The remote city of Oulu, about 300 miles north of Helsinki, has a population of 140,000, and 18,000 of them work for the more than 800 high-tech companies that operate here. These include branch offices of Nokia, Indian tech giant Wipro, and Pulse, the U.S.-based news-reading app. Local officials work closely with the University of Oulu and businesses to foster innovation through programs like Xpolis, which connects investors to local startups.
CEO Mark Zuckerberg would like to reach the country's 513 million Internet users. Too bad local entrepreneurs have beaten him to the punch.