Meet the Team

Jaakko Hynynen


Keeps the accelerator on course at full steam. Has a background in Web Development and rocking the dancefloor. Likes to cook and play badminton.

Panu Paljakka


A physics student gone bad. Went from Aaltoes board to Mr. Execution taking care of the program. Has lived abroad most of his life, but has now found a home in Helsinki.

Kasper Suomalainen


Jumped to hustle marketing at Sauna after leading Aaltoes board. Grew up in the US, Finland, India and China, so home is wherever he falls asleep that day.

Riku Asikainen

Head Coach

Seasoned entrepreneur with strong emphasize on growth investments on SMEs.He has been founder, director and investor in more than thirty ventures.

Artturi Tarjanne

Head Coach

Venture capitalist with a serial entrepreneur background. Co-founder of Nexit Ventures, transatlantic VC fund focusing in Mobile & Wireless market.

Ilkka Kivimäki


Will make startups go through blood, sweat, tears and extreme heat. Ilkka is a serial entrepreneur and an angel investor. His passion is to build companies that make a difference.

Antti Niini

Space Emperor

The shell of a biker and the core of a teddy bear. Antti a.k.a. the Space Lord smoothly takes care of everything related to the Startup Sauna co-working space.


Startup Sauna co-working space is the meeting point for aspiring entrepreneurs in Northern Europe. The 1.500 square meter industry hall is open for everybody to work in – no membership or previous ties to Startup Sauna are required.
Our physical address is Betonimiehenkuja 3D, 02150, Espoo, located at the Aalto University campus in Otaniemi – approximately a 10-minute drive from Helsinki centre. Startup Sauna space can easily be accessed with buses number 102, 103, 194, 195 from Kamppi. A cab ride from the city centre will cost you approximately 15€.

Startup Sauna Foundation

Startup Sauna Foundation was founded in September 2012 with a wide national support. It was put up by fifty-seven individual serial entrepreneurs and investors from the community. The reason behind the foundation is to create a more longer-term entity to support its 20-year mission of building a functioning startup ecosystem in the region.

The foundation focuses on developing the core activities such as:

  • Startup Sauna accelerator program – a five-week program for the most promising startups from Nordics, Eastern Europe and Russia.
  • Slush conference – one of Europe’s leading startup and investor conferences, organized every November
  • Startup Life internship program – sending the best students and graduates to different startup hubs to intern at the best startups in the world.

In addition, the foundation provides small grants to individuals and groups boosting the surrounding startup ecosystem by their actions. For more information, please contact Voitto Kangas.

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