Trailmaker customer: CapMan Buyout’s investment sets Pharmia on a transformation path from family-owned company

Pharmia is a food supplement and medical equipment manufacturer headquartered in Tuusula, Finland. The market leader in Finland, Pharmia was formed in 1993 and operated until 2021 as a family-owned business. CapMan Buyout acquired a majority share and the firm has undergone a transformation that Trailmaker has helped support.

According to Pekka Kaivola, chairman of the board at Pharmia, the need for food supplements and healthcare products is growing continuously because of an ageing population. “People want to take good care of themselves, and we see the trend for growing business in this sector. It’s the same for our business customers for whom we produce the products.”

The investment by CapMan Buyout speaks to the fact that this is a growth sector, says Kaivola, who notes that the now majority shareholder sees both domestic and international opportunities ahead. “For CapMan, they will be able to impact the sector overall, via future acquisitions by Pharmia and by utilising their own expertise. The target for Pharmia is maintaining the strong market position in Finland while expanding internationally.”

Petteri Laaksomo, Pharmia CEO, says that the change in ownership is a significant point in the company’s journey. “The transformation that we are doing now is maybe the biggest in the whole history of Pharmia. We are converting from a family-owned company with a proud history to a trajectory that is focused on growth and internationalisation.”

Trailmaker helps produce common view about how to execute new strategy  

To help with this transformation phase, Trailmaker was invited to join the process. According to Pekka Kaivola, the restructuring of the ownership at Pharmia meant it was essential to revisit the strategies of Pharmia, and to set clear processes for how to go forward with the operations.

“Trailmaker was brought in because it was essential to have support with this critical strategic process and in the execution of the strategy. The crucial element is that we get everyone in the corporation involved in strategy execution. People must share the visions and common goals of the strategies, otherwise they will fail.”

For CEO Laaksomo, one of the reasons for calling on Trailmaker’s expertise was because they could provide the framework for executing the strategy.

“It’s pretty easy to create the strategy; that’s not the big issue,” he says.

“The key issue is how to execute the strategy; how to make it part of the daily management and daily life in a company. Trailmaker is forcing us to think about the exact approach.

“It’s more like a process, than simply a tool to execute strategy. We have been forced to think about the big picture and slice it into small edible parts. Trailmaker has been challenging the steps forward. This process ensures that everyone has a common view on how to go forward, which is pretty important.”

TRAILMAKER is a concept for faster strategy execution:

• Concrete common view and commitment

• Identified capability needs

• Visibility


Trailmaker customer: CapMan & JAY Solutions. Strategic change requires persistence

JAY Solutions is looking for strong growth. Success in implementing the strategy requires new operating model and consistent work. The execution of the jointly agreed strategy will be ensured with the help of Trailmaker.

CapMan acquired majority ownership in JAM Advisors Oy in 2019. JAM Advisors’ two businesses, wealth management and reporting, are now operated separately. JAY Solutions concentrates on technology-driven reporting, analytics and back office services across the financial services industry. 

Reporting business has been growing rapidly in the past years and JAY Solutions aims at continuing the fast growth.

 “We operate now as an independent company and that’s why we need a big mindset change. So far, we have focused mainly on back-office and support tasks. It is a new situation for us that we are completely responsible for running the entire business”, says Jani Laitinen, CEO of JAY Solutions.

From an engine room to a sales focused organization

Business needs to be made scalable – not everything can be customized.Growth goals also require new partnerships with asset managers, a new organizational structure and also internationalization.

“I see JAY Solutions changing from an engine room to a sales focused organization. We need to invest in sales and clarify our target customers and service offering: What we offer and to whom”, says Atte Rissanen, CapMan Director, Strategy and Business Development.

Rissanen and Laitinen say that change requires persistence, constant communication, discipline and a clear, scheduled plan. Trailmaker is used to ensure that the jointly developed strategy is consistently implemented.

“With Trailmaker, we make sure we stay focused and do the right things. Before we started with Trailmaker we had just made key recruitments, and the time was perfect to clarify the vision and the common view”, says Rissanen.

 The common view of execution and the concrete implementation path were formed in the Trailmaker process.

“Trailmaker has been really valuable to us. Everyone has a lot to do, so the Trailmaker process helped us use time as efficiently as possible. The process is effectively guided. We got clear milestones and tasks for the near future and the lighthouses for a longer-term game. This strategy execution trail guides us to implement the jointly agreed plans”, says Laitinen.

TRAILMAKER is a concept for faster strategy execution:

• Concrete common view and commitment

• Identified capability needs

• Visibility


Trailmaker customer: CapMan and Telia owned company Valokuitunen aims for rapid growth

Valokuitunen, founded jointly by Telia and CapMan Infra in April 2020, aims for strong growth. The business which was previously operated as part of Telia, focuses on building optical fiber networks in Finland. Implementation path for the rapid growth strategy was built in the Trailmaker process.

Valokuitunen aims to be one of the largest fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) network owners and operators in Finland and accelerates the roll-out of fibre infrastructure. Kenneth Hedman, CEO of Valokuitunen, emphasizes the importance of optical fiber as a basis for high-quality telecommunications.

“All data connections travel mostly along the fiber-optic cable. Reliable and fast network connections are a core foundation for modern society. For this reason, CapMan and Telia decided to establish its own, independent company for fiber optic construction.”

Trailmaker structured the strategy into concrete tasks

The optical fiber market in Finland offers an opportunity for growth, but success requires quick decision-making and investments. The business was started at Telia already five years ago, so Valokuitunen had a good starting point for building the strategy. With the help of Trailmaker, the strategy concretized into clear tasks.

“We already had guidelines in place. In the Trailmaker process, we were able to put all thoughts and ideas on the table. In joint sessions between management and the board, we formed a clear plan for how to achieve our goals”, says Hedman.

“First, Trailmaker made us think about the order of priority and secondly make sure things go as planned. Of course, not everything can be done during the first quarter”, Hedman continues.

Trailmaker showed its strength in Valokuitunen – it wasn’t a heavy, months-long strategy process.

“It was a huge benefit that an outsider stepped in and led us through this process. There was no way we ourselves could have gone through such a process in three, four weeks.”

TRAILMAKER is a concept for faster strategy execution:

• Concrete common view and commitment

• Identified capability needs

• Visibility


Trailmaker customer CapMan aims at growth in wealth management

CapMan acquired JAM Advisors Oy in 2019. JAM Advisors’ two businesses, wealth management and reporting, are operated separately starting August 2020. From now on, CapMan Wealth Services (CWS) specializes in wealth management and JAY Solutions concentrates on reporting solutions.

In every moment of major change there is a momentum that must be captured fast. CapMan's CEO Joakim Frimodig sees that the rapid and convincing start of the new business is the key to success.

“The development of specialized high value-add services and the expansion of the customer base are important parts of CapMan’s strategy. CapMan’s objective is to grow wealth management services significantly, now with very scalable solutions also to new client segments”, says Frimodig.

A completely new kind of comprehensive wealth management service offers clients access to the best investment products and a broad understanding of the overall situation of the investor.

CWS offers access to the best public and private managers and instruments, without biases. The House View, a curated assessment of the world of financial markets, is at the centre of the service. Equally essential parts are advanced reporting and analytics as well as visualisation of wealth.

Fast start in the right direction

As the separate CWS business begins, CapMan wants to make the most of the momentum of change. A quick start is seen as paramount.

“It’s important that the new organization and operations are quickly visible in everyday life, and things start to happen differently than before”, Frimodig says.

Christian Borgstöm, Managing Partner of CWS, also stresses the need to get moving rapidly. There is a huge demand for the services and customers are already waiting.

“The sooner we get our deck in order, the faster we’ll be able to meet the needs of our customers. In this situation, we cannot do everything at once – we have to do the right things in the right order”, Borgström emphasizes.

A concrete plan for the coming years

During summer of 2020, CWS finalized its vision. There were plenty of ideas, but a systematic approach and structure was lacking.

“With Trailmaker, we built a concrete plan to implement the strategy for the coming years. The Trailmaker process and the external perspective of the facilitator forced us to discuss things together and also made clear to us what kind of competencies we need to strengthen”, Frimodig says.

Borgström's expectations were exceeded for both the Trailmaker process and Traimaker Management View.

“Now we have a concrete tool that brings the big picture to all of us. All key people can follow how things are progressing and what happens next.”

TRAILMAKER is a concept for faster strategy execution:

• Concrete common view and commitment

• Identified capability needs

• Visibility


Trailmaker customer CapMan: Insplan's growth leap requires new management practice

Insplan Oy, a nationwide electricity, lighting and telecommunications network expert, aims for significant growth with CapMan's support. A fivefold increase in turnover over the next five years will require new ways of organizing activities. Immediate start of the new strategy implementation will be ensured with the help of Trailmaker.

In Insplan, established in 2015, a strong growth has been successful with an entrepreneur-driven culture – it has grown into a company with a turnover of 4 million euros in five years. The growth target requires a new way of managing.

“Growth requires a professional management team. Increased competence level, new structure and clear responsibilities are the keys to success. We divide our sales operations into four areas in Finland in order to get closer to our customers”, lists Mika Seppänen, Insplan's founder and CEO.

Trailmaker enables a shared vision and rapid implementation of the strategy

In the culture of the small company, agility and conversation have played a key role. 

The same alignment is to be maintained as the company grows. After CapMan's investment, a common vision of the strategy was ensured with the help of Trailmaker.

CapMan has used Trailmaker in its portfolio companies to ensure rapid growth and concretize the implementation of the strategy. The Trailmaker process was new to Insplan's management.

“I was surprised by the functionality and efficiency of the concept. In three days, we made extensive strategic decisions together. The milestones created with Trailmaker ensure we do the right things during the next years. Precise steps clarify and speed up the concrete implementation of the strategy”, says Seppänen.

“The Trailmaker process is clear and structured. It involves management well, so Trailmaker is also an excellent concept to get to know the company and its people in charge while creating a common plan for the future”, says Antti Kummu, Chairman of the Board of Insplan and Partner of CapMan.

According to Kummu, the Trailmaker is well-suited also for small businesses because the process is not too heavy.

“A big part of Trailmaker’s value is that the work focuses on very concrete planning. It is valuable for the management that the process produces a concrete implementation path with concrete steps”, says Kummu.

TRAILMAKER is a concept for faster strategy execution:

• Concrete common view and commitment

• Identified capability needs

• Visibility