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FKA launches a group for business women of foreign origin

23. apr. 2018

IMG_0043FKA is proud to announce that it has launched FKA New Icelanders for businesswomen of foreign origin. This group will be within the FKA International Committee. Our objective is to create an ecosystem, provide networking and support for New Icelanders who are looking to start a business (store, hair salon, tourism, import/export), or are specialists, manager or leaders within a company. It was also wonderful to hear that the Ministry of Social Affairs have congratulated FKA on this new initiative.

IMG_0055On 17 April 2018, FKA hosted a workshop with women interested to join this new group. Nearly 30 women attended representing a range of businesses, such as Össur, Nice Veisluþjónusta, Nordic Direct Imports, Afrozone, Bioeffect, Island Treasures / Menopause Morph and Austur-Índiafélagið to name a few.  


IMG_0067Presenters at the workshop included Hrafnhildur Hafsteinsdóttir (Managing Director of FKA), Danielle Pamela Neben (Vice Chairman of FKA), Jóhanna Jafetsdóttir (Chair of the FKA International Committee) and Íris Gísladóttir (Member of the FKA Youth Committee).

We received fantastic feedback in terms of what support is needed, topics of interest, frequency to meet and the link into the wider FKA network. Below is a summarised list of topics of interest:

·       One stop shop (website, checklists): how to find information to set up and run a business

·       Tax information: does it apply when doing international consultancy, overseas pensions, tax exemptoins for foreign talent and the need to be able to file business taxes in English and other languages (such as is the case for personal tax filings in Iceland)

·       Regulatory information: licenses, salary levels, HR requirements, rules and laws applyig to specific fields of business.

·       Property: information on properties to either rent or buy.

·       Bank accounts and loans: information on opening accounts and applying for credit.

·       Grants: How to apply for grants, having mentors to support and Icelandic co-sponsors for the application

·       Mentors: setting up a mentor program similar as the one between FKA Youth (FKA Framtíð) and the FKA Leadership Division (LeiðtogaAuður)

·       Networking and the bridge between FKA New Icelanders & the general FKA group: The importance of integrating FKA New Icelanders within the overall FKA group for networking and integration within the Icelandic business society

·       Create an initiative to highlight the deep amount of talent from within FKA New Icelanders: many new Icelanders bring talent and a wide range of expertise to Iceland, with little visibility. The question is how to promote the visibility of this talent pool and be seen as positive contributors to the Icelandic society.

·       Work experience/internships: the most challenging point is getting a foot in the door to companies for interviews for the opportunity for jobs and even internships.

·       Courses on how to start a company: ranging from one week courses to information on available courses in the market, e.g. Nýsköpunarmiðstöð

It was also suggested that we should have monthly meetings at the minimum, and even weekly meetings.

Facebook page for FKA New Icelanders

A Facebook page has been created for those of you who would like to know of upcoming events. Do join on FKA New Icelanders.

Next steps

IMG_0039_1524473386343As part of the next steps, there will be three persons appointed onto the FKA International Committee, who are current members of FKA and FKA New Icelanders. Danielle Neben will help to lead this initiative. While there are only three members for the committee, projects will be initiated to address the suggestions above. This will require much help from the women in this group to drive this forward.

The aim is to launch in September 2018. However, with the incredibly positive feedback received at and after the meeting, we will look to having informal meet-ups beforehand until the official launch.

For any suggestions, feedback or comments, please do join us on the Facebook page FKA New Icelanders.


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