Creve (Creative Venture) is a virtual incubator that offers online business services for the creative industries, as well as creative boost for other industries. Creve helps people with the various stages of planning, founding, and international development of a company. Creve’s network of services spans the entire country of Finland and includes international partners as well. The primary organizer of Creve is Humak University of Applied Sciences.
The main purpose of Creve is to help entrepreneurs realize their dreams – to bring their plans into fruition by offering group guidance, business courses, virtual accelerators and creative cooperation. Creve is actively engaged in enhancing the network of creative industry services in Finland. In doing so, Creve functions as a facilitator of the creative economy.
In addition to offering both short- and long-term support for new creative entrepreneurs, Creve also helps existing businesses develop their operations. Creve’s customers include entrepreneurs in the fields of e.g. design, wellness, digital marketing, sports, gaming and experience production.
Creve 2.0 builds on a decade of work
A project titled Creve 2.0 (funded by European Social Fund) was started two years ago, and will continue until the end of the current year 2020. However, it must be emphasized that Creve will continue operating after the Creve 2.0 project is concluded.
Creve has operated in Southwest Finland for nearly 11 years, the last two of which have been extended to include nationwide activity. It is currently active in 7 different cities in Finland. Creve 2.0 is designed to expand on all the existing services and networks created during the past decade, update the most wanted services to next level and offer them virtually – not only to support CI entrepreneurs but build a network and stronger competence of business in creative industry for business advisors and lecturers.
‘’Creve 2.0 is part of the process of taking Creve to another level. The project is not a conclusion to anything – it has been a great tool used to develop our operations, connections and networks’’, Entrepreneurship and Business Specialist Leena Janhila says.
Creve provides a digital platform for services in the creative industries
Since August 2019, all Creve’s services have been carried out in a digital environment. In recent years, one of the central aims of Creve has been to offer a digital platform that transcends geographical limitations and connects the best creative industry services around Finland.
‘’The purpose of Creve’s digital services is not to erase the importance of local events; it is to combine the strengths of different areas so that everyone in the network can benefit from one another’s competence’’, Leena Janhila says.
One notable virtual service offered by Creve 2.0 is a weekly group discussion event. During the event, which takes place every Friday, entrepreneurs can receive guidance and have conversations about business-related topics.
”Feedback from the attendants has been really positive. The fact that the meetings are held digitally makes the meetings accessible to everyone regardless of their location”, Janhila says.
The meetings are led by visiting instructors who share their knowledge, offer guidance, and take part in the conversations. The topics of discussion have included e.g. the benefits of improvisation, gamification in problem-solving, and the values and ethics of art in business. Once a month, the meeting is also organized in cooperation with Creve’s international partners, who offer business counceling in English and elucidate on the state of the creative industries in other countries.
In the video, entrepreneur Anna Tolppa talks about how Creve helped her establish her own dance studio. English subtitles available.
Creative boost for other industries
In addition to guiding entrepreneurs in the creative industries, Creve is actively promoting the benefits of creative know-how for the competitivity of a business. The goal is to connect creative industries with other industries and perhaps even set fruitful collaborations in motion.
The latest concrete action carried out to realize this goal is a new virtual accelerator program for strategic design, founded by Creve in cooperation with Design Forum Finland. It is the first business accelerator program in Finland that brings together people from a variety of professions.
Every team in the program includes a business advisor, a professional from an institute of higher education, a service design agency, and a representative from the ‘case’ company. The team constructs a business development plan with strategic design themes and methods and applies funding for it. The cooperation is intended to continue after the program as well’’, Leena Janhila says.