Taneli Tikka

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Taneli Tikka
Tikka Taneli Entrepreneur Portrait.jpg
Taneli Tikka in 2009
Born (1978-03-08) March 8, 1978 (age 39)
Savitaipale, Finland
Residence Helsinki, Finland
Nationality Finnish
Other names Niko Taneli Tikka
Alma mater Helsinki School of Economics
Occupation CEO, Angel investor
Known for Entrepreneurship, Blogging

Taneli Tikka (Born 8 March 1978, Savitaipale, Finland) is an entrepreneur who has worked for more than 30 companies as CEO, member of the board or otherwise in an advisory role.[1] From 2014 he has worked as the Head of Industrial Internet at Tieto Corporation.[2] Tikka is active in public debate [3] and has been recognized by his industry and technology expertise: in 2010, when he was nominated[by whom?] as the most Influential person in the Finnish ICT[clarification needed] of that year[4] and in 2014 when he was chosen[by whom?] as the Young Board Member of the Year.[1]

Childhood and education[edit]

Tikka was born in Savitaipale in 1978 as the first child of his Finnish mother and Georgian father. He created his first computer program at the age of six. After completing the general upper secondary school, Tikka went on to study software engineering at a school which is now known as the Metropolia University of Applied Sciences. While studying, he started to work for Nokia as a design engineer. In 1999 he stopped his studies as he started his first company with his friends. Taika Technologies Ltd. specialised in digital- and multimedia-based social networking solutions. The company went bankrupt in 2002. He continued his studies at the Helsinki School of Economics, where he graduated First in Academic Standing of this class from the Executive MBA programme in 2004.[1][3][5][5][6]


2002-2007: Ruukki Group ja Magenta[edit]

After Taika Technology's bankruptcy Tikka first worked at WM-data (now CGI) and then as a director of Ruukki Group (now Afarak Group) from 2003 to 2006. For Tikka the bankruptcy was not only a good business lesson, but also a good reference as he was offered a challenging task at Magenta company: turn a company in a bad shape to a victorious one. "They said that as you have made a bankruptcy already you don't mind if it happens again". Magenta Sites was the hosting and IT services company behind the global distribution of the Star Wreck movie, and also the long time hosting partner for Habbo Hotel).[7] Tikka worked in Magenta over the period from 2003 to 2007.[1][5][6][8][9]

2005-2009: IRC-Galleria, Dopplr and RunToShop[edit]

In 2005, Tikka started at Dynamoid where he was responsible for IRC-Galleria's marketing and strategy. In 2006, Tikka was appointed as Dynamoid's CEO. He was one its shareholders.[10][11] The following year IRC-Galleria was sold for EUR 12.5 million to Sulake Corporation, the company behind Habbo Hotel.[12][13]

After that Tikka was hired as COO at Dopplr, where he worked from 2007 to 2009. Lisa Sounio and Marko Ahtisaari were among Dopplr founders.[14][15] The service's idea was to save the business travellers' network so that they know who of their friends are living in the area they are visiting or who of their contacts are travelling to the same destination at the same time as they are. It also showed the local restaurants or shops recommended by other users. Nokia acquired Dopplr in September 2009.[5][6][8][16][17][18][19]

After Dopplr Tikka was CEO at RunToShop, a social shopping startup, from 2008 to 2009.[20]

Tikka is also one of the founders of Vakuutuskone.com (insurance and finance service).

2009-2012: Soprano ja Health Puzzle[edit]

From 2010 to 2011 Tikka was Health Puzzle's CEO. In 2009, Tikka started as a member of the Soprano Plc (NASDAQ OMX listed public company) Board of Directors and in 2011 he was appointed as company's Executive Vice President and was in charge of their web solutions division. Tikka was working in Soprano until 2012.[6][8][21] Later in early 2012 Tikka was promoted to Chief Operating Officer of Soprano Plc.[22] Tikka resigned from Soprano, Plc in 2012.[23]

2012-2014: Startup Sauna, Wunderkraut ja TLD Registry[edit]

Tikka was a co-founder of the Startup Sauna Foundation. Its purpose is to help young promising companies. Startup Sauna has a 1,500 square meter co-working space on Aalto University's campus in Otaniemi. It is the main-organizer of Slush,[24] the largest startup conference in Northern Europe. Tikka has been acting as Startup Sauna and Summer of Startups programs' coach from the beginning (since 2012).[8][25]

In 2012, Tikka assumed the position of CEO of Wunderkraut Finland, a company specialised in web and application development. At the same time, he was appointed to the executive management team and Board of the Wunderkraut Group and became one of the private shareholders in the company. Tikka worked at Wunderkraut until 2013.[8][26][27]

Taneli Tikka in Beijing

Tikka is one of the TLD Registry founders and was its Chairman of the Board from 2011 to 2014. On September 10, 2013 Tikka announced from Beijing that TLD Registry, Ltd that ICANN granted the company global monopoly for two Chinese top-level domains.[28][29] The company sells exclusively two domains meaning ".online" and ".Chinese website", written in Chinese characters. The domain names are used in the same way as, for example, extensions .com and .net. The rights for selling were given by ICANN organization, which has the right to manage the Internet addresses worldwide.[8][30][31]

Tieto’s Industrial Internet[edit]

Tikka was appointed Head of Industrial Internet at Tieto Corporation in May 2014, a position in which he was able to influence the establishment of the new unit. It operates within the company very much like a startup. The unit is organised according to the Lean Innovation model developed by Stanford University based on flexibility, speed and adaptation. The unit has its own administrative system and enjoys a high degree of autonomy.[17] Tieto’s CEO hopes that the culture of the Industrial Internet unit will exercise a positive influence on Tieto’s corporate culture in general.[6][32][33]

Appointments and nominations[edit]

Taneli Tikka has been involved in more than 30 companies as a board member or an advisor. These include Applifier (now part of Unity Technologies), Balancion, BrandMNGR, Netcycler, PackageMedia, Relevant Point, Stardoll, Sulava, Transfluent, Umbra Software and Web of Trust. Tikka was in Muxlim the Board of Directors from 2007 to 2009. It was the world's largest social network for Muslims.[34] The company received the Internationalization Award of the President of the Republic of Finland in 2009.[8][16][25][35][36]

In 2008, Tikka was appointed to the management team of Tekes' (Finnish governmental Funding Agency for Technology and Innovation) Verso technology program. The program lasted until 2010 and was a pioneer program of its time showing the way for Small and medium-sized enterprises of what is required to grow the business and to expand abroad. Many of the Verso program companies grew fast, including gaming companies Supercell and Rovio.[5][8][37][38][39]

Tikka is a member of the steering group of Vigo program which is supporting promising companies. He took also part in Government Report of the Future which handles the future of the business life.[3][40][41]

A Finnish adult's magazine called AKU (short for Donald Duck) nominated him as the Scrooge McDuck of Finland and told that he got all the best toys from others already when he was playing in the sand-pit. Tikka commented the selection by saying that he and Uncle Scrooge both enjoy learning new things despite of their age.[5][42]

In March 2011 the Finnish Information Processing Association appointed Tikka as the ICT Opinion Leader of the Year 2010.[43] This nomination has in the past been received by professors, members of parliament (Jyrki Kasvi) and large organization CEOs (Risto Siilasmaa) in Finland. It has a tradition extending from 1987 onwards to this date.[44]

Tikka was included in Finnish Technology magazine "Tivi"'s Top 100 IT influences ranking list in 2013 and among them he had the sixth highest number of Twitter followers. In 2014 Future Board (association for young board professionals in Finland) awarded Tikka as Young Board Member of the Year.[45][46]

In 2014, he was appointed to start-up company Solu's Board. From 2015 Tikka has been in Kemppi's (a welding equipment manufacturer) board and in August 2015 he started in MTV's Board.[8][47][48]

Tikka has been a frequent guest in the Finnish media.[49]


  1. ^ a b c d "Sarjayrittäjä Taneli Tikan digiosaaminen vie hänet firmojen hallituksiin (article in finnish)". Helsingin Sanomat. 25 Aug 2015. Retrieved 12 Oct 2015. 
  2. ^ "Taneli Tikka siirtyy Tietoon johtamaan seuraavaa teollista vallankumousta (article in finnish)". Tieto. 12 May 2014. 
  3. ^ a b c "Nuoret radikaalit". Image. 21 Dec 2012. Retrieved 12 Oct 2015. 
  4. ^ "Vuoden tietotekniikkavaikuttaja ja -tuote (article in Finnish)". TIVIA. Retrieved 12 Oct 2015. 
  5. ^ a b c d e f "Roope Ankka". Vihreä lanka. 1 Oct 2010. Retrieved 12 Oct 2015. 
  6. ^ a b c d e "Startup jättiläisen sisällä". Tietoviikko. Jan 2015. 
  7. ^ Tuomas Karvonen. "Digitoday (in finnish): Magenta Sites started the global distribution of Star Wreck -movie". Digitoday.fi. Retrieved January 12, 2012. 
  8. ^ a b c d e f g h i "Taneli Tikka' LinkedIn profile". Retrieved 12 Oct 2015. 
  9. ^ "Teknobeduiini (in finnish): Starwreck: 500 000 full downloads and counting". Blogit.digitoday.fi. October 5, 2005. Retrieved January 12, 2012. 
  10. ^ "Helsingin Sanomat International edition: Sulake buys out virtual community IRC-Galleria". Hs.fi. Retrieved January 12, 2012. 
  11. ^ "Video: IRC-Galleria's CEO Tikka talks about the tradesale (in Finnish)". Hs.fi. Retrieved January 12, 2012. 
  12. ^ Finland (April 23, 2007). "Sulake press release: Sulake acquires IRC-Galleria". Sulake.com. Retrieved January 12, 2012. 
  13. ^ "Iltalehti tabloid (in finnish): Tikka leaves IRC-Gallerian after the acquisition". Iltalehti.fi. Retrieved January 12, 2012. 
  14. ^ Lisasounio.com: Lisa co-founded Dopplr.
  15. ^ "Marko's blog: "I am a founding investor in Dopplr"". Ahtisaari.typepad.com. Retrieved January 12, 2012. 
  16. ^ a b "Roope Ankka" (07/2007). Yrittäjä. June 2007. pp. 21–23. 
  17. ^ a b Tietoviikko, 1/2015: ”Startup jättiläisen sisällä”
  18. ^ Sounio, Lisa (September 18, 2007). "Dopplr blog: Taneli Tikka joins Dopplr as COO". Blog.dopplr.com. Retrieved January 12, 2012. 
  19. ^ Ahtisaari, Marko (September 28, 2009). "Dopplr Blog: Nokia Acquires Dopplr". Blog.dopplr.com. Retrieved January 12, 2012. 
  20. ^ Vilpponen, Antti (April 17, 2008). "Tikka joins as CEO of RunToShop". ArcticStartup. Retrieved January 12, 2012. 
  21. ^ "Markkinionti & Mainonta magazine: Tikka to head Soprano (in Finnish)" (in Finnish). Marmai.fi. January 18, 2011. Retrieved January 12, 2012. 
  22. ^ "Soprano, Plc Press Release: Taneli Tikka promoted to COO" (in Finnish). kauppalehti.fi. January 17, 2012. 
  23. ^ "Soprano, Plc Press Release: Taneli Tikka moves to new career challenges" (in Finnish). kauppalehti.fi. February 22, 2012. 
  24. ^ "Slush 11.-12. marraskuuta | Slush 2015". Slush. Retrieved 2015-09-19. 
  25. ^ a b "Taneli Tikka". Startup Sauna. 4 Aug 2011. Retrieved 14 Oct 2015. 
  26. ^ "Taneli Tikka nimitetty toimitusjohtajaksi Wunderkraut-konserniin". Tekniikka & Talous. 21 Nov 2012. Retrieved 14 Oct 2015. 
  27. ^ http://www.tekniikkatalous.fi/ict/taneli+tikka+nimitetty+toimitusjohtajaksi+wunderkrautkonserniin/a857928
  28. ^ https://internetregistry.info/about-us/who-is-tld-registry/
  29. ^ "Tech In Asia: ICANN approves two new Chinese-language web domain endings, set to come online soon". techinasia.com. Retrieved September 24, 2013. 
  30. ^ "Suomalaiset saivat oikeuden myydä verkko-osoitteiden tunnuksia kiinalaisille". Helsingin Sanomat. 11 Sep 2013. Retrieved 14 Oct 2015. 
  31. ^ "Internetregistry.info: Our Founders". internetregistry.info. Retrieved September 24, 2013. 
  32. ^ http://www.tivi.fi/keskustelu/?action=comment&posting=1042357
  33. ^ "Taneli Tikka siirtyy Tietoon johtamaan seuraavaa teollista vallankumousta". Tieto. 12 May 2014. Retrieved 14 Oct 2015. 
  34. ^ Cord, David J. (2012). Mohamed 2.0. Helsingfors: Schildts & Söderströms. pp. 81–82. ISBN 978-951-52-2898-7. 
  35. ^ fi:Tasavallan Presidentin kansainvälistymispalkinto
  36. ^ "Vuoden it-vaikuttaja pitää finanssialaa muutoksen jarruna" (5 Jul 2011). Kauppalehti. 5 Jul 2011. p. 4. 
  37. ^ "Verso-ohjelma loi kokonaan uudet eväät ohjelmistoalan kasvulle". Tekes. 15 Apr 2014. Retrieved 12 Oct 2015. 
  38. ^ Verso contact information, Management group: Taneli Tikka.
  39. ^ http://www.tekes.fi/nyt/uutiset-2014/verso-ohjelma-loi-kokonaan-uudet-evaat-ohjelmistoalan-kasvulle/
  40. ^ "180 minuuttia takapenkillä Taneli Tikan kanssa". Taloussanomat. 25 Aug 2013. Retrieved 12 Oct 2015. 
  41. ^ "Ohjausryhmä". Vigo. Retrieved 12 Oct 2015. 
  42. ^ "Roope Ankka" (summer 2010). AKU. p. 47. 
  43. ^ http://www.ttlry.fi/vuoden-2010-vaikuttaja-ja-tuote/
  44. ^ "blog: chosen as the opinion leader in ICT of 2010". Tane.li. Retrieved January 12, 2012. 
  45. ^ "Sata it-vaikuttajaa". Tivi. 13 Dec 2013. Retrieved 12 Oct 2015. 
  46. ^ "Vuoden nuori hallitustekijä Taneli Tikka on vuoden 2014 nuori hallitustekijä". Futureboard. 2014. 
  47. ^ "Taneli Tikka Kempin hallitukseen". Tivi. 5 Jan 2015. Retrieved 14 Oct 2015. 
  48. ^ "MTV:n hallitus saa kolme uutta jäsentä". Markkinointi & Mainonta. 16 Jul 2015. Retrieved 14 Oct 2015. 
  49. ^ "Welcome to Finland magazine: Talented Mr. Tikka". Welcometofinland.fi. Retrieved January 12, 2012. 

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