Lift business earned Raimo Ryhänen and Mika Ryhänen the title of Entrepreneur of the Year

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2019-12-11 9:59

Espoon Hissi Oy, Entrepreneur of the Year 2019

In the 1980s, Kone Oyj held a strong position in the Finnish lift maintenance market. This did not stop Raimo Ryhänen, a former employee of the Finnish industrial giant Valmet, from taking a bold leap to entrepreneurship in 1985. This is when Espoon Hissi was born. To ramp up the challenges that the new company faced, businesses operating in the lift sector are required to hold a license, as the sector is regulated by strict laws and regulations. 

Espoon Hissi, literally “the lift of Espoo”, has been successful ever since the beginning. Last year its net sales exceeded EUR 6 million. In recent years, its annual growth has been around 10 per cent. Its operating profit margin is excellent: about 25 per cent every year. The company employs about 35 people, its growth held back by the poor availability of skilled labour.

The main sources of revenue for Espoon Hissi are the repairs and maintenance of some 3,300 lifts, accounting for about 50% of the company’s net sales. The share of lift modernisations is about 40%, while the rental of apartments and investments account for about 10%.

In its award justification, the Federation of Espoo Enterprises states that Raimo Ryhänen has built a foundation for an exceptional, gazelle-like growth story. Following a controlled transfer to the next generation, the current Managing Director Mika Ryhänen and his siblings Mattias and Anna have successfully maintained the astonishing growth rate and profitability of the family business. A key component of the excellent performance is the highly skilled staff. 

One of the cornerstones of Espoon Hissi’s success is its reliable, customer-oriented service, including a 24/7 maintenance service. In an urgent situation, a lift maintenance technician will arrive in less than 30 minutes. In other situations where a lift is out of service, they will arrive in 1–2 hours. Excellent account management guarantees long-term contracts with customers. In fact, the company’s longest-running contracts are almost as old as the business itself.

Espoon Hissi also offers housing companies a financing option for the renovation of lifts. The renovation can be carried out with a seven-year payment period, and no down payment is required.

The Federation of Espoo Enterprises appreciates the Ryhänen family not trying to hide the company’s financial success story regardless of what Finnish people would characteristically do in a similar situation. The fact is that the more profitable a company is, the better it can serve its customers, offer secure jobs and take care of its tax and other obligations to society.


Further information

Raimo Ryhänen, Chair of the Board of Directors, Espoon Hissi Oy, tel. +358 (0)400 447 688
Mika Ryhänen, Managing Director, Espoon Hissi Oy, tel. +358 (0)20 7811 878
Erkki Pärssinen, Managing Director, Federation of Espoo Enterprises, tel. +358 (0)50 411 1104

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Part of the Business Espoo network, the Federation of Espoo Enterprises annually awards the title of Entrepreneur of the Year in Espoo. The selection criteria include the company’s exemplary operations, interesting business idea, a well-controlled financial situation and the development of its operations.

The Federation of Finnish Enterprises is the largest business federation in Finland with 115,000 member companies, looking after the interests of small and medium-sized enterprises in Finland. About 50,000 member companies are employers. They employ about 660,000 people, including the entrepreneurs. This number is based on calculations made with Statistic Finland in 2018. The activities of the Federation of Finnish Enterprises comprise 400 local associations, 20 regional organisations and 63 trade organisations. The Federation of Espoo Enterprises is the largest of the local associations.