Finland's economic stability and high-tech industrial base has made it a key target for international investors. There are no restrictions based on the place of residence or registered office, or citizenship, when it comes to the right to own shares. There are, however, some special situations regarding managerial positions and board memberships in which a special permit from the Trade Register should be applied for.

A limited liability company must have a representative who is entitled to receive summons and other notifications on behalf of the company. The representative must have a place of residence in Finland and is entered in the Trade Register. If the company has a member or deputy member of the board of directors, a managing director, a person authorised to sign for the company, or a holder of procuration who has been notified to the Trade Register, and the person in question is resident in the EEA, it is not necessary to elect a separate representative.

Every limited liability company is obliged to file a Start-up Notification with the Trade Register. Limited liability companies are effectively existent when registered.

What is the most common type of company in Finland?

The two most popular forms of business entity in Finland are:

  • public limited company - osakeyhtiö Oyj
  • private limited company - osakeyhtiö Oy

Main requirements for an Oy

  • at least one board director and one deputy
  • memorandum of association
  • articles of association 
  • audit mandatory if two out of three conditions are satisfied for consecutive years:(i) turnover of at least €200,000 (ii)balance sheet of at least €100,000 (iii)employs at least three people 

Filing requirements

Financial statements (profit and loss account, balance sheet & notes to the accounts) should be filed with the Trade Register within 8 months after the financial period has ended.

Income tax return should be filed with the Tax Administration within 4 months after the financial period has ended and corporate income tax rate is 20%.

Recruitment environment

Finland has one of the most advanced education systems in the world, and the workforce is highly skilled. Despite an unemployment rate of around 8% there are recruitment difficulties in certain sectors such as telecommunications and IT. It is worth noting that there are important labour regulations regarding employment contracts.

Regulatory environment

Although the business environment in Finland is liberal and investor-friendly, the regulatory environment is strict and any breach of the legal or tax code is taken very seriously.

Please contact us and we will be pleased to discuss matters in greater detail.