Trustee members:

Finnish American Chamber of Commerce, Florida
Issue 10
Volume 4
October 2013


 taking a business to the next level is not easy and it certainly does not come to you by doing what you are use to do and expecting different results. FACC is taking brave steps to a new direction and planning partnerships that allow us to grow. You might have noticed our first shared partner event with the Swedish American Chamber (SACC) which was a great success. We have now reach out to the Norwegians (NACC) as well and planning on joining our efforts for an annual event that could attract larger audience both locally and internationally. 

We welcome you to join us in this effort and bring your expertise to a good use by joining our planning committee.


At your service,


Lena Hartikainen

FACC-FL President


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News from Florida

S. Florida economy grew faster than U.S. average 
South Florida's economy grew 3.5 percent in 2012, outpacing the U.S. average metro increase of 2.5 percent and leading the other Florida metro areas, according to data released by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis. Read more here.

Tourist spending boosting U.S. economy 
A growing number of tourists from countries including China, India and Argentina are pouring into America's shopping malls to snap up everything from iPhones to Coach handbags that carry cheaper price tags in the U.S. So-called tourism exports, or the value of products and services purchased by visitors from abroad, have climbed to a record, boosting the economy and employment. More at Bloomberg.

Business incubators popping up in South Florida

The entertainment incubator is one of several popping up in South Florida as an improving economy encourages more people to embrace the risks and rewards of entrepreneurship.

In July, a technology incubator opened in Coral Springs to focus on start-ups in the technology, digital art, and health care fields. Broward College is working to get a general business incubator up and running this fall. And the established technology incubator Enterprise Development Corp. at Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton has expanded twice in the past year. Read here more about entertainment and digital media incubator.


Miami Design District´s transformation into a luxury shopping destination is underway

Valentino, Fendi, Tom Ford, Dolce & Gabbana, Harry Winston, Givenchy, Giorgio Armani and Van Cleef & Arpels. All those ultra-luxury fashion and jewelry brands - and many more - will soon open their gilded doors in Miami's redeveloped Design District, joining other high-end designers like Louis Vuitton, Hermès, Berluti, Emilio Pucci, Prada, Celine and Cartier, which have already set up shops. Read more about the plan here.


Florida exports down 3.6%

The latest international trade numbers show that $4.85 billion worth of goods left Florida for international markets in July, down 3.6 percent from June, according to Durham, N.H.-based Exports of manufactured goods contributed significantly to the state's international trade, accounting for 75 percent of all state exports in July. Full article here.


GE has plans to relocate manufacturing plant from New York to Florida, like many other companies. 

A proposal by General Electric Co. to relocate a manufacturing plant from Fort Edward, N.Y., to Clearwater could bring hundreds of new jobs to the Tampa Bay area. Read more about it here.


What can you buy with $225,000 in Florida?

Median home prices in Southwest Florida are near five-year highs, and as a result, that midpoint on the price scale isn't buying what it used to.

The median price for a single-family home sold by members of the Sarasota Association of Realtors was $227,500 in July. That is $49,500 - or 28 percent - more than the same period last year. Full article here.


News from Finland


Partnership between Finland and USA to boost material science breakthroughs 
New momentum for the active application of the Finnish high-level materials expertise is now being sought through cooperation with the U.S. The networking and poster session of the seminar was organised at the new Innovation Center of the U.S. Embassy in Finland that serves as an excellent example of the active adoption of new technologies. Read the article here.  
Genetic data company MediSapiens expands to the US  MediSapiens, the Finnish gene database and software company, is expanding its operations to the US. The company is opening its US office in Cambridge, Massachusetts. 

The company develops products to benefit especially cancer treatments and development of cancer drugs. MediSapiens hosts the world's largest unified gene expression database of human tissues and diseases, and builds easy-to-use software. Read full article here.

Rovio exporting Finnish education to world, first center opens in Shanghai
Rovio, known for its Angry Birds games, is now expanding its wings to education. The company is exporting Finnish educational expertise to the world, first to China. The company has signed a preliminary agreement with 123 Education Development in China, and the first Angry Birds Playground is opening in Shanghai. Read more 

Rapid DNA test reveals infection
Abacus Diagnostica, specialists in DNA testing and rapid diagnostics of infectious diseases, seeks brisk growth in international markets. The key to this global conquest lies in a product family that saves the healthcare sector both time and money. Read the article here.
Nokia's Here partners with Mercedes-Benz to develop self-driving cars 
Nokia's map and location business Here has teamed up with the German car manufacturer Mercedes-Benz and two other companies to connect cars to cloud, develop smart maps for connected cars and ultimately develop self-driving cars. More here 
Building mobile momentum in the healthcare sector 
Oulu-based iSTOC as rolled mobile technology, machine vision, rapid diagnostics and cloud services all into one. The result is a package that brings significant savings to the healthcare sector and also has the potential to revolutionise healthcare in developing countries. Read the full story here. 
Helsinki, the Most Honest city according to The Reader´s Digest test
If you have to loose your wallet while traveling, you should do it in Helsinki where 11 out of 12 wallets were returned when The Reader´s Digest did a "Lost Wallet" Test social experiment. New York came in a good 5th place. See how other cities ranked here. 
Finland ranks as one of the happiest countries in the world 
Finland is the seventh happiest country in the world, according to the recently released World Happiness Report 2013. A total of 156 countries took part in the survey. Read the article here.

New Members








Bodis Realty, Inc. is a full-service real estate brokerage focusing on residential real estate in South Florida, with offices in Wellington and West Palm Beach.


Christine Ziebell (Realtor ®) is a Finnish native, former attorney, who moved to the US permanently in 2010. She is based out of the company's Wellington office and is specialized in residential and investment real estate. In addition to English, Christine is fluent in Finnish and Swedish.


To learn more, please visit Bodis Realty's website


Introducing a new TRUSTEE Membership Level
 Apply now and get 3 free months!

Gain extra visibility for your company as a Trustee Member
  • Company logo featured on Chamber's new website, newsletter and all of the Chambers event materials on a banner 
  • Special recognition at events 
  • Opportunities to introduce keynote speakers at events
  • Preferred seating at events (when seating assignments are used)
  • Introduction on FACC's Facebook page
ONLY $1,000 / Calendar year 2014
If you join NOW you get 3 extra months!!

Act now, we have a limited time and availability offer for our current members to be a Trustee Member.
 Get yours NOW
More information and applications


FACC Upcoming events

  • November, 14th                 Why does my business need Social Media? 
            • Social media experts sharing their thought on how to engage your business in social media the best possible way.                                        
  • December, 13th                 Annual Christmas party at Benvenuto restaurant
            • Honorable Speaker: Ambassador Jarmo Viinanen,  Permanent Representative of Finland to the United Nations.
  • January, 16th                      Lecture about Taxation & Investments                                          
  • February, 8th                      Welcome to Florida / Tervetuloa Floridaan  
  • February, TBA                     Nordic Summit with SACC and NACC. Stay tuned, more to follow.                                        
  • March, 13th                        Lecture with a Education theme                                                                               
  • April, 7-8th                         Palm Beach Strategic Forum. 
            • More information about the keynote speakers here.
  • May                                   ABICC Inauguration of the year
            • Fantastic opportunity to our members to present your goods or services to an international audience in Miami.

                               Consulate Corner

Consulate logo
The passport machine will be at the Finnish Honorary Consulate again in October. If you are Finnish citizen and need to renew your passport please make reservations directly with the consulate.
DATES: October 21-25
PLACE: 523 Lake Avenue, Lake Worth
                      TEL: 561 582 2335
Partner Trade Events  




  FOCUS 2014 - January 23, 30 & 31

Jan 23, 2014 1:00 PM - 7:00 PM
FOCUS is a 3 day program for executives and other key individuals from the private, public and nonprofit sectors who want to deepen their knowledge of Palm Beach County and establish civic relationships.

 Program Objectives:

  • Broaden working knowledge of the community
  • Connect with people of influence in Palm Beach County
  • Explore Palm Beach County's strengths, challenges and  initiative

The FOCUS 2014 program fee is $400 and payable upon registration. 

Space is limited and applications are accepted based on the date received. More information here.




We hope you find this newsletter useful and we love to get feedback and suggestions how we can make it better. We also have many volunteer opportunities within the chamber so let us know how you want to be involved.




Lena Hartikainen
Finnish American Chamber of Commerce