Soprano – Lifelong Learning for Working Professionals!
Education is the foundation for a better future. This is true from the perspective of individuals, businesses, communities and societies alike. Finland has believed and invested in education for quite some time. The increasing digitalisation of working life is highlighting the importance of learning even more than before. The need to develop one’s own competence and thinking is continuous. This is why it is Soprano’s mission to bolster lifelong learning among working professionals.
Soprano aims to fulfil its mission through the following measures:
- Providing our customers with the best educational content, methods and technologies available. Our goal is to ensure the best possible customer experience.
- Strengthening the community of enthusiastic individuals which develops services and solutions in an agile manner.
- Developing digital internationally-scaling solutions for education and learning.
Soprano was born in 1984 from entrepreneur Arto Tenhunen’s desire to develop the marketing and communications competence of Finnish companies. However, Soprano as it is now has its roots far deeper in the soil of Nordic education. Soprano’s transition from a development company to a training and education group began in 2013 with the company purchasing Tieturi and Informator, which had already secured notable positions in the education sector. In 2014, Soprano acquired Management Institute of Finland MIF Ltd. which had been formed in 2012 by merging three long-term training companies: JTO, Infor and Fintra.
As such, Soprano’s story is an inseparable part of the Nordic story of developing competence and working life, which has been indelibly impacted by each of Soprano’s education-related brands.
JTO (School of Management)
After World War II, Finland needed new managers and supervisors quickly. The JTO school of management was established in 1946 to train them. In addition to managers and supervisors, JTO now helps HR professionals and specialists develop their professional skills.
With increasing internationalisation, Finland in the 1960s began to suffer from a shortage of export specialists. In order to increase expertise in this area, the Finnish Export Institute (Vientikoulutussäätiö), which later came to be known as the Finnish Institute for International Trade Fintra, was established in 1962. Currently, Fintra helps organisations that are international or have international aspirations to grow and succeed globally.
Tieturi and Informator
Working life in the 1980s went through tumultuous changes as IT began to become more commonplace in work environments. New types of competence were required. Tieturi was established in 1983 to meet Finland’s demand for ICT training and education. Sweden followed suit in 1990 shortly thereafter and established Informator, which was later acquired by Tieturi. At present, Tieturi and Informator help professionals develop the skills required in the increasingly digital working life.
At the beginning of the 1990s, Finland required an increasing amount of continuing education for communications professionals and communications training for managers. Infor, one of the pioneers in the field, was established to meet this need. Now, Infor coaches managers, supervisors and experts on how to communicate in more impactful ways and helps communications professionals shine in their work.
MIF came to be in 2012 when the Confederation of Finnish Industries consolidated its education organisations. The education-related business activities of JTO, Infor and Fintra were combined under the MIF name. The brands were divided into independent operators in 2016. The education group is currently organising professional degree training under the MIF name as well as Soprano’s international training projects.
Soprano Plc is listed on Nasdaq Helsinki.