Back to News

IceTech – Report

On 29th February 2024, ICTOulu complimented the Polar Bear Pitching experience by hosting a dynamic all-day conference; IceTech Summit!  

This conference report will delve into the day’s program, offering a comprehensive overview of the insightful keynote presentations and engaging panel discussions. Specifically, it will spotlight the convergence of cutting-edge technologies, focusing on two key topics:  

  • Printed Intelligence  
  • AI 

Through separate sections, we’ll explore the latest advancements and the future landscape of these dynamic fields. 

The conference flourished with captivating discussions, as the audience delved into the ever-evolving worlds of hardware and software. Participants were immersed in a dynamic exchange of ideas and the vibrant showcase of companies provided broad opportunities for networking and exploration, enriching the experience for all throughout the day. 

Shaping Tomorrow’s Tech: Takeaways from Printed Electronics Keynote 

The morning conference started with networking alongside coffee followed by a short introduction and opening remarks from our host and Specialist at BusinessOulu, Max Raymond.  

The first keynote of the first part of the morning conference featured Antti Keränen, the CTO and Co-Founder of TactoTek, renowned for his pioneering work in structural electronics. With over a decade of expertise in in-mold electronics, Keränen is the perfect person to illuminate the audience with the latest advancements and invaluable insights in this field. 

Antti Keränen’s presentation provided a comprehensive overview of in-mold electronics, engaging the audience with insights into the design evolution of electronic devices. He delved into the disruptive potential of In-Mold Structural Electronics (IMSE), emphasizing how it enables the transformation of flat materials into curved shapes. He detailed the manufacturing process, which includes printing surface mounting, forming curved shapes with components, and injection molding. 

Transitioning to market insights, Keränen highlighted emerging automotive trends such as connectivity, comfort, and sustainability, pointing out the significance of adapting to new vehicle types. He underlined the importance of cost efficiency in accelerating industry innovation. 

In closing, Keränen emphasized the sustainability aspect of IMSE technology, showcasing its industry-leading environmental performance and its pivotal role in shaping a more sustainable future for electronics manufacturing. 

After this insightful keynote, a thought-provoking Q&A session followed, allowing the audience to take the lead and ask any questions that arose during the speech. 

Panel Discussion: Inspirational Dialogues in the World of Printed and In-Mold Electronics 

The panel, expertly moderated by Satu Väinämö, Director at PrintoCent, featured key industry contributors from Oulu’s thriving tech scene. Jani-Mikael Kuusisto, CEO and Co-founder of The Warming Surfaces Company, Mikko Paakkolanvaara, CTO at Screentec, and Paavo Niskala, SVP IMSE Technology at TactoTek, provided valuable insights into the realm of printed electronics.  

This session served as a platform to spotlight Oulu-based companies, specifically those within the PrintoCent cluster, showcasing their impactful contributions to the field. The panel highlighted the collaborative spirit inherent in Oulu, making it a truly impactful and innovative part of Oulu’s ICT cluster, tied together by many years of research and experience. Discussions also explored the potential transformative power of printed intelligence and its capacity to revolutionize industries across diverse sectors. 

After the panel discussion, we proceeded with a lunch break, providing participants with an opportunity to network further. Simultaneously, a matchmaking session took place, fostering connections and collaborations among attendees. 

AI Revolution- A Northern Perspective: Insights from Keynote on AI  

The afternoon section of the conference started with the keynote presentation by Tero Ojanperä, Chairman and Co-Founder of Silo AI which is one of Europe’s largest private AI labs. He is also a Professor of Practice on Intelligent Platforms at Aalto University, Finland. Previously, he was Nokia’s CTO and Chief Strategy Officer and served on its executive board. Dr. Ojanperä latest book “AI Revolution – The Handbook” with an in-depth look at the underlying technology of large language models, their diverse applications, and societal impacts. He is also a co-author of the influential book “Platform Strategy: Transform Your Business with AI, Platforms and Human Intelligence” which provides a blueprint for businesses navigating the digital age. In short, with his wealth of knowledge, Dr. Ojanperä is uniquely placed to explore the latest AI trends and developments at this conference. 

Dr. Ojanperä’s keynote presentation fascinated the audience from the beginning, reviewing the innovation wave of AI. With a focus on Large Language Models (LLMs), he demonstrated how these are driving transformative change across industries. Through AI-generated videos and design examples, Dr. Ojanperä vividly illustrated the diverse ways the technologies can enhance various sectors. He then explored different approaches to implementing generative AI, highlighting its potential while acknowledging challenges, such as the “AirCanada AI chatbot case.” 

Concluding with glimpses of new innovations like humanoid robot workers, Dr. Ojanperä left the audience with a wealth of insights and ideas. The engaging session motivated lively participation, prompting several questions during the Q&A session that followed the keynote presentation. 

Panel Discussion: Insights on Regulations, Talent Development, and Public Perception 

The panel discussion moderated by Max Raymond, ICT Specialist at BusinessOulu, ICTOulu, featured Erkki Lohiniva, CEO and Founder of; Pekka Vuorio, Co-founder and Cloud Data Architect at Brightly Works; and Tero Ojanperä, Chairman and Co-Founder of Silo AI. 

The panel covered many aspects of AI’s evolution and its implications. The discussion covered the ongoing development of the EU AI Act and its potential impact on their work and the sector at large and pondered the importance of Google’s investment in AI training. Additionally, they discussed the increasing importance of AI proficiency in tech startup team building and speculated on the evolving task lists of designers and creators in the next decade, as well as Finland’s position in the global AI landscape, considering its potential for growth.    

As for the public perception of AI, the specialists shared insights about common discussed strategies for demystifying the technology.   

It was a privilege to host a panel discussion featuring specialists and experts from Oulu-based companies, showcasing their invaluable contributions to the field of AI. 

We would like to give a huge thank you to: 

  • All the speakers and panellists that took part in the IceTech Summit as a part of Polar Bear Pitching;  
  • The staff at Radisson Blu Hotel Oulu; 
  • Our sponsors – Fingersoft, Netox and OP Pohjala. 

Last, but not least, thank you to everyone who made IceTech Summit a memorable event.