Regional Game Industry Profile Finland & Helsinki

The Finish Game Industry is comparably well developed. There are 220 game developing companies* in Finland, 100 of them are located in the Helsinki area. Remarkably, the number of employees in the industry is relatively high. Overall, the Finnish Game Industry employs 3,2000 people and about 2,350 employees work in the Helsinki area. In Helsinki a little over two thousand employees come up per million inhabitants. This leads to an average size of 23 employees per company in Helsinki area, which is the second highest value in the BSR. 10 companies in the Helsinki area have more than 50 employees. Approximately 31% of employees are non-Finnish (in the whole country approximately 27%).

In the Helsinki area, seven game developer companies (2016: 6) and one engine provider belong to the top 100 global players. The game ecosystem is growing. On average, each Finnish company achieves a revenue of almost 10 m €. Since there are some very successful companies, the number of companies really generating over 1 m € revenue is 34 (2016: 30). The number of studios making higher revenues has risen: In 2018, over 50 m € turnover was made by 4 studios (2016: 2), 3 of those studios were located in Helsinki, and over 10 m € was made by 11 studios (2016: 7). In Helsinki, 15 studios achieved 5 – 50 m € revenue in 2018. 98% of the turnover is generated by firms located around Helsinki. With five interest and lobby associations and two incubators with a special focus on games, the Finnish Game Industry is rather well supported.

Source: Data from Neogames (2018), own figure

Source: Data from Neogames (2018), own figure

Source: Data from Neogames (2018), own figure

Interest/lobby associations 5
Incubators with full focus on games 2
Technical incubators that could in principle harbour game start-ups 1
Revenue 2018: 2,100 m €, 2017: 2,350 m €, 2016: 2,500 m €, 2015: 2,400 m €, 2014: 1,800 m € (source: Neogames 2018)

Additional information

Rapid growth has been one of the main characteristics of the Finnish game industry during the last decade. The rapid growth is now over and the years 2017 and 2018 have been years of stabilisation.
In 2018 there were 220 active studios (2016: 250) and between 2017-2018 48 new studios were established (2015-2016: 45 new studios). Even if the number of studios is smaller since 2015, the number of employees in the Finnish Game Industry has increased (2018: 3,200; 2016: 2,750; 2015: 2,700). The number of studios has been declining since 2015 but the number of studios making over 1 m € annual turnover has increased (2018: 34 studios).

Some of the studios established during the start-up boom (2011–2015) haven’t been able to stay in business. Some merged, while some others switched trade to more traditional ICT products. The main reasons for the slowdown in 2016 and after that was the intense competition, especially in mobile platforms, and the global war for talents in the industry. The availability of experienced professionals is still one of the biggest obstacles for future growth. The industry is expecting to hire 500 people during 2019-2020, most of those to the Helsinki area (400 people).

Overall, the Finnish game industry is doing well. Hyper growth of previous years has turned into a more mature development and quest for stability.

Status: 2020