Building success in Kalajoki

Yrittäjä Rauli Salmela Usport liikkeessä Kalajoella

Fitness professional Rauli Salmela returned to his hometown and leads two companies in growing Kalajoki.

Rauli Salmela is a fitness professional known to many in the Oulu area. He has 20 years of experience in the fitness and wellbeing industry and 15 years of entrepreneurship experience in the coaching, group exercise and restaurant businesses. Lately, Salmela returned to his home town Kalajoki, drawn by the possibility to join the active entrepreneur society and growth of Kalajoki.


Kalajoki is a good place to grow your business – and family

The decision to return to his old home town was made when Salmela and his wife Maria heard about the plans to build the Raitti Shopping Village in the Hiekkasärkät tourist centre.

– Raitti was just the right place for a sports equipment shop we had planned a long time. Usport started at the premises in spring 2018.

Usport imports and sells sports clothing and supplements. The clothing brands cannot be bought anywhere else in Finland. Usport was a perfect fit for Raitti, where the shopper is offered unique, high-quality products by many other local businesses.

– Our online store and shop in Raitti draw customers from all around Finland. We have customers coming into the shop all the way from Tampere, for example.

Usport store at Kalajoki
The Usport shop in Raitti draws customers from all around Finland to Kalajoki.

Lately, the Salmela family welcomed a baby girl. Combining work, free time and family life – what a balanced life means for a person’s wellbeing – is a familiar theme to Salmela, also as a professional. In Kalajoki, finding balance is easy.

– We live in the Hiekkasärkät area, surrounded by great outdoor tracks and amazing nature. All the services we need can be found right in the Särkät area, or the city centre a couple of kilometres away. I don’t have to waste time commuting to work or my hobbies – everything is right next door.


The city welcomes new and growing companies

Kalajoki city’s ongoing development projects bring in new inhabitants and tourists, needing new and more comprehensive services. Future investments in the tourism centre, the Kalajoki deep-water harbour and city centre sum up to about 600 million euros.

The growth of Kalajoki and the city’s forward-moving spirit provide a good setting for an entrepreneur. Rauli Salmela’s second company, Tatsi Gym, opened in summer 2019. The gym responds to the growing demand of services in Kalajoki.

– I wanted my hometown to have a quality gym that serves even the most demanding customers. These days, people may even choose their holiday destination based on the availability of top-notch gym services, in order to keep up with their gym regime even while away from home.

A holidaymaker can buy a one-time ticket to Tatsi Gym in their online store. Summer 2019 proved that there’s a lot of demand for the service.

Tatsi Gym in Kalajoki
Rauli Salmela’s second company in Kalajoki, Tatsi Gym, opened in summer 2019.

Salmela is proud to serve both local people and travellers with his two businesses that offer services unmatched in Finland.

– In Kalajoki, the entrepreneurs share a bold spirit. The recent growth in the area is the result of this common, brave attitude between them and the city, and their collaboration.


More information about Usport and Tatsi Gym:

Read more about the growth possibilities for businesses in Kalajoki: