Growth generated in SMEs: Growth enterprise company analysis of the 2011-2014 growth period

During previous growth periods, the number of growth companies in the Tampere Region increased at one of the fastest rates in Finland, but during the 2011-2014 growth period, the number of growth companies dropped sharply. The Tampere Region's share of all growth companies in the country also fell slightly. Depending on the stringency of the criteria, the Tampere Region accounted for roughly 9 per cent during the most recent growth period, whereas it had been as much as over 10 per cent in the previous growth period.

In the 2011-2014 growth period, there were 59 growth companies listed in the Tampere Region that met the preferred OECD and Eurostat definition for a growth company, i.e. initial employment was at least ten people and which grew at least 20 per cent annually over the next three years. The graphs shown here (economic structure comparison) also include companies with an annual growth of at least 10 per cent. There were 179 such companies in the Tampere Region.

Growth companies by industrial classification in Tampere Region in the 2011-2014 growth period. Source: Statistics Finland and Toimiala online.

In analysing the sectoral distribution of growth companies , attention is also given to the different sectors that are sensitive to economic fluctuations. For example, during the previous growth period, the construction sector had significantly more growth companies than compared to the economic structure. Today, their share of the growth companies has fallen to a level below that of the economic structure. Conversely, there were more growth companies in the commercial sector than compared to the economic structure. Indeed, as a population growth centre, the Tampere Region does offer consumer-service companies and sectors the opportunity for growth.

A majority of the companies enjoying a growth of at least 20 per cent a year were in the industrial and commercial sectors. The information and communications sector and professional support services sector also stood out in this respect. Industry and commerce also emerged strongly in growth companies with a more moderate growth. In addition to the above, construction and professional activities also stand out in smaller growth companies. During the 2011-2014 growth period, a significant percentage of growth companies in the Tampere Region were found in labour-intensive sectors. Upon analysis of the various growth criteria, the sectors experiencing growth are quite similar.

A majority of growth companies were placed in a category, in which the number of personnel was 20-49 in 2013. There were far fewer large companies, employing at least 100 people, among the growth companies.

At the national level, the growth experienced in growth companies had been genuine growth, i.e. an increase in the number of employees related to business expansion. However, there has been less genuine growth than in the previous growth period, while there was a slight increase in the growth factors related to groups and acquisitions. However, information about the reasons for growth is not available at a regional level.

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