Cultural Gateway Finland offers turnkeyservices for international liveentertainment productions to ensuresuccessful entry from Europe to Chinaand from China to Europe. With the helpof Finpro, Cultural Gateway Finlandsigned the historical first theatremanagement joint venture between Chinaand foreign company and manages nowShanghai Daning theatre together withthe Chinese Partner.Finpro has been a significant partof the cooperation during whichwe have managed to sign thehistorical first theatremanagement joint venturebetween China and foreigncompany.The greatest benefit for us hasbeen the top expertise of the localFinpro consultant who has givenus concrete help in thenegotiations by clarifying thecultural aspects and thesuccessful way to establishcontract.Johan Storgård, CEO, CulturalGateway Finland
Founded in 2012, Cultural Gateway Finland (CGF) is a joint company managedby four Finnish companies: ACE-Production, PES Architects, Pluto Finland andBif Advisors. Cultural Gateway Finland owns service brand Center Stage Chinathough which it offers turnkey services for international live entertainmentproductions to ensure successful entry from Europe to China and from China toEurope. The business areas include venue and network management, local andstate governmental permits, production logistics, technical support, copyrightmanagement, production management, public relations, marketing andproduction sponsorship, conference and corporate event management.Rapidly growing mid-class’ demand for international standard performing artsand entertainment is rocketing in China. Official China is opening borders forinternational productions as culture businesses are in focus of the new five-yearplan. Hundreds of state-of-the art venues built during the construction boomneed high-quality content to drive the capacity utilization rate higher. However,there are lots of rocks on the road which need to be removed such as the lack ofinternational production quality skills in China, language problems in all levelsfrom content adaptation to contacts to authorities, difficulties in navigatingthrough the hierarchical bureaucracy, permit procedures and heavybureaucracy, which causes unpredictability and makes long-term planningchallenging. Access to venues negotiated individually is time consuming,Marketing and sales efforts by local operators and venues is often insufficient.
The cooperation between Finpro and ACE-Production started in Luovimo 1program and continued later in Luovimo 2 with Cultural Gateway Finland.Together with Finpro PES-Architects (theatre design) and ACE-Production(theatre management) composed a joint offering with common marketingmaterial. Finpro helped Cultural Gateway Finland in partner search in China andsupported company in the negotiations with potential partners and in jointventure business license process. With the help of Finpro, Cultural GatewayFinland launched its services in London in November 2012, created a largecustomer database consisting theatre producers in Europe and carried out aroadshow in German speaking Europe during which company met potentialcustomers.Cultural Gateway Finland signed a historical first theatre management jointventure between China and foreign company and manages now ShanghaiDaning theatre together with the Chinese partner. The theatre has own stagewith 1 115 seats and western standard venue management and productionsupport. Joint venture partner CPAA Entertainment Shanghai Ltd. is part of theChina Arts and Entertainment Group (CAEG). As a result Cultural GatewayFinland has access to CAEG network with 34 theatres in China. The launchevent for Center Stage China was held in London and Cultural Gateway Finlandgot also high quality media coverage in the Stage Magazine and in theIndependent. Now Cultural Gateway Finland has a customer database with morethan 200 contacts who are interested in the offered opportunity in China.Negotiations with more than 20 producers in Europe to bring productions toChina are ongoing.
Jalo Helsinki is a born globalcompany, which specializes inproducing, developing anddesigning fire safety devices.Finpro carried out test drives forJalo Helsinki in France andGermany.We were very satisfied especiallyon the test drive assignmentcarried out in France. It openedour eyes about the size and thepotentiality of the market. Wefound a French distributor from thetest drive assignment and havenow recruited a French speakingemployee.From the test drive assignment inGermany we found out that themarkets required an additionalcertification, which we are at themoment acquiring. This was themost important finding related toGerman test drive.Miika Perä, Co-Founder, Jalo Helsinki
Jalo Helsinki is a born global company established in 2009 andlocated in Espoo. Jalo specializes in producing, developing anddesigning of fire safety devices. The company has developedthe worlds most stylish and functional smoke alarms Kupu andLento, designed by Harri Koskinen and Paola Suhonen.Jalo Helsinki decided to start their internationalization in 2010with the support of Finpro. Company’s target was to researchmarkets and to find suitable distributors from the German andFrench markets.
Finpro carried out test drives for Jalo in Germany and inFrance. During the test drives the right customer segments anddistribution channels were identified and the company’s productwas tested with few different distributors. As part of the testdrives, Finpro also researched the required fire safetycertifications in both countries. It was very important for Jalo tofind out that in the German markets fire safety devices shouldhave an additional certification.From the test drives carried out by Finpro, Jalo has gainedinformation about the markets, their development trends andfound valuable business leads. The market information hasmade it easier for Jalo to allocate its resources to the mostpotential areas within the markets. At the moment Jalo hasdistributors in both France and Germany, the former one foundduring test drive assignment. Jalo has also recruited a Frenchspeaking employee.
Finpro carried out partner searchesand sales channel development forVM-Carpet. Partners are now found inDenmark, Sweden and South-Korea.In Japan the existent contacts havebeen deepened and the company hasgot more information about how tooperate in the market.We have got lots of moreinformation and understanding ofmarket operations and marketstructures within our industry. Wehave also got new contacts andcooperation partners. As a result,we really have accurate andconcrete information, not justfeeling that we might knowsomething.When we were visiting South-Korea and Japan we had a Finproexpert with us, which made ourvisits easier. She gave commentsafter client meetings and made iteasier for us to understand theculture.Maria Hanhisalo, Managing Director,VM-Carpet
VM-Carpet is an innovative carpet manufacturer, which offershigh quality carpets for different furnishings. The company wasfounded in Lappajärvi in 1973. VM-Carpet´s carpets and rugsare sold in specialized carpet stores, department stores andfurniture and decoration shops. Today VM-Carpet’s productsare exported and distributed in more than 20 countries.The boom for shaggy carpets had a downturn at the end of2000s. To ensure the continuous growth after downturn ondomestic markets, VM-Carpet wanted to find new marketsabroad and develop their international business model. Thecompany decided to contact Finpro.
First Finpro studied market potential and sales channels for VM-Carpet in Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Japan. Next step was tosearch partners in Sweden, Norway and Denmark. In Japan thechallenge was to strengthen existent sales channels. VM-Carpetparticipated in Foresight project. There the target was to discovernew product and service ideas and to find new operation models.VM-Carpet took also part in Leaping Tiger Export Program (Asia).During the program Finpro carried out business opportunity check inSouth Korea and organized meetings in Japan, China and South-Korea .VM-Carpet has found partners in Denmark, Sweden and South-Korea. In Japan the existent partnership has been deepenedand VM-Carpet has got knowledge about how to operate in themarket. From Finpro Foresight project VM-Carpet got newpractical ideas, which are now used in company’s research anddevelopment.