Finnish music exports surge in Germany

Finnish music exports are growing in German-speaking parts of Europe. Music Finland’s recently concluded initiative shows that carefully-targeted investments can achieve a multi-layered impact.

Aus Finnland, carried out in 2015-16, was the biggest internationalisation venture for Finnish music ever. The two-year venture encompassed the entire Finnish music industry. During the initiative, companies’ turnover expanded significantly in the region and Finnish music was seen and heard throughout German-speaking Europe (GSA: Germany, Switzerland and Austria), including on radio and at concert venues.

“It’s rare to see results in music exports this quickly, as it often takes years to create networks, find the right partners and to time projects accurately. Aus Finnland was carried out on the industry players’ own terms and in support of their own export strategies. Many contacts and openings made during the initiative will bear fruit for years to come,” says Music Finland’s Executive Director, Tuomo Tähtinen.

Profits doubled in the region

Finnish music companies that took part in the Aus Finnland initiative saw their export revenues from German-speaking Europe more than double during the initiative. Similarly the number of Finnish tracks played on German radio nearly doubled, while royalties from the region swelled by more than 30 percent on an annual basis. Finnish live acts reached more than a million listeners in GSA annually while being featured in the German media more than 21,000 times during the initiative. Overall the results show that targeted funding and services tailored to the sector can achieve the intended results.

Alma: Global discovery via Germany

One of the highest-profile success stories to come about with help from Aus Finnland is the pop artist Alma, who first made contact with the German music business through a Music Finland songwriting camp in Helsinki in the spring of 2015. As a result, she signed publishing and recording contracts in Germany. Two years later her songs have been played more than 60 million times on streaming services. PME Records, which represents Alma, also gained support for marketing and showcase performances in German-speaking Europe through the initiative. Others who broke through on the German market with help from Aus Finnland include Niila, View, Jaakko Laitinen & Väärä raha as well as Axel Ehnström, who has written hits for successful German artists.

Aus Finnland’s total volume was 1.4 million euros, with a public-sector share of 780,000 euros. Altogether 198 entities took part, including 132 companies. The initiative was funded by the Ministry of Employment and the Economy, the Ministry of Education and Culture, the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland, MES – The Finnish Music Foundation and the participating bodies. Other partners included the Finnish Institute in Germany as well as the German, Austrian and Swiss embassies and many other partners on a project-by-project basis.

Read the entire initiative report in PDF format here (in Finnish).