Island Spirit Meets Innovation: Faroe Islands’ Women Forge Their Own Business Path

In the spotlight: Some inspiring women entrepreneurs in Faroe Islands

#FaroeIslandWomen #WomenEntrepreneurs #IslandBusiness #BreakingBarriers #FemaleEmpowerment #ChallengingTheNorm #SustainableSuccess

Nestled in the North Atlantic Ocean, a dot of rugged beauty called the Faroe Islands conceals a thriving entrepreneurial spirit. Despite its small size and remote location, the islands boast of a surprisingly high number of women business-owners, defying traditional gender roles in the typically male-dominated world of commerce.

While navigating business in this isolated archipelago poses unique challenges. It varies from limited resources to a lack of government regulation. And it’s not all stormy seas. The absence of red tape allows for agile operations, and a strong reliance on local resources fosters environmental consciousness and sustainable practices.

But the real secret sauce lies in the Faroese spirit itself. Family ties run deep – fostering a collaborative, supportive business environment where women find camaraderie and mentors among their peers. They overcome the initial hurdle of male skepticism with sheer grit and determination – carving their own niche in the island’s economic landscape.

Many inspiring women entrepreneurs are shaping the Faroe Islands’ business landscape. Their dedication, innovation, and connection to their island home are setting a remarkable example for future generations. From charming local shops to innovative sustainable ventures, Faroese women are rewriting the narrative of island life. Their stories are an inspiration, proving that even amidst isolated cliffs and roaring waves, the entrepreneurial spirit can flourish, powered by resilience, resourcefulness, and a dash of island magic.

So, the Faroe Islands, an archipelago north of Scotland. It may be small in size, but it boasts of a thriving community of women entrepreneurs making their mark in various industries.

Here are some inspiring women entrepreneurs from Faroe Islands.

> Harriet Olafsdóttir av Gørðum, Co-owner, Hanusarstova

A multi-faceted entrepreneur, Harriet Olafsdóttir av Gørðum is a true millennial entrepreneur juggling photography, farming and hospitality as she is running Deplar Farm, a fifth-generation family farm she took over. She not only manages the livestock and traditional Faroese farming practices but also uses her photography skills to capture the beauty of the islands and attract guests to her charming farmhouse B&B.

She and her husband bought a 121 year-old house – Æðuvík, on the island of Eysturoy.  Harriet and her husband now live and work on Hanusarstova, their mixed-use sheep farm and inn, where visitors can experience the Faroe Islands like a local.

> Katrin Baerentsen: Surfer & LGBTQ+ Activist

Like most Faroese adolescents of her time, Katrin Baerentsen also imagined moving away as soon as she grew older. She got her first taste of life on the outside, during a study abroad exchange to the United States from 2007-2008. She returned and saw that there were changes that needed to be made locally. She wanted to make a difference, and started the LGBTQ+ Faroe Islands society.

The Faroese Parliament legalized same-sex marriage in 2016, though their government is still considered relatively less liberal compared to other Nordic countries.  Along with her LGBTQ+ advocacy work, she missed surfing, which she first learned during her time in Santa Cruz, California. Upon her return, she was determined to figure it out and she now runs Faroe Islands Surf Guide, the islands’ unofficial host for any folks looking to surf.

> Durita Højgaard Olsen, Founder, BLÍK

Founder of the Faroese fashion brand BLÍK, Durita Højgaard Olsen brings the essence of the islands’ stunning landscapes and rich cultural heritage to life through her knitwear designs. Her use of traditional Faroese knitting techniques and locally sourced materials has gained her international recognition. One can spot BLÍK garments adorning celebrities and gets featured in renowned fashion magazines too.

> Berglín Johannesen & Elin Sólsdóttir, Founder, Kring!

Berglín Johannesen & Elin Sólsdóttir are really the powerhouse duo behind Kring!, a company focusing on sustainable food production and education. They run a micro-farm where they cultivate organic vegetables and herbs, and also organize workshops and events to raise awareness about healthy eating and environmental responsibility.

> Hrund í Hoyvík & Annga í Hoyvík, Co-Founders, Í HOYVÍK

Hrund í Hoyvík & Annga í Hoyvík are the creative minds behind Í HOYVÍK, a design studio specializing in handcrafted knitwear, accessories, and homeware. Their unique pieces, inspired by Faroese nature and folklore, showcases the beauty and skill of traditional Faroese crafts. All this have led to them having a loyal following too.

> Anna Kirstin Thomsen, Owner, Pub and Café

Anna Kirstin Thomsen is a Faroese woman living in Tvøroyri in the Faroe Islands. In 2008, she won the Faroese Literature Prize for cultural achievement. She currently runs the Pub and Café, a pub and a café that also functions as a museum. She also manages the Sail Loft, a cultural centre.

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