Thu February 24 12:00 pm 2022 in categories Product news, Company news

Innovators and industry influencers: Nokian Tyres reveals the members of their sustainability innovation challenge grand jury

Nokian Tyres’ open sustainability innovation challenge FAST RACE, BIG CHANGE aims to find the next big innovation for more sustainable tires. The challenge is open for admissions until March 9th, and in April the finalists will get the opportunity to pitch their idea in front of a grand jury consisting of a selected group of industry influencers and innovators.  

Anke Blume (Prof. Dr.) is the Head of the chair of Elastomer Technology and Engineering at the Universiteit Twente, Netherlands. 

Thiemo Fleck is the Editorial Director of auto motor und sport professional, the well-known German automobile magazine with a wide international distribution. 

Inka Mero is the Managing Partner & Founder of Voima Ventures I & II VC Fund, deep tech venture capital fund, as well as a member of the Nokian Tyres Board of Directors. 

Christer Steinsson works for Volvo Cars, one of the most well-known car brands in the world with sales to customers in more than 100 countries. 

Sven Thiele (PhD, Chemistry) is the Senior R&D Leader, Process & Product Development at Synthos, a European chemical company supplying their products to over 100 countries. 

The Nokian Tyres representatives of the jury are the President and CEO Jukka Moisio, SVP, Products & Innovations Jukka Kasi, Head of Global Marketing Reija Laaksonen and Head of R&D Olli Seppälä

Unique pitching in Lapland and a chance to change the future of driving 

The group of finalists attend a unique finals event on April 7th at Nokian Tyres Ivalo Test Center White Hell, in Finnish Lapland, some 300 km above the Arctic Circle. They will be given just one lap to deliver their pitch - speeding on a tire test track in a car driven by one of Nokian Tyres professional test drivers. After the pitch, the grand jury will be given the opportunity to ask the contestants further questions before they deliberate on the winner.   

The winner of the challenge will get the chance to explore a business relationship with Nokian Tyres, to cooperate with the top innovative minds of the Nokian Tyres R&D to craft their idea into reality, draw public attention to their work as well as receive a monetary prize of 10,000 €. 

The FAST RACE, BIG CHANGE challenge: 

  • An open competition by Nokian Tyres inviting startups, businesses, students and academics all over the world and across the industries to innovate for more sustainable tires. 

  • The solution can be a new renewable or recycled material, an innovation that affects the tire’s rolling or wear resistance or a new digital technology application: the entire product lifecycle is open to innovation.  

  • The challenge supports Nokian Tyres’ ambitious goals in terms of sustainability: by the end of 2030, 50% of all raw materials used in the tires will be recycled or renewable, and the CO2 emissions from production will be reduced by 50%.  

Read more about the FAST RACE, BIG CHANGE challenge:  

Download photos:  
Further information: 

Olli Seppälä, Head of Research & Development, tel. +358 407323225,    
[email protected]   

Teemu Soini, Senior Manager, Materials Development, tel. +358442916335   
[email protected] 

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Nokian Tyres develops and manufactures premium tires for people who value safety and sustainability. Inspired by our Scandinavian heritage, we craft innovative products for passenger cars, trucks and heavy machinery that give you peace of mind in all driving conditions. Our Vianor chain provides tire and car services. In 2020, the company’s net sales were EUR 1.3 billion and it employed some 4,600 people. Nokian Tyres is listed on Nasdaq Helsinki. Further information: