400 Small Businesses Form New Association Skip to content

400 Small Businesses Form New Association

By Yelena

downtown Reykjavík
Photo: Golli.

Around 400 small and medium-sized businesses have registered in a new association that was formed yesterday, RÚV reports. The association, called Atvinnufjelag, will take part in contract negotiations separately from the Confederation of Iceland Enterprise (SA) in order to give a voice to smaller businessses.

“Over 99% of associations in Iceland are small and medium-size businesses and independent workers,” stated Arna Þorsteinsdóttir, one of the founders of the new association and co-owner of ad agency Sahara. The new association’s preparatory board says smaller businesses need a bigger seat at the table. “What’s not working with SA is the voting system. The bigger a business is, the more votes you have, the more weight you have. So it’s more likely that bigger businesses call the shots.”

The premise of the new association is that each company will have one vote, regardless of its size, setting up a majority rule. Arna says smaller companies have felt they do not have enough of a voice within SA. “Especially during COVID, certain response measures were requested for small and medium-size businesses that did not get support.”

The association’s founding statement asserts that Iceland’s taxation system is unequal and should take into account the size and scope of businesses’ operations. The association states it will negotiate contracts on behalf of its members and do so independently from SA. Arna hopes, however, “that there will be an open discussion and talks. We recognise that we are sort of gatecrashers here but we just want to get to the table.”

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