About

My name is Eva Wissenz. I’m a social and impact entrepreneur based in Tampere, Finland. I am the founder of Sepia Agency and the co-founder and chairperson of Solar Fire Concentration Oy. Before moving to Finland, I had a long career as free-lance and corporate in France. I wrote 12 books published in French.

My DNA is entrepreneurship with purpose, I have done it all and that’s why I want to help you to have a real impact in life. My experiences working as a corporate, a free-lance and entrepreneur, have made me flexible, rigorous, organized, creative. I’m passionate about sustainability and focused on ethics and quality.

I have 8 years experience managing international partnerships, handling communications, providing mission logistics in developing countries (India, Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Haiti, South Africa), and multi-cultural team management for my company. I worked at the intersection of clean tech, education and agro-food sectors.

Before I became an entrepreneur in Finland, my first background is in education and I was assistant in literature during my PhD at Paris-La Sorbonne. I wrote and published 12 books in French (novels and poetry). I worked many years in Paris as an editor, author, journalist and translator- with a special focus on culture, sustainable tourism, agriculture, food, positive communication and clean energy. I have been Director of Publications of Paris Tourism Office and Website Chief Editor implementing the communication strategy with supervision of several collections, management of Paris city guides, brochures and maps in 9 languages, production of all internal reports and transition to use of recycled paper.

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Speaker

2020:
- SustainabilityMe, Turku University.
- Speaker invited by Johto ry and MBA faculty to present my approach of impact
entrepreneurship at Johtajuussymposium (Tampere Leadership Symposium).
- Talk about "Sustainability and Marketing: embody your values", Learning Lab, TAMK.
- Organizing "Shaking Traditions in Finland - a Skoll Forum eco system event" with 6 other Finnish impact entrepreneurs.
- Speaker invited at the Responsible Business Research seminar organized by Tampere University and Respman (Responsible Management Research Group).
- Tribecast - Podcast for Tribe Tampere about the difficulty for SME’s to transition to sustainability and my work at the University.
2019:
- Speaker at Stream Festival in Tampere.
- Speaker at Waves Festival of Aalto University of Helsinki about impact entrepreneurship.
- Speaker at Lahti Lappeenranta University (Finland) at a conference about "Sustainable Grands Challenges".
- Invited delegate by Autodesk Foundation at Skoll Forum for impact and social entrepreneurs in Oxford (blog).
2017-2018:
- Contribution to the AlterCoop training :"Cooperation in action - take inspiration from committed people".
- Speaker about solar energy for vulnerable populations at Marjolaine Fair for Sustainable Lifestyles, Paris.

Mentoring

Mr Juha Kaario (COO and Chairman Of the Board at Newelo Oy) was my mentor to launch Sepia Agency as part of the City of Tampere and Pirkamaan Yrityskummiyhdistys Ry program.
I’ve been a mentor in 2019-2020 for Hidden Gems in Tampere and during the 2019 Startup Weekend Sustainability.

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2012-2019: Solar Fire/GoSol

Between 2013 and 2020, I have been Executive Director and CEO of Solar Fire Concentration Oy, an impact and social engineering company, and then Chairperson of the Board. I have concentrated my effort on the development of international projects with our branch GoSol.

I worked closely with multiple partners: Autodesk Foundation, Silicon Valley Community Foundation, Plan International Finland and Uganda, Finnish energy company Wärtsilä, Finnpartnership, Carbon Cycle in the Philippines, World Vision Finland and Kenya, Global Resource Alliance NGO in Tanzania, Deloitte Foundation, Tamk, Rexel Foundation, Finnvera and the University of Berkeley. We also have developed trainings for young entrepreneurs and we’ve been working in Haïti, Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, India, Philippines, Amazonia and Europe.

Under the brand Lytefire, the company is also developing a wide range of services for solar entrepreneurs, including now a solar sauna created for a resort in the Swiss Alps.

1990-2017: Communication and Publishing activities

Before becoming an entrepreneur in Finland, I worked as freelance and corporate in the art and tourism industry in Paris for many years. I was also a free-lance journalist and blogger.

  • Chief Editor and Editor in Tourism:
    > I have been Chief Publisher/Editor at the Paris Convention and Visitors Bureau during 2 years. This role consisted of overseeing various collections of publications, including city guides, brochures and maps in 9 languages, as well as internal reports and annual reports. I also oversaw the conversion of publications from new material to recycled and was responsible for the editorial section of the website, www.parisinfo.com.
    > Chief Editor of 6 Paris city guides for Zurban newspaper.
    > Comptoirs du Monde travel agency (Paris): I wrote new guides about Uganda and Finland and updated contents of their website related to New Zealand, Brazil, Senegal, Namibia, Kenya, Ireland and Scotland, Greece.
    > Michelin: during 3 years, I researched and wrote eight new guides, notably in Cuba, in Greece and in Italy.
    > Nomade Aventure: I edited the new version of this travel agency website.
    > At Hachette Group I edited and proofread 32 travel guides and participated in the creation of 4 new titles.

  • Editor in Art:
    J. Kugel Gallery is regarded as one of the most prestigious international antique galleries. During 10 years, I had the privilege of working directly with Alexis Kugel who entrusted me with the editorial catalogs of six exhibitions.

  • Organizing events for Modern Art scene:
    In 2001-2002, I organized conferences at the Modern Art Museum of Centre Pompidou in Paris for the Revues Parlées de Marianne Alphant. I also edited the catalog for the retrospective of designer Fabrice Praeger.

  • Writing and translating:
    > From 2012 to 2018, I created and ran Seepia Publishing House with 16 titles in its catalog. Read here for more about it. Before that, I translated a dozen books from Italian and English Literature into French, I have adapted eco-manga novels and wrote subtitles for French-Italian theater productions. I wrote and published about 12 books in French (novels and poetry).
    In Finland, I worked with Suomen luomumatkailuyhdistys ECEAT Suomi ry and Tampereen ensi- ja turvakoti ry in 2012.