In this study, we analyze the characteristics and development of Finnish startups based on firm-level data available in public databases. By startups we refer to young, small, and independent firms holding basic elements for growth. Some 4 000–5 000 of such firms are being established annually, of which 6–7% grow to employ at least 10 workers in three years and have had simultaneously increased their employment by at least 20% per annum. About one third of all startups operate in knowledge intensive services and altogether around 70% in services; only few dozen of new startups are in high-tech manufacturing industries. Approximately 70% of startups survive for at least five years. During this period, their employment has on average doubled. The most intensive growth spurt emerges usually in the very first years after establishing the business. Only a few percent of startups get venture capital investments or public innovation subsidies.