Kojamo – better urban living since 1969
Valtakunnallinen vuokratalo-osuuskunta, VVO, was founded on 29 January 1969, with the goal of making finding a home easier for people who move to urban areas in pursuit of employment. At that time, the main owner was Rakennusliike Haka Oy.
In 1970, within less than a year of the signing of the memorandum of association, the first rental apartments were completed in Malminiitty, Vantaa. By the end of the 1970s, we operated in 28 municipalities and had more than 5,000 rental apartments.
In the 1980s, the number of our rental apartments grew to nearly 10,000, with operations in 30 municipalities. Since that time, we have cooperated with the residents and offered shared-use facilities for their hobbies and events. Today, shared-use facilities are part of our Lumo services. Cooperation with residents has been renewed and is now carried out through Lumo teams.
In 1997, Valtakunnallinen vuokratalo-osuuskunta VVO was turned into a limited company. Sustainability has always been a part of our operations. Already in the 1990s, the company launched its first environmental programme and energy and environment expert activities.
During the 1990s, the number of our rental apartments grew from 10,000 to 35,000 apartments, located in 60 municipalities. At that time, the company also began to build and offer owner-occupied apartments. This business was given up in 2009.
The first VVO Home Centres (now called Lumo-kotikeskus) were launched in 1995. In addition to providing telephone and digital services, Lumo-kotikeskus centres also serve in all rental and property maintenance issues.
The 1990s was a time of various experiments: In 1997, VVO-sähkö Oy was established to manage the entire Group’s electricity procurement and retail sale operations. The operations of the electricity company were sold to Helsingin Energia in 2007.
In the 2000s, the company reached the position of one of the largest owners of residential properties in Finland and in 2001 it became a public company. The company received the EFQM (European Foundation for Quality Management) certification in a Finnish quality award competition. The company was the first housing sector company to receive the certification, which was awarded on the basis of long-term development of apartment rental operations.
In 2009, the company joined the Rental Property Action Plan (VAETS) under the Property and Building Sector Energy Efficiency Agreement. As part of the Action Plan, we committed to the energy savings target of 7% compared to 2009, to be reached by 2016. We reached this target. We also joined VAETS II in 2016, with the target being 7.5% energy savings by 2025. In the 2010s, the property management quality control system Laaki was implemented throughout the entire property portfolio.
In 2012, Kojamo renewed its strategy to focus on commercial operations. In September 2014, Kojamo adopted the Lumo brand in its commercial apartment rental services. Lumo housing services make everyday life in urban areas easier. They include, for instance, shared-use services, such as shared-use facilities or carsharing, digital services, such as the Lumo webstore (launched in 2015) and the My Lumo web application with which residents can book and order services (launched in 2018).
In early 2016, Kojamo sold 8,571 state-subsidised ARA rental apartments to Kiinteistö Oy M2-Kodit. In summer 2016, Lumo Kodit Oy acquired ICECAPITAL Housing Fund II, which owned 2,274 market-based rental apartments at that time, mainly located in Helsinki, Espoo, Vantaa and Tampere.
The same year Kojamo completed its strategic transformation into a housing investment company. As a result of the transformation, Kojamo’s Annual General Meeting of 2017 decided to change the Group’s name from VVO Group plc to Kojamo plc. Kojamo was listed in the Nasdaq Helsinki stock exchange on 15 June 2018.
We have increased the number of rental apartments systematically over decades. In 2019, we will continue to grow our property portfolio at the pace of approximately 1,000 apartments per year, with the target of 38,000 rental apartments by 2021.
Kojamo is Finland’s largest private housing investment company in terms of the fair value of the investment property. Our investments in rental housing stock during the past five years were approximately EUR 2 billion. Kojamo focuses on seven growth centres in Finland: the Helsinki metropolitan area, Tampere, Turku, Kuopio and Lahti regions and the cities of Oulu and Jyväskylä.
In 2019, as Kojamo celebrates its 50th anniversary, we are still implementing the same mission: to provide good urban living and innovative housing services and to facilitate work-related mobility in Finnish growth centres.
Page updated 19 June 2019