Open Position: Business Advisor for the Seeds of Bravery program

Are you motivated to work with innovative startups and growth companies? Are you ready to support Ukraine’s tech startup scene and bring it closer to the EU?

We are now looking for a dynamic and experienced Business Advisor to join our active community and bring startup advisory expertise to the Ukrainian startup scene, as well as help to grow Aalto Startup Center’s startups and Aalto’s own research commercialization projects. This is a fixed-term position with a starting date as soon as possible. The employment contract will be made until 31.12.2025.

The Business Advisor role has a focus on the EIC-funded consortium project which supports Ukraine’s tech startup scene until the end of 2025.

We are offering a unique and interesting opportunity to work with Ukraine’s tech startup ecosystem and the Europe-wide consortium supporting Ukraine’s startup community, as well as with the growth companies based in Aalto University.

In this position you will have a chance to make an impact by bridging Aalto Startup Center’s diverse expertise with the development of Ukraine’s tech startup scene. You will also have the opportunity to help high potential early-stage ideas, companies and teams grow and reach their full potential within Aalto Startup Center.

During the 26 years of its operation, Aalto Startup Center has acted as a springboard for many success stories in the Finnish business community, such as the gaming company Rovio, the job search website Duunitori, the design firm Design Pole, and the well-being software Cuckoo. During recent years, its focus has been in sustainable research-based and innovative deep-tech startups and project teams such as Surgify Medical and Solar Foods.

Your role and goals

You will work 50-70% of your time as Aalto’s business advisory expert in an EIC funded pan-European network, Seeds of Bravery [UASEEDs] Your activities will focus mostly on project tasks relating to Business Creation and Pre-acceleration programmes as well as Business acceleration and scaling programmes. The programmes will be co-designed and operated in partnership with other consortium members in Ukraine and in other European countries. Aalto University participates the project through a collaboration between Aalto Startup Center and Aalto Center for Knowledge and Innovation Research CKIR, which is an academic and multidisciplinary research center at the Aalto University School of Business.

30-50% of your work consists of helping Aalto Startup Center’s portfolio companies and project teams develop their business. Together with the other business advisors, you work as a team to help each startup and project team to take their next leap, which might relate to e.g. reaching market readiness, raising funding or building the team.

Your network and team

You will be part of the Aalto Startup Advisory team that delivers the Business Generator service program to coach startups and Business Finland-funded ‘Research to Business’ project teams in Aalto Startup Center. You will work closely in the UASEEDs project with Aalto Center for Knowledge and Innovation Research CKIR, as well as the whole consortium of partners. You will also work closely with other business advisors in the team, with all staff of Aalto Startup Center as well as staff in the Aalto Innovation Services team. The Aalto Startup Advisory team is currently led by Niko Downie, Head of Startup Advisory.

Your experience and ambitions

We are looking for a person who is inspired by seeing startups grow.

Our ideal candidate:

  • has experience in successfully supporting early-stage businesses to accelerate and grow
  • has the ability and desire to focus on startup business development and to help startups to scale
  • has and is willing to share his/her experience and make an impact
  • has the “pay it forward” attitude
  • is experienced and well networked in the startup ecosystem
  • can work both independently and as a team player
  • has excellent interaction and communications skills
  • works fluently in English

What we offer

  • A dynamic environment, where colleagues and customers share a passion for fostering the growth of early stage startups.
  • A chance to make an impact. We are proud of our purpose to shape a sustainable future. We spark the game changers of tomorrow, and renew society with research-based knowledge, creativity and an entrepreneurial mindset.
  • Great possibilities for competence development and learning. We constantly keep learning to find the most impactful ways to empower – and invest in – our people.
  • Culture that inspires and includes everyone. All our work is guided by the values of the university: responsibility, courage, and collaboration.  It’s the people that create Aalto, now and in the future. We want to be an open community where equality and inclusion enable curiosity, innovation, collaboration and wellbeing.

We work in a hybrid way, and the primary workplace is Otaniemi, Espoo. The support for Ukraine will be primarily performed on-line or meeting consortium partners outside Ukraine. The Otaniemi campus is a thriving and connected community of 100 nationalities, 13,000 students and 4,500 employees. Life at the transformed campus is vibrant and filled with amazing architecture, calming nature, and a variety of cafes, restaurants, services and good connections along the metro line.

Join us!

If this sounds like a perfect match for you, please submit your CV and motivation letter with the salary expectation through our recruitment system by 12.5.2024. We will review applications and may invite suitable candidates to interview already during the application period. We aim to have a transparent and equal recruitment process, so feel free to ask us for feedback.

Please note: Aalto University’s employees and visitors should apply for the position via our internal system Workday.

You can get further information about the position by calling Niko Downie, Head of Startup Advisory, tel. +358 50 302 7996 , on Tuesday April 30th at 14:00-15:00 or on Monday May 6th at 11:00-12:00.

Aalto Startup Center is a hybrid accelerator based at Aalto University offering both incubation and accelerator services to early stage and growth-driven startups and research-based project teams. The participants include companies originating from within Aalto and outside of it. Aalto Startup Center also helps to create business from research-based projects. Aalto Startup Center also operates several partner programs and is involved in publically funded projects like EU-funded projects. Annually, there are approximately 50 companies and teams at Aalto Startup Center. Aalto Startup Center’s premises are located in Otaniemi, Espoo.