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Women entrepreneurs visiting Stora Nolia exhibition in Umeå

29 august 2013

Participation in Stora Nolia-2013 became the closing event of the project “Women entrepreneurship from West to East”. Almost all of the project participants, who earlier presented their business plans, expressed an intention to take part in the program of business contacts in the framework of Stora Nolia-2013. Exhibition stand of the Karelian companies, representing cities of Petrozavodsk, Olonets and Kondopoga, was designed in cooperation with ladies working in arts and crafts business and experienced top managers of local companies – such as “Yarmarka” trading house, “Ozon” Ltd, “TeaCoffee” teashop, who also joined the Karelian business delegation.

Alike with previous years the agenda of the business visits was prepared by Västerbotten Chamber of Trade and Commerce basing on participants’ wishes and areas of activity.   The first two days of exhibition’s work (Saturday and Sunday) participants devoted to acquaintance with Swedish and partly Finnish companies presented at the exhibition. Throughout nine working days the Stora Nolia  exhibition was attended by some 98000 visitors (which is actually less compared to previous exhibitions – 120 thousand in 2009 and 130 thousand in 2007). According to the organizers, weather conditions matter a lot, but it is also quite evident that the proposed format of the exhibition has outlived its usefulness: there exist more innovative methods of promoting goods and services. And yet exhibitions will remain a meeting ground for establishing new business contacts.

The program of the business contacts, elaborated by Västerbotten Chamber of Trade and Commerce took place during August 5 to 7 and consisted of visits with Swedish companies at meetings at the exhibition, covering the following directions of activity:

- catering;

- tourism and leisure activities;

- exclusive food retail;

- promotion of collection clothing;

- photo services;

- cleaning services;

- arts and crafts, promotion of local masters.

In addition to this, leaders of some companies, engaged in organization of large-scale events, requested a meeting with organizers of the Stora Nolia exhibition.

According to the feedback from the participants, all of them are content with information received and contacts established. For example, “Yarmarka” trading house (producing foodstuffs) has already started negotiating and drafting logistic and financial solutions for delivery of its exclusive series products to Sweden. Annas Fest & Mat company may become a basis for educating Karelian specialists in catering services. “Ozon” Ltd considers an opportunity of participating in fashion show at  Umeå Fashion Week in 2014. “Druzhba” Ltd and Nordic Incoming have decided on a possibility of promoting a joint tourist product to the markets of the Central Europe.

On a general note, all of the participants have come up with a number of interesting ideas and proposals, some of which, given financial support, could be used for elaboration of cooperation projects which in its turn would become an input from Petrozavodsk and Karelia to the activity program of “Umeå – the Culture Capital of Europe 2014”