always been interested in business and has studied for example design management. She first studied clothing design and marketing in the Jyväskylä University of Applied Sciences and graduated as a Master of Arts in Rovaniemi. She started her career there at product development of tourism experiences, and learned about entrepreneurship by setting up her own design business. In recent years, she has mainly worked at business development, which has involved coaching in the development of customer experience, branding of services, and digital marketing. At the back of a store room she has a big pile of materials comprising of her own creative work.
After eight years in working life, Ms Janhila moved to Turku and complemented her studies in the TSE Exe Business Academy. She also worked as a business consultant, which she thinks taught her great deal.
In three years, Turku has become her beloved hometown.
“I like to spend time at the seaside and Turku is just right-sized town. All important places can be reached in ten minutes. I live with my 6-year-old son Johannes in the city-centre, and the day care, shops and my workplace are all near. You can take a bus to go picking wild mushrooms. We often cycle and go camping and did a one-week cycling trip to Åland. Our other hobbies include swimming and diving”, Leena Janhila says.
Text and photos: Anne Kortela
- Born in 1976 in Hamina, lives in Turku
- Incubator Manager at Creative Business Incubator Creve in Humak University of Applied Sciences
2008 Master of Arts, University of Lapland, Rovaniemi
2003 Bachelor of Arts (Clothing Design),Jyväskylä University of Applied Sciences, Jyväskylä
1998 Artisan, Arts and Crafts Institute of Central Finland, Petäjävesi
2013 TSE Exe Business Academy
2/2015– Incubator Manager, Creative Business Incubator Creve, Humak
1/2014–12/2014 Development Manager, Stara Consulting Group Oy, Salo
1/2013–6/2013 Project work, TSE Exe/Logomo Oy, Logomo Byrå concept development
4/2011-6/2012 Coordinator, Creative Industries, Rovaniemen Kehitys Oy
3/2010-3/2011 Business Developer, Creative Industries, Rovaniemen Kehitys Oy
8/2007–12/2010 Project Manager, ICT/Health/ Creative Industries, Rovaniemen Kehitys Oy
2008–2009 Entrepreneur, Black Pencil Design, Rovaniemi
2005–2007 Project Planner, Lapin Elämystuotanto Oy
6-year-old son Johannes
cycling, camping, swimming, gardening.