Rotterdam Investment Agency focus on acquisition

Rotterdam Investment Agency focus on acquisition

Rotterdam Investment Agency focus on acquisition


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ong>Investmentong> ong>Agencyong>

ong>focusong> on acquisition

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ong>Investmentong> ong>Agencyong>

ong>focusong> on acquisition

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ong>Rotterdamong> has a very good business environment, and its local government is

business-friendly. For that reason and because of ong>Rotterdamong>’s geographical location,

many multinational and medium-sized Chinese companies are located in ong>Rotterdamong>.’

Dongkui Fang – General Manager of the ong>Rotterdamong> branch of the Bank of China


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ong>Rotterdamong> is a young, international port city, known for its dynamism

and can-do mentality. As Europe’s biggest port and logistics hub,

ong>Rotterdamong> is an ideal base of operations for international companies

and organizations keen on serving the whole of Europe. The newly

created ong>Rotterdamong> ong>Investmentong> ong>Agencyong> has been charged with finding

and attracting companies wanting to establish themselves in ong>Rotterdamong>.

The ong>Rotterdamong> ong>Investmentong> ong>Agencyong> will also provide both new and

existing Dutch and foreign companies in ong>Rotterdamong> with the advice and

support they need to do business, now and in the future.

Marketing ong>Rotterdamong> to the world

In 2008, the Economic Development Board of

ong>Rotterdamong> (EDBR) – the economic advisory body for the

City of ong>Rotterdamong> – recommended that ong>Rotterdamong>

develop a proactive, well-coordinated and precisely

targeted policy to be carried out by a single powerful

agency. ‘We need to recognize the strategic importance

of attracting foreign investment,’ writes the EDBR. As a

result, in the summer of 2009, local government decided

to create the ong>Rotterdamong> ong>Investmentong> ong>Agencyong> as a part of

the City of ong>Rotterdamong> Development Corporation.

The ong>Rotterdamong> ong>Investmentong> ong>Agencyong>’s primary aim is to

attract companies who will invest in the area. The new

organization has a lot of freedom to maneuver. Flexible

and fast on its feet, it has a particularly strong mandate

to go out into the world and promote ong>Rotterdamong> as the

ideal place to do business in Europe and to give new

and well-established foreign and domestic companies in

ong>Rotterdamong> all the support and advice they could possibly


Foreign investment is essential

ong>Investmentong> from abroad is of crucial importance to

the economy of ong>Rotterdamong>. Why is this so? Foreign

companies obviously boost economic activity and bring

jobs. But as an added advantage, foreign companies


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ong>Rotterdamong> is the Dutch city where things get done. It has a no-nonsense attitude and is very

pro-business. The local government is always particularly supportive of the business community

and will help companies achieve their growth objectives. I know the place well because

I moved to ong>Rotterdamong> as a 17-year-old student attending Erasmus University. ong>Rotterdamong>

is a typical port city: dynamic, international, multicultural.’

Peter ter Kulve – Chairman of the Management Board of Unilever Benelux

tend to create considerable indirect employment by

contracting out support services, including legal and

financial services and facilities management. Foreign

businesses also tend to employ more highly educated

people, which allows ong>Rotterdamong> to attract and retain

university-educated residents. Of equal importance is

the fact that foreign companies – and especially foreign

head offices – are part of international networks that

can pave the way for even more investment from

abroad. And, of course, increased foreign investment

enhances ong>Rotterdamong>’s international reputation.

ong>Rotterdamong> has strategic advantage over the


ong>Rotterdamong> is ideally located to serve the EU, the

largest consumer market and economic bloc in the

world. It makes perfect sense for foreign companies to

turn ong>Rotterdamong> – which often already forms the heart

of their logistics operations – into the center for their

economic activities in Europe. ong>Rotterdamong> is Europe’s

biggest and best port and logistics hub and is connected

to the rest of Europe through the widest possible range

of transport options: pipelines, short sea shipping, river

barging, railroad (including a new dedicated cargo rail

line to Germany), roads and air transport (convenient

local airport and easy access to Schiphol Airport). And

thanks to a brand new high-speed passenger rail service,

cities like Amsterdam and Brussels are very easy to reach.

The ong>Rotterdamong> metropolitan area offers excellent ICT

infrastructure and first-rate business-to-business

services. ong>Rotterdamong> is also a growing knowledge center

that is home to the Erasmus University (including the

RSM business school) and two vocational colleges.

The Dutch in general and in particular the residents

of ong>Rotterdamong> have a gift for dealing with people from

other countries. ong>Rotterdamong>’s work force is made up of

well trained, loyal, efficient and hardworking people

who speak multiple languages. Of equal importance is

that the Netherlands has highly competitive real labor

costs, which lie well below those of surrounding

countries. Yet another selling point is the favorable tax

climate in the Netherlands with regard to foreign


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~ support

~ attract

~ ong>focusong>


customer investment decision process


fact finding









~ networking

~ events

~ PR & marketing

~ inform

~ introduce

~ assist







current investor development

acquisition process ong>Rotterdamong> ong>Investmentong> ong>Agencyong>


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companies. Housing prices and cost of living will

pleasantly surprise new arrivals in ong>Rotterdamong>. Likewise,

the cost of renting offices, industrial buildings and

warehouses is also very favorable in comparison to

other Dutch and European regions. ong>Rotterdamong> offers

striking modern architecture. The city boasts a lively arts

and entertainment scene and is best known for its

large-scale live events.

Taking a smart approach

The ong>Rotterdamong> ong>Investmentong> ong>Agencyong> is not planning to

cast a wide net and hope for the best. Instead, the

agency will carefully ong>focusong> its efforts and do so in close

collaboration with its partners in ong>Rotterdamong> and

throughout the Netherlands. Dutch and foreign

companies based in ong>Rotterdamong> realize that there is

much to be gained from cooperation and are working

together to help identify potential investors among their

international contacts – in a show of cooperation

between government and free enterprise that is typical

of ong>Rotterdamong>. These partners include the Port of

ong>Rotterdamong> (which has a global network second to none),

the Chamber of Commerce, the Netherlands Foreign

ong>Investmentong> ong>Agencyong>, the ong>Rotterdamong> Port Promotion

Council, real estate companies, law firms, tax

consultants, and even other cities in the region.

It is the job of the ong>Rotterdamong> ong>Investmentong> ong>Agencyong> to

locate potential Dutch and foreign companies and

persuade them to establish operations in ong>Rotterdamong>.

Once they have done so, it is important that these

companies come to feel at home in ong>Rotterdamong> so that

they will stay, hopefully expand their operations, and

maybe even help ong>Rotterdamong> attract more companies

from their own economic sectors or geographic regions.

Red-carpet treatment for newcomers

With the help of its partners, the ong>Rotterdamong>

ong>Investmentong> ong>Agencyong> will first identify prospects. Good

business intelligence – including the development and

use of good information structures and the use of

existing news sources – is the key to success. In

approaching potential new investors, ong>Rotterdamong> will use

a variety of methods, including: regular PR and

marketing, special events, networking through existing

contacts who know the companies in question, and

old-fashioned door-to-door sales. If a company puts

ong>Rotterdamong> on its shortlist, the ong>Rotterdamong> ong>Investmentong>

ong>Agencyong> will give it special support by organizing factfinding

trips to ong>Rotterdamong>. The candidates will receive

further help and information, including introductions to

business-to-business services that assist newcomers in

getting settled, such as real-estate agencies, law firms,

tax consultants, etc. Existing local businesses will show

prospective companies around and give an honest

account of what it is like to do business in ong>Rotterdamong>.

Once companies have decided that ong>Rotterdamong> is the

place they are going to put down roots, they will receive

the red carpet treatment from the ong>Rotterdamong> ong>Investmentong>

ong>Agencyong>. Each company coming to ong>Rotterdamong> will be

regarded as a key account whose wishes and

requirements will be catered to by a key account

manager at the ong>Rotterdamong> ong>Investmentong> ong>Agencyong>.

Helping newcomers sort out the paperwork involved

in setting up their operations in ong>Rotterdamong> is a highly

appreciated service. ong>Rotterdamong> also has the Expat Desk,

an integrated part of the ong>Rotterdamong> ong>Investmentong> ong>Agencyong>.

Among other activities, the Expat Desk helps employees

working for foreign companies settle in the Netherlands

and solve any practical issues they may have. Equally

noteworthy is that ong>Rotterdamong> companies will sit down

at the table with new companies on a regular basis and

help them to find their bearings in a new environment.

Existing foreign businesses take pride of place

And it is not only new arrivals that will notice a fresh

wind blowing in ong>Rotterdamong>. In helping the ‘new kids on

the block’ settle in, the ong>Rotterdamong> ong>Investmentong> ong>Agencyong> is

also strengthening its ties with existing companies –

both foreign and Dutch – with the aim of better serving

their needs, giving them the feeling that they are very

much welcome here, and hopefully ensuring that they

stay in ong>Rotterdamong> and possibly even expand their

operations. This activity is known as current investor

development. Experience has shown that a great deal of

investment comes from existing companies expanding


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‘My impression is that ong>Rotterdamong> is a very efficient city. Everything works here. It is easy to get

around thank to excellent public transport. The healthcare system is great, with even hospital

appointments being very easy and simple. ong>Rotterdamong> is a hidden gem. The music and art scene

are very attractive.’

George Yip – dean of the RSM Business School, Erasmus University ong>Rotterdamong>

‘Brazil’s economy is clearly on the move. We’ve opted for ong>Rotterdamong> because it’s the gateway to


Mr Samir Awad – Managing Director of Petrobras Netherlands BV


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their local operations. In its efforts to attract and retain

economic activities, the ong>Rotterdamong> ong>Investmentong> ong>Agencyong>

will also pay special attention to established companies

in ong>Rotterdamong> and help them wherever possible.

Moreover, feedback from established companies is

particularly valuable for fine-tuning what the ong>Rotterdamong>

ong>Investmentong> ong>Agencyong> needs to do in order to attract and

retain foreign companies. In fact, many firms in

ong>Rotterdamong> are willing to recommend ong>Rotterdamong> as an

excellent place to locate a company. These companies’

foreign and domestic contacts and the testimonials they

can provide about ong>Rotterdamong> to prospective companies

are extremely valuable.

To emphasize ong>Rotterdamong>’s appreciation for the

presence of both Dutch and foreign companies in

ong>Rotterdamong>, their representatives will receive invitations

to regular Red Carpet Events in ong>Rotterdamong>. At these

events, they will have access to top-level decisionmakers

in government and the corporate world. The

ong>Rotterdamong> ong>Investmentong> ong>Agencyong> will play a leading role in

boosting the ong>Rotterdamong> economy with this broad range

of tasks.

Focus on the most promising countries and sectors

For now, the ong>Rotterdamong> ong>Investmentong> ong>Agencyong> will

mainly concentrate its efforts on those countries and

economic sectors where the most headway can be

made. The targeted countries are those that already

have strong economic ties with the Netherlands, as well

as high-growth economies:

~~ Germany

~~ United Kingdom

~~ United States

~~ Brazil

~~ India

~~ China

~~ Turkey

Each of the seven countries mentioned will be the

responsibility of one or more key account managers

with thorough knowledge of that nation, culture,

language and economy. It goes without saying that

investors from other countries showing an interest in

coming to ong>Rotterdamong> will also receive a very warm

welcome. The ong>Rotterdamong> ong>Investmentong> ong>Agencyong> will

continuously evaluate all countries for the business

opportunities they present. Although all industries are

being considered, the ong>Rotterdamong> ong>Investmentong> ong>Agencyong>

has identified several economic areas that hold extra

appeal to new companies and investors. These focal

areas are:

~~ port-related business and industry

~~ the medical and healthcare sector, including the

world-renowned Erasmus Medical Center

~~ the creative sector, including everything from

advertising, fashion, TV and computer gaming to

product design and architecture

~~ business-to-business services

These and other economic sectors will be evaluated

regularly for the business opportunities they might

present. While rolling out the red carpet for all

corporate newcomers, the ong>Rotterdamong> ong>Investmentong>

ong>Agencyong> will ong>focusong> in particular on those potential

investors that:

~~ can create a great many jobs

~~ carry out innovative activities

~~ have a lot of growth potential

~~ are likely to attract new economic activity and

encourage the development of business clusters,

including spin-offs, suppliers, b-to-b services and


Making dreams come true in ong>Rotterdamong>

As new entrepreneurs in ong>Rotterdamong> will soon

discover, the locals show great enthusiasm and

determination in tackling new challenges but keep both

feet firmly planted on the ground. Clearly, local

residents have taken to heart what Desiderius Erasmus

– the Renaissance scholar and ong>Rotterdamong>’s most famous

son – told them nearly five centuries ago: ‘There are

some people who live in a dream world; there are some

who face reality; and then there are those who turn one

into the other.’


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‘We are very proud that we’ve been No. 1 in clinical medicine in Europe over the past 10 years,

beating Oxford and Cambridge into second and third place. With our new hospital building, we

are ready for the 21st century. We aim to further strengthen our position as one of the world’s

strongest medical players in medical care, training and research.’

Hans Büller – Chairman of the Management Board of Erasmus Medical Center


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ong>Rotterdamong> is a well organized city. For example, it has good public transportation, which makes

it easy to get around here. Within 20 minutes, you can reach Schiphol Airport and then fly to the

rest of the world. Very convenient.’

Alexandre Elias – General Manager of Braskem Europe B.V.


The ong>Rotterdamong> ong>Investmentong> ong>Agencyong> is part of

the Development Corporation ong>Rotterdamong>,

City of ong>Rotterdamong>

ong>Rotterdamong> ong>Investmentong> ong>Agencyong>

World Trade Center

Beursplein 37, 3 rd floor

P.O. Box 6575

3002 AN ong>Rotterdamong>

The Netherlands

T + 31 (0)10 205 28 72

+ 31 (0)10 205 37 75

E info@rotterdaminvestmentagency.nl

W www.rotterdaminvestmentagency.nl

Graphic design

Proforma, designers and consultants, ong>Rotterdamong>

Printed by

Veenman Drukkers


ong>Rotterdamong> Image Bank, Jan van der Ploeg,

Annet Delfgaauw


Datum: februari 2010 Oplage: 2000

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Datum: februari 2010 Oplage: 2000

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