A startup grant supports a new entrepreneur

Extension to the maximum duration of start-up funding remains in force until 31 December 2021

Extension to the maximum duration of start-up funding.

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the maximum duration of the start-up grant has been temporarily extended from 12 months to 18 months. Start-up grants may be provided for a maximum period of 18 months to entrepreneurs who have begun operating with a start-up grant in 2020, if there is a justifiable reason for the extension due to the coronavirus pandemic. Entrepreneurs starting in 2021 are not eligible for the extended start-up grant period.

The legislative amendment concerning the extension of the maximum duration will remain valid until 31 December 2021. Start-up grants are issued in six-month periods. All applications concerning the extension of the start-up grant period must be submitted to the TE Office. As a general rule, the extension application must be submitted before the end of the previous period. 

The temporary amendment to the decree on the payment of start-up grants ended on 31 December 2020. In 2021, start-up grants will be paid normally only for the days when the person works for their company.

Support for new entrepreneurs

The purpose of startup grants is to encourage new businesses and promote employment. The grant provides an entrepreneur with a secure income during the time that getting the business up and running is estimated to take – however for no more than 12 months. The startup grant consists of a basic grant, which amounts to EUR 33.78 a day.

You may be eligible for a startup grant if

  • you are an unemployed jobseeker
  • you are not unemployed, but you are setting up as a full-time entrepreneur after a period in paid employment, education or domestic work
  • you are part-time entrepreneur and you are planning to become full-time entrepreneur.

The startup grant will only be granted by the TE Office once it has been established that enterprising is a suitable option for the applicant to employ him/herself.

Instructions for customers in local government pilots on employment 

If you are a customer of a local government pilot on employment, you can apply for a start-up grant from your home municipality. Your municipality of residence decides whether to grant you a start-up grant or not. Your home municipality advises you on matters related to the start-up grant. 

Preconditions for receiving the grant include

  • being a full-time entrepreneur
  • having adequate capabilities for the intended business
  • having potential for continued profitable operation
  • the grant is necessary for the entrepreneur's survival
  • the business is only started after the grant has been awarded.

See also

How to apply for a startup grant

When you are planning on starting a business and applying for startup grant, the first thing to do is to contact Enterprise Finland Telephone Service. The advisors guide and inform you on starting a business and on applying for startup grant.

When you begin to plan on starting a business contact also the TE office. In general, a startup grant will not be granted, if full-time entrepreneurship has started before the TE-office has made the decision on granting a startup grant.

To make an appointment send a contact request in the E-services for personal customers (Services for new entrepreneurs/Aloittavan yrittäjän palvelut) or call your local TE Office. Be prepared to discuss with the TE office expert on your business idea and your plans on starting a business. You will also go through the competitive situation between companies on your line of business in your area, and talk about your own skills and need of support regarding entrepreneurship.

Submit your application for a startup grant to the TE Office using the online services or the form on which you provide information about your enterprise's business and financial plan and other details.

The decision on whether or not to award a startup grant to an applicant is made by the TE Office. Such factors as the competitive situation of companies in the relevant sector and the need for new enterprising in the area are taken into consideration when making the decision.

Startup grant is paid according to the payment period afterwards (payment period = one month). Apply for payment from the development and administration centre for ELY Centres and TE Offices (the KEHA Centre) within two months from the expiration of the payment period.

Training for new entrepreneurs

The TE Office provides information about training intended for those planning to start a business. Flexible combinations of startup grants and entrepreneur training are also available.

For example, you can start in the training while you are receiving a grant. The TE Office organises free training for new entrepreneurs as labour market training. Suitable training is also provided by the ELY Centres and many educational institutions.

My Enterprise Finland service on the web

My Enterprise Finland service contains information and tools for both new and established companies. For example, you can draw up your business plan using the tools provided by the My Enterprise Finland service and use this information to apply for a startup grant.