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Topi Paananen

EY World Entrepreneur Of The Year Class of 2021, Finland

CEO of Peikko Group Corporation

Building on firm foundations, Topi Paananen turned a local business into a global player in the construction industry. 

Photographic portrait of Topi Paananen

Topi Paananen

When Topi Paananen took over the family business in 2005, he wanted to shake things up. Started by his father in 1965, Peikko Group Corporation had solid foundations in Finland, but Topi had plans to expand. In just 15 years, he turned a small Finnish firm into a global leader in construction materials.

Headquartered in Lahti, Peikko’s core business is making steel beams and frames used to build everything from hospitals to schools and car parks. Topi led a huge push to expand into international markets, increasing product sales to 30 new countries. To cope with the demand, Peikko opened 10 new facilities and now has factories in 11 countries, employing nearly 2,000 people.

A champion of the circular economy, Topi is committed to helping the construction industry reduce its carbon footprint. To that end, Peikko is one of the first companies to create a composite beam made almost entirely out of recycled steel. His mission is to help his customers build faster, safer and more efficiently.

*Information correct as of June 2021.