The strong entrepreneurial spirit in the Iisalmi region is a phenomenon known nationwide, dubbed the miracle of Iisalmi.

When female energy is added to the mix, it takes it to another level and creates women-owned businesses.

Established in 1952, when Finland hosted the Olympic Games, Iisalmi Region Women's Enterprise Association changed its name ten years ago to include the neighbouring regions in its activities. The Association has been successful in keeping alive its original spirit and honourable traditions.

“We energise each other,” says Association chair Tiina Karppinen.

This dynamic group of entrepreneurs meets up regularly. The first members turned up at the founding meeting after they had seen an invitation for a new club, and since then the Association has never been short of new people.

“We're always organising and doing lots of fun things together. It's energising and you feel all refreshed again.”

The women business owners know each other well and support each other. Close collaboration, caring for each other and doing things together are all close to the heart of these enterprising women.

“They are what bind us businesswomen together. With the busy lives we lead, our activities give us so much joy and energy,” says business owner Eila Sirviö smiling.

Amongst the happy chatter, the owners make useful contacts. The members have created a warm, collegial and understanding community where people appreciate each other and successfully attract both new clients and business partners.