Aki Mäkivirta wins CTO of the Year Award

null Aki Mäkivirta wins CTO of the Year Award

Aki Mäkivirta wins CTO of the Year Award

We are hugely proud of our R&D Director Aki Mäkivirta, who along with Jani Vilenius of Sandvik has just won the 10th annual CTO of the Year Award here in Finland.

The Awards are given by Business Finland and Technology Industries of Finland in cooperation with Spinverse, to highlight the importance of the work that Chief Technology Officers undertake to ensure the future competitiveness of Finnish industries. The judging panel was chaired by Business Finland’s Nina Kopola and consisted of leading Finnish technology influencers, with Aki and Jani both being recognised for the contributions they have each made over the past year, and the way that they have improved the technological competences and growth potential of their companies, acted as inspiring leaders, and have been active participants in societal discussion.

Both winners – Jani in the large company category and Aki in the SME category – were announced at the CTO Forum in Helsinki last week, an event which this year focused on sustainable and smart manufacturing: subjects very close to our hearts at Genelec.

Aki joined Genelec in 1995, and brought huge expertise in Digital Signal Processing from his previous role at the Nokia Research Centre. Having skillfully shown us how he could replace the analogue filters of our iconic 1031A monitor with entirely digital processing, Aki joined our R&D team to pioneer the creation of the original 8200 range – our very first Smart Active Monitors ¬– finally becoming R&D director in 2013.

Aki is universally recognised throughout the audio industry as a multi-talented technology leader, a published researcher and a knowledgeable lecturer, and he has greatly contributed to our global success and to many technical innovations in his field of expertise.

In his characteristically modest way, Aki declares that:

“R&D is not just the result of an individual’s work, but teamwork – where everyone’s contribution counts. It is complemented by good connections to the world of academic research, which helps to transfer the latest know-how. I am so privileged to have been able to work for a company like Genelec, with the most talented experts in their field as my colleagues.”

Pekka Koponen, the founder of Spinverse, adds:

“Spinverse has had the privilege of bestowing these awards for 10 years now, and during this period, the role of a company’s technology leaders has gained increasing significance and has become more diverse in introducing technologies to all areas of the company. Technology leaders play an important role in contributing to Finland’s goal of increasing the funding of R&D by 4% of GDP.”

Business Finland’s Nina Kopola concludes by saying:

“Technology plays a key role in the creation of a sustainable future. The growth stories for both Genelec and Sandvik are exemplary, and both winners represent outstanding expertise in both sustainable technologies and in demonstrating innovation in their work.”

In addition to recognising the work of Aki and Jani, we’d also like to offer our congratulations to all the runners-up this year, namely Mats Sundell of Mirka and Hannu Mäntymaa of Wärtsilä in the large company category, and Samuel Myllykangas of Blueprint Genetics and Jyri Öörni of Merus Power Dynamics Oy in the SME category.

Click here to read Aki’s full acceptance speech, and to learn more about Aki’s work click here.

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