Our history

The story behind the brick walls – from a cotton mill to offices

Palosaaren Yrityskeskus’s stylishly renovated premises are located in a factory building that is more than 160 years old and has great cultural and historical significance. Cotton yarn and cotton fabrics were still being produced in the current premises as late as in 1979.

Cotton production from 1859 to 1979

The factory called Wasa Bomulls Manufaktur Aktiebolag was the first industrial plant to be built on the seafront in the newly built town after most of Vaasa had burned down in 1852. The factory, founded by August Alexander Levón, started its operations in 1859. In its very first year, it employed 188 people. For the first 10 years, the factory manufactured only cotton yarn, after which the weaving of fabrics was also begun. In its almost 100 years of operation, the factory produced sewing thread, paper twine, paper cloth, fishing nets and wadding.

In 1928, the company was renamed Vaasan Puuvilla Oy – Vasa Bomulls Ab. The company reached its highest number of employees in 1936 when it employed a total of 1,445 people.

Later, the factory’s profitability began to decline, and as a result, Vaasan Puuvilla merged with Finlayson in 1964. However, the factory could not be revived even as part of Finlayson and so it ceased operations in 1980.

From a factory to an office building and university campus

In 1981, the City of Vaasa bought the Finlayson property for FIM 12.5 million.

The total area purchased by the City of Vaasa was 10 hectares, of which the City sold 6.2 hectares to the state. In 1985, the planning of a new university campus began and today it is known as one of the most beautiful campuses in the world.

The City of Vaasa established Palosaaren Yrityskeskus in 1982. The company started to renovate and rent out the premises of the former cotton mill to small and medium-sized enterprises.