Good ideas come from practice
A non-electric, mechanical cow brush may not necessarily be the first thing that comes to your mind when thinking about participants in a business idea competition during our digital age, but the innovation of FinnEasy Oy from Suhmura, the EasySwing cow brush, has really hit the right nerve in its field.
- “The feedback we have received from the farmers has been that it is good that the product has no electricity or extra parts. The brush is installed to the wall and it has a pivoting swivel to allow the animals to brush themselves all around. And it is durable,´ says Juha Kultanen, the father of the idea.
The first version of the brush was created in 2012 when Kultanen was working in mechanical engineering and mechanical design for a sweeping machine company. A few extra brush units were left over from a project and he made a floor-installed brush post for the animals in his own barn. This started a product development process that finally reached its swivel-shape brush, which was then patented, and domestic sales started before the company participated in the Start Me Up business idea competition in the spring of 2016.
- “We entered the competition as complete novices. At the time, the product development was completed, but it's safe to say that we would now be able to tell so much more about visions for the future and our other plans. The competition was a really good thing, and we were able to learn a lot.´
In fact, it was Juha´s wife Heini who discovered the competition, and she would most likely also remember the company´s final placement in the competition even better. More important than the competition, however, was the fact that the Kultanen family started developing FinnEasy at the Yrityshautomo on a larger scale.
- “We didn´t have any time to hang out, in the evenings we just went through an enormous amount of matters in an hour with Kari Pulkkinen.´
Since then, the story of FinnEasy has really taken off, with brushes currently being sold to more than 10 countries outside of Finland, and a marketing trip to Canada is currently being prepared. FinnEasy has prepared for growth.
- “We need to ensure that the product and the organization are growing in line with each other. The market for this product is clearly there. For example, regulations in Denmark determine that there must be one brush per 50 cows, so the world is certainly heading in the direction of investing more in the welfare of animals.