A leading Finnish user experience and service design agency has chosen Swansea as its new UK headquarters and software development centre where it will create 30 highly skilled jobs with Welsh Government support.
Leadin, which is headquartered in Tampere, looked at a number of locations for its new software centre to support its European growth plans before choosing Swansea where it has links with Swansea University. The investment is backed by £570,000 Welsh Government business finance to support thirty jobs with recuitment now underway.
In five years Leadin has grown from a two man start-up to a service design agency employing nearly forty people delivering highly valued user research, service design and software development services. It anticipates their new UK centre will outgrow its parent company both in terms of sales and personnel within a few years.
Economy Minister Edwina Hart said: ” This is a very welcome and significant investment in high end technology in one of our key sectors that will create highly skilled, well paid graduate level jobs. Research and innovation are at the core of its activities and this is just the type of inward investment we want in Wales.
” Swansea was seen as the optmum location for their growth plans which sends out a strong message that Wales has the high level skills available to support business growth in this sector.”
Leadin’s key focus is helping companies develop and deliver products and services that their customers or end users find attractive, easy and enjoyable to use, regardless of how sophisticated or complex the underlying technology is.
Creating an ’Excellent User Experience’ is based on researching and understanding people’s needs, desires, tasks and workflows and regarded as the key building block for any successful product from car infotainment systems to medical devices to apps.
As well as providing customers with user-friendly technology products, it also helps companies to differentiate their products from competitiors, resulting in higher take up, more sales and increased customer loyalty.
An increasing number of companies are now adopting this approach to ensure the success of their products and services and Leadin’s blue chip customer base includes globally recognised brands like Jaguar Land Rover, ABB and Nokia.
Managing Director of newly established Leadin UK, Harri Mansikkamäki said: “Our close collaboration with Swansea University, welcoming support from Welsh Government, huge buzz on digital services in the UK and of course the business potential which requires our increased presence here, have all contributed to our decision to set up in Swansea. The ground work has been done and now it’s time to put the wheels rolling in full speed.”
Dr. Juha Lehikoinen, Chairman and co-founder of the company said: “Throughout the history of Leadin, we have worked with diverse user segments, in challenging environments and on complex systems. We embrace new technologies but always drive the deployment with user in mind, demystifying and simplifying the underlying complexity of the used solution.
“Our methodologies and professionally enthusiastic attitude have demonstrated good results in various sectors from automotive challenges to big data solutions , from industrial set-ups to healthcare technologies. We are certain that we can repeat our success in the UK.”