Finnish consumers spend a total of EUR 2.8 billion on clothes annually, with EUR 1 billion going to the international clothes chains operating in Finland. Swedish, Norwegian and Danish family companies have been particularly successful in the Finnish market. New Nordic clothing chains are still entering the market.
According to Päivi Lukkari, planning director for the Finnish clothing company Nanso, the success of the Swedish companies is based on the international growth of the Swedish company Hennes&Mauritz over many decades, which has created many opportunities for professional development and subcontracting. Today Hennes&Mauritz has over 2,300 stores in 41 countries.
Finnish clothing companies have also attempted to conquer the world but so far without success. According to Antti Vassinen, a researcher into strategic marketing at the Aalto University, Finland does not have a strong tradition of international trade due to its past reliance on trade with the former Soviet Union, among other things. In his view Finland now has the technical know-how but is lacking in investment. Nevertheless, he believes that soon Finnish retail concepts will be visible on the shopping streets around the world.