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Globalizer innovationquarter-dutchbasecamp-the-hague-security-delta

Recently, InnovationQuarter and DutchBasecamp hosted the second session of the Globaliser Cybersecurity. Supported by HSD, this 12-week program is dedicated to the international growth of cybersecurity scale-ups. Last month, the participants kicked-off the program with a first session on client segmentation. Discussing reasons to internationalise and creating detailed customer profiles set the stage for the second session of the program: the target markets analysis.

Globalizer innovationquarter-dutchbasecamp-the-hague-security-deltaDuring this session, key aspects such as re-evaluating USPs, selecting target markets, and determining key indicators for market attractiveness were discussed. These are all fundamental concepts in making an educated decision on which countries to start doing business in. Yet, the session was also largely focused on finding the right balance between conscious choices and entrepreneurial gut feeling. Matthijs Blokker, director at The Hague-based company MMOX found this a specifically important aspect of this Globaliser session, and commented: “I am very happy with the structural approach of the sessions so far; the Globaliser helps me to translate my entrepreneurial intuition into conscious market choices”. As a reoccurring theme in the Globaliser, finding the right balance is at the core of a sustainable international expansion.

MMOX and the rest of the participants left the session with more questions than answers. This is exactly what the Globaliser aims to achieve: re-thinking current structures and leaving the participants with ample food for thought for their journey towards internationalisation. In the upcoming session on March 24th, the participants will discuss the tools necessary to be able to answer these questions.


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The Hague Angoka Cybersecurity980

UK-based ANGOKA has decided to establish in the Netherlands and they choose the International City of Peace, Justice and Security as a place for residence. The company provides patented IoT Security solutions for managing the cybersecurity risks inherent in machine-to-machine communications, such as those used Smart Cities and Homes, Connected and Autonomous Vehicles, Industry 4.0 and National Critical Infrastructure.

The Hague Angoka Cybersecurity980

ANGOKA has always had strong ties to the Netherlands, stemming from their Non-Executive Director, Koen Gijsbers, the former General Manager of NATO’s Communications and Information Agency. With an office in The Hague, ANGOKA is eager to explore the cybersecurity opportunities in Continental Europe.

The Netherlands has also proven to be early adopters in Smart and IoT devices, with key cities considered to be Smart Cities. Steve Berry, Executive Chairman at ANGOKA Ltd. Says: ”We look forward to making connections locally, implementing our IoT security solution across emerging Mobility and metropolitan technologies.”

InnovationQuarter has been in touch with ANGOKA ever since it was established as a spin-out of Cynation. UK’s Department of International Trade was instrumental in the initial connection as they had organized several trade missions in which many UK companies in the field of cybersecurity during the Cyber Security Weeks that were organized by The Hague Security Delta, the City of The Hague and InnovationQuarter.

In the following months the Account Managers involved in the establishment of ANGOKA BV,  Philip Meijer and Martijn van Hoogenhuijze, will continue the support. The expansion marks the beginning of ANGOKA’s planned growth for 2021 and they are looking to engage with organisations in the Netherlands and throughout the world and therewith establish a presence in key markets around the world.

Martijn van Hoogenhuijze

Senior Account Manager Cybersecurity
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Mnemonic is a European cybersecurity company with security experts in all fields within IT and information security. The company is headquartered in Oslo, and after working with partners and customers in the Dutch market for several years, mnemonic is now opening its first location in the Netherlands, in The Hague.

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Combating modern cyber threats

You may have heard the name mnemonic recently, related to some high-visibility security findings, for instance; SNIcat, a tool that detected vulnerabilities in several popular security solutions, and a finding exposing covert surveillance backdoors in children’s smartwatches that received worldwide attention.

A major part of the company’s delivery is the service Managed Detection and Response (MDR). MDR is an outsourced cybersecurity service that enables organisations to combat modern cyber threats. It is widely used by organisations that for instance lack resources, be it time, manpower or know-how, to monitor their IT assets 24/7, detect threats and appropriately respond to them. The market for MDR services is fast growing. Among others, the industry analyst Gartner predicts that by 2025, 50% of all organisations globally will be using MDR services.

Providing a local alternative

To strengthen mnemonic’s already strong customer-base and presence in the Netherlands, the local team is joined by Lex Crielaars as Presales Lead. Lex will draw from his more than a decade of experience as CTO at a large consultancy in the Dutch security industry, and he’s already a familiar face for many customers after collaborating with mnemonic for years. Lex explains that the Netherlands is relatively mature when it comes to cybersecurity: “You see that both in the organisations and the companies that offer security services, as well as the research and initiatives that’s taking place here. However, the Netherlands does not quite yet have a true MDR provider at the scale of mnemonic. Hence, many organisations are looking abroad to find these services. Over the years, we’ve seen that there’s a number of organisations that could use our services here.”

Strong cyber community

mnemonic chose The Hague as the company’s first office location in the Netherlands to be “close to where it happens”. With long-standing relationships and partnership with many of the local cyber institutions in The Hague, such as Europol’s European Cyber Crime Center (EC3) and the Dutch cybersecurity provider EYE Control, mnemonic is already familiar with the city’s strong cyber community foothold.

Lex explains that the feedback from Dutch customers has been great so far:

“mnemonic has been active in the Dutch security community for years, with customers, partners, and public-private initiatives. We are here to stay, and we’re looking to continue to grow our roots here.”

“Our customers value the level of expertise and quality that our security experts provide for them. This is especially important to us, as our MDR services rely on human involvement in all phases of the service. We pride ourselves in finding the right balance between our machine-assisted MDR services and human intuition and creativity in solving problems and finding threats.”

International expansion

The opening of the Dutch office follows mnemonic’s expansion to the US last year, and its UK office the year before. Tønnes Ingebrigtsen, CEO in mnemonic, is excited about the continued international growth: “Opening the new branch office will help us serve the fast growing market for Managed Detection and Response (MDR) services in the Netherlands. It’s also a great opportunity that lets us collaborate even closer with our customers and partners in the wider Benelux region”.

Philip Meijer

Senior Account Manager Cybersecurity
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StoryPositive has opened its European Headquarters in The Hague. A great result of the company’s internationalisation strategy which was supported by the British Embassy in The Hague, The Hague International Centre and InnovationQuarter.


The company’s outlines started in 2012 and evolved in what it is today: StoryPositive. With a simple ethos: help businesses achieve positive change management outcomes. A lot of Change Management initiatives are interpreted as having failed – they overrun, the budget is blown, or the delivery has too many defects. The real reasons change doesn’t deliver what is wanted are failry simple to understand and familiar:

  • Requirements aren’t fully understood, yet often expected to be exact
  • Outside events impact requirements
  • Estimates are seen as fixed
  • People leave, new people have new ideas and/or need time to come up to speed
  • Capacity constraints aren’t understood or honoured

“But it does not have to be that way. There are ways to get continual positive outcomes but they have to be learnt. That is why StoryPositive was set up: to deliver positive outcomes.” Sarah Corballis, Operations

Toby and Sarah

Both work with leadership to implement Organisational Change using Agile techniques such as Kanban and SCRUM. Their clients include leading Investment Banks, FinTech firms, Exchanges, Insurance Brokers, Underwriters, Consultancies, and Telecoms firms. Given their business expansion plans and fields of interest, StoryPositive attended CFS2020: the Cyber & Fintech Summit which was held earlier this year in The Hague and was organized by the British Embassy in The Hague.

Assistance from the local network

At CFS2020 StoryPositive connected with InnovationQuarter: the regional economic development and promotion agency for the Greater Rotterdam – The Hague area.  Among other activities, such as investment, innovation initiatives and outbound internationalisation, InnovationQuarter facilitates the process of setting up business in The Netherlands. Finding a suitable office location, incorporating a legal entity, registering at the Chamber of Commerce and opening a bank account belong to the possibilities, as well as getting connected in the regional ecosystem.

The Hague International Centre

The Hague International Centre is the point of contact for international staff of organisations and companies in The Hague, Delft, Leidschendam-Voorburg and Rijswijk. They offer information and guidance about living and working in The Hague region. The International Centre also takes care of formalities such as municipal registration, citizen service number (BSN) and issuance of residence permits. Moreover, they organise events to settle in The Hague region. Partners of the International Centre are ACCESS and the Immigration and Naturalisation Service (IND).

“The Quality of Life is great in The Hague. It is very easy to go from The Hague to Amsterdam or Rotterdam. I love it here and I am open to have meetings with C-level management about what Agile could mean to your company.” – Toby Corballis, Founder

Philip Meijer

Senior Account Manager Cybersecurity
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The German market offers attractive growth opportunities for Dutch cybersecurity companies. However, to be able to enter the German market successfully, these companies must be well prepared. That is why InnovationQuarter, The Hague Security Delta and RVO are working with the Consulate-General in Munich to support a cluster of Dutch cybersecurity companies in their collective entry into the German market.

On Tuesday, September 22, the Consul-General Paul Ymkers of Germany was introduced to the cybersecurity community in The Hague via a virtual meeting. The online session was all about forming a cluster to collectively enter the German cybersecurity market. In addition, the multi-year program that InnovationQuarter is currently developing in collaboration with The Hague Security Delta and RVO was discussed. Initially, the intention was that the Consul would physically visit The Hague, but due to the recent measures surrounding the Corona virus, the meeting was organized online.

Trends and business opportunities in Germany

Fifteen cybersecurity companies joined this online meeting. There was also a strong representation from InnovationQuarter, The Hague Security Delta, RVO and the Consulate General in Munich.

Paul Ymkers and Marlou Peters (economic department) kicked off the meeting by discussing recent developments in cybersecurity in Southern Germany. Important themes in this were the growing interest in cybersecurity problems and the large amount of financial resources that the German government makes available to fight cybercrime. The corona crisis was also discussed – especially the German digitization battle was considered important. It is therefore expected that digitization and the associated cybersecurity risks in the post-corona era will create important opportunities for the Dutch cybersecurity business community.

The purpose of the meeting was to inform cybersecurity companies about the 3-year program to structurally target the German market in the form of a cluster. During the meeting, Marijn Leijten (InnovationQuarter) discussed the details of this program with the companies, and a discussion started about a collective versus individual approach to international growth. Bart Hofenk (RVO) further explained the Partners in International Business (PIB) program and explained the objectives of the program from a public perspective.
The process has officially started with the kick-off of the multi-year project. 5 companies have already joined the cluster – until October 1, cyber companies interested in this program can still report to Marijn or Isabel of InnovationQuarter.

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Isabel Barnhoorn

Isabel Barnhoorn

Junior Project Associate Internationalization
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Following the success of the Netherlands Pavilion at the RSA Conference earlier this year in San Francisco, InnovationQuarter in collaboration with the Netherlands Enterprise Agency (RVO), the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and HSD plan an even bigger presence for the Netherlands at next year’s RSA Conference. This is part of a multi-annual cyber security programme focused on strengthening the Dutch security sector’s position and on market opportunities for Dutch businesses that wants to transact in the United States. The program takes on trade, acquisition, knowledge and innovation.

To support this endeavour, and the long-term collaborations between Dutch and American organizations, Cisco Netherlands intends to contribute to the realization of the Netherlands pavilion at RSA Conference 2021. This investment is part of the Cisco Digital Acceleration Program in the Netherlands: Digitale Versnelling Nederland (DVN).

Hendrik Blokhuis, Director Country Digitization (DVN) Cisco: “Over the last years we’ve successfully collaborated with The Hague Security Delta (HSD) to help ensure that trust in safety and privacy remains high in the Netherlands. We’re proud to support this larger mission, the development of a multi-year cybersecurity programming focused on trade, acquisition, knowledge & innovation. Cybersecurity remains essential to ensure the safety, privacy, prosperity and wellbeing of our country, both society and economy”.

Martijn van Hoogenhuijze, Senior Account Manager Safety & Security of InnovationQuarter: “We are thrilled to have Cisco on board again for RSA2021. Cisco’s endorsement is highly valuable to the Dutch cyber community and will undoubtedly foster the already growing awareness of the Netherlands’ capabilities with regards to cybersecurity.”

Joris den Bruinen, General Director of HSD: “The commitment Cisco is showing by contributing as a sponsor to the Holland Pavilion for the RSA in 2021, extra possibilities arise for Dutch Cyber Security companies to position themselves in the USA. Also supporting the development of a multi-year cybersecurity programming towards the US focused on trade, acquisition, knowledge & innovation is of great extra value. This is on top of the continuation of the Premium Partnership from Cisco with HSD. Also, the continuation of their Digital Acceleration Program NL makes way for new Dutch diligence in the Cyber Security World.”

The Dutch presence at RSA 2020 earlier this year was the first of its kind. With a 60+ delegation of Dutch government organisations, businesses, and knowledge institutions, the Dutch were strongly represented at the RSA Conference. The first Holland IT Security House at RSA was opened on 25 February in a celebratory way, officially kicking-off the Dutch cyber mission at RSA 2020. At the pavilion, eight Dutch cybersecurity companies and organisations presented their latest innovations, showcasing how they future proof cybersecurity for the challenges ahead.

At the end of the larger mission to RSA 2020 (organised by RVO, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in close collaboration with IQ and HSD), the signing of a Letter of Intent to collaborate on a multi-annual program on the US was initiated. Cisco Netherlands is now officially part of the signees. The Cisco US headquarters is RSA Conference’s main sponsor, the contribution of Cisco Netherlands via their DVN program is of significant value in better positioning the Dutch cybersecurity sector in the United States.

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InnovationQuarter today commended Booz Allen Hamilton’s growing footprint in the Netherlands, expanding its presence in The Hague. The Netherlands is the cyber security capital of Europe and offers a conducive cybersecurity cluster, which is represented by The Hague Security Delta. Booz Allen and InnovationQuarter celebrated this expansion at the Dutch Pavilion during the RSA conference and exhibition in San Francisco.


Booz Allen Hamilton

Booz Allen is a global technology and management consulting firm, employs more than 27,000 employees globally with expertise in analytics, digital solutions, engineering and cybersecurity. Founded in 1914 and headquartered in McLean, Virginia, the firm has more than 80 offices worldwide.

Booz Allen employs continuous cyber innovation, sophisticated tradecraft, and top talent to deliver results. Booz Allen’s diverse clients span Fortune 100, Global 2000 companies, and nearly every U.S. federal and security agency. Based on a 2019 Frost & Sullivan report, Booz Allen is North America’s largest cybersecurity provider. Whether helping to understand and reduce risk posture or creating advanced algorithms to detect and stop attacks before they spread, Booz Allen supports its clients’ most critical cyber challenges.

“The cyber threats facing organizations today and the malicious actors intent on doing harm can reach beyond borders in increasingly sophisticated ways,” said Booz Allen executive vice president Bill Phelps, leader of the firm’s U.S. Commercial business. “We are proud to grow our global footprint with a talented security team in The Netherlands that will put regional expertise to work for clients, leveraging Booz Allen’s world class cyber trade-craft and building on our long tenure serving clients across Europe.”

Support from Dutch partners

When considering the Netherlands as a destination for business expansion, the Invest in Holland network is available for support. The network is a collective of Dutch agencies promoting the country, including the Netherlands Foreign Investment Agency (NFIA) with 26 offices abroad and 12 Dutch regional partners. InnovationQuarter is the regional economic development agency for the greater Rotterdam – The Hague area and got in touch with Booz Allen through NFIA’s Atlanta office. After establishing customers and bringing in key management, Booz Allen decided to find the right office location with the help of InnovationQuarter and The Hague Business Agency. The Campus of The Hague Security Delta soon proved to be the preferred office location as it serves as the physical meeting place for the cybersecurity industry. The cluster provides access to market, innovation, knowledge, capital and talent.

“We warmly welcome Booz Allen in the Netherlands and on the Hague Security Delta campus in The Hague” said Philip Meijer, Senior Account Manager Cybersecurity at InnovationQuarter. “The company is a great fit to the local cybersecurity ecosystem, where the balance between cyber security and privacy is well organized. The lessons learned are particularly well developed in the context of The Hague Security Delta.”

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The Ambassador of Canada to the Netherlands her Excellency Ms. Helfand together with Barry O’Rourke and Paul Mitten opened the office officially with a ribbon cutting.

Compusult, a world-leading Canadian geospatial software firm has opened its European Headquarters in The Hague and therewith become a registered member of the European Union. The festive opening event took place on Friday the 17th of January 2020.


Compusult was founded in 1985, and from its humble beginnings, co-founders Barry O’Rourke and Paul Mitten have grown the company to 100 employees. When they were selected to develop the Core GIS Increment 3 for the NATO Communications and Information Agency (NCI Agency), Compusult decided to open a European office, with headquarters remaining in Mount Pearl, Newfoundland and Labrador.

“For years, we have been involved in business outside of Canada and have spent much time in Europe. Opening this new office was a natural progression”, says Mr. Mitten, Compusult’s vice president.

Assistance by local network

When the Canadian Embassy in the Netherlands got involved in the expansion plans of Compusult they called in the support of their partner for market expansion services in the Netherlands, InnovationQuarter. As partners in a Softlanding Program the regional economic development agency for the greater Rotterdam – The Hague area was enthusiastic to help. InnovationQuarter, together with the Netherlands Foreign Investment Agency and Steenworp assisted with guidance on how to set up a company in the Netherlands and finding the right premises for Compusult.

NCI Agency

The main reason the company choose for the Netherlands and more precisely The Hague, is the prominent presence of the NCI Agency here. Mr. O’Rourke, Compusult’s president, is involved in project management and software design with the agency. Compusult’s permanent Europe office will allow for even more effective client support. “This strategic decision will allow us to better serve NATO, and have a base for even more business operations in Europe and around the world.”

Compusult’s flagship product is Web Enterprise Suite (WES) – a comprehensive software solution to help organizations manage, organize and access data, so they can make more well-informed decisions. WES and its companion products use industry standards to keep geospatial information safe, current, and organized. Compusult has established a strong reputation by providing products and services in the defence, aerospace and environmental sectors.

In addition to its office in The Hague, Compusult has four offices and subsidiary offices across North America, and employs 100 information technology professionals.

Martijn van Hoogenhuijze

Senior Account Manager Cybersecurity
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On Tuesday 17 September 2019 a Canadian delegation accompanied his Worship Mayor Jim Watson from Ottawa to visit The Hague Security Delta (HSD). The visit was in context of promoting and continuing the collaboration between both countries, giving businesses the facilities to participate in a Soft landing program. A continuation agreement was signed by Mayor Watson, Chris van Voorden (InnovationQuarter) and Joris den Bruinen (HSD) to strengthen this collaboration for the future. The visit was organised in close cooperation with InnovationQuarter, Invest Ottawa and the Embassy of Canada.

The Canada-Netherlands Cyber and Security Technologies Soft Landing Platform was set up in 2013 by Invest Ottawa, the Dutch Embassy in Ottawa, the Canadian Embassy to the Netherlands InnovationQuarter and HSD. This soft landing program supports businesses from Ottawa to set up office here in the Netherlands and Dutch business to set up office in Ottawa. HSD SME partners interested in exploring the North American market get a unique market introduction for a trail period in Ottawa, Canada’s national hub for the cyber, defence and security sectors with easy access to the full North American market. Canadian SMEs get the opportunity to land in the greater Rotterdam-The Hague area.

By participating in the program, each firm will be provided with access to key resources and support by Invest Ottawa and HSD to build a strong regional network in the markets and make strategic connections. Ultimately, the program is conceived to provide a low risk entry trial to Canadian and Dutch companies entering a new international market, accessing the resources they need to more readily tap into commercial opportunities by connecting with new partners, closing new deals, and possibly setting up a permanent presence in the market.

The programme, included several introductions from the organising partners, a presentation by former soft landing participant Magnet Forensics and an open discussion on further collaboration between Ottawa and the greater Rotterdam-The Hague area. Inspired by Mayor Watson’s visit, the partners are motivated to support more businesses to explore market opportunities across the ocean and participate in one of the soft landing programs.

Interested in doing business in Canada?

There are plenty of opportunities to explore the Canadian market. A soft landing programme offers a unique introduction to HSD’s partner-ecosystems for a trial period in. It provides a low risk entry to companies and entrepreneurs entering a new international market, accessing the resources they need to prepare for tapping into commercial opportunities.

In addition to this soft landing programme to Canada, the Global EPIC Soft Landing Programme provides opportunities to explore various international markets. If you are interested and want to learn more about the soft landing platform in Canada or interested in other countries like the US, Taiwan, Poland and the UK, please do not hesitate to contact us.

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In The Netherlands, October 2019 will be all about cyber security. As part of the European Cyber Security Month, many conferences, competitions and trainings will take place providing the opportunity to exchange knowledge, ideas and innovations for a more secure future.

The Cyber Security Month will be kicked off in The Hague on the first of October with the 3-day International ONE Conference. It is an international renowned conference in the field of cyber security and it is organised by the Dutch government. Amongst the other events are the Europol-INTERPOL cybercrime conference, the Unleashing Cyber Security Summit, a congress about the Future of Quantum Computing, Quantum Cryptography and Quantum Sensors and Hardwear.io Security Conference & Training as a pre-event.

Collaboration with the City of The Hague

The upcoming edition of the One Conference is extended with an extra day: Thursday 3 October, which is made possible in cooperation with the city of The Hague. In alignment with the ONE Conference, the city aims to stimulate the exchange of cyber security knowledge, ideas and innovations for a more secure future. During the three days, leading speakers from all over the world will share insights and developments in cyber security.
This year’s theme of the ONE Conference is ‘Keeping our Future Secure, Be Innovative, Stay Alert’. A novelty this year is the Innovation Floor. During three days, in close collaboration with the city of The Hague, 15 organisations will demonstrate their cyber security innovations.

Municipality of The Hague challenges Ethical Hackers

On the eve of EU Cyber Security Month, the municipality of The Hague sets the tone by testing its own digital security. In cooperation with the Dutch cyber security company Cybersprint, the city organises the hacking competition ‘Hâck The Hague’. The 2019 edition of this competition takes place in the City Hall on 30 September, when the Atrium of The Hague City Hall will be transformed into ‘The Hague Hackers Dome’. The best national and international ethical hackers – from students to professional hackers – are invited to detect digital vulnerabilities in the digital infrastructure of the municipality and its suppliers.

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CybExer, a cybersecurity company from Estonia is expanding its business to the city of peace, justice and security to join the local cybersecurity ecosystem. The Hague was a natural choice for CybExer’s first international office, considering the excellent knowledge base and availability of talent. The establishment was announced in the presence of Deputy Mayor Saskia Bruines, Chris van Voorden, Head of Foreign Investments at InnovationQuarter and Joris den Bruinen, General Director of The Hague Security Delta (HSD) in London, during a side event of the Infosecurity2019 conference and exhibition  which was organized by the UK’s Department of International Trade and InnovationQuarter.

Human factors of cybersecurity

CybExer strongly believes that cybersecurity is not merely a technology issue, related to servers, routers and software. Humans at every level, starting from strategic decision makers, to technical response teams and finally the users all play a critical role in keeping the cyber environment secure. CybExer has an impressive track-record supporting organizations in generating awareness about the potential consequences of cyberattacks and the importance of proper secure IT systems, as well as day-to-day cyber hygiene at all levels in the organization. CybExer recently provided cybersecurity training to the Ministers of the Defence of all EU countries.

Continuous, on-premises cyber simulations

In response to the need of both commercial and government organizations for thorough and effective cyber resilience training, CybExer has developed a cyber battlefield simulation platform. This ‘CybExer Range Platform’ (CRP) delivers simplified, plug and play capabilities for cyber exercises and simulations in a customized, realistic environment on the clients’ premises. It allows employees to not only learn, but also simulate and challenge their cyber environment as well as develop and test improvements.

Merle Maigre, Executive Vice President for Government Relations at CybExer: ‘The Hague presents several benefits as a new location for our business, such as the vicinity to the major European economies in the Netherlands, Belgium, UK, Germany and France. The excellent reputation of The Hague Security Delta cluster and the high state of knowledge and experience of the Dutch government, the good cultural fit between Estonia and the Netherlands and the availability of talent makes us confident that this is the best location to grow our business.’

Chris van Voorden: ‘We are very happy to see that yet another cybersecurity company chooses The Hague as their place of business and it is fantastic to announce this during the Infosec 2019, where in three days the information security industry comes together with more than 400+ international exhibitors of security solutions and 19,500+ industry professionals visiting. Especially since for the first time The Netherlands has a Holland Pavilion with seven Dutch companies exhibiting.’

Are you interested in investment opportunities in the greater Rotterdam – The Hague area?

Don’t hesitate to get in touch!

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On the 18th of April, the Invest in Holland IT Seminar took place at the Consulate General of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Istanbul. Turkish, Dutch and International guests were welcomed by the Consul General, the Invest in Holland Network and the Holland Innovation Network. Consul General Mr. Bart van Bolhuis kicked-off by emphasizing the strong economic ties between Turkey and the Netherlands, but also the importance of IT in both countries. Seven interesting speakers followed and enlightened the audience with insights, developments and opportunities in the Dutch field of cyber security and artificial intelligence.

Why The Netherlands

Eric van Pelt, IT Sector Specialist at the Netherlands Foreign Investment Agency, shared his knowledge on the key advantages of the Netherlands and its IT sector. The Netherlands is one of the most connected countries in the world and is renowned as Europe’s Digital Mainport and Gateway. For example, the country is home to the world’s largest Internet Exchange, houses more than 200 large data centers and 96% of Dutch households have broadband connections. The Netherlands has a great track record of IT innovation which is taking place in the many IT ecosystems the country provides. Focal IT areas in The Netherlands are: artificial intelligence, big data, cyber security, data centers and gaming. At the same time Turkey has a fast-growing IT sector which is among the leading sectors of the country and more than 60% of IT export goes to the EU. In other words, IT is of great economic value and fuels business both in Turkey and The Netherlands.

“We cannot imagine life without IT as we have become very dependent on technology. Cyber security is very important to ensure society’s digital transition and to protect the enabling properties of IT. Artificial Intelligence (AI) will help us to improve the use of IT and the output we desire.” – Eric van Pelt, IT Sector Specialist at NFIA

IT and Cybersecurity landscape of the Netherlands

André Hendriks, Partner at Verdonck, Klooster & Associates gave the audience a better understanding of the IT industry in the Netherlands and more specifically a breakdown of the Dutch cyber security market. According to VKA’s research the importance of cyber security has increased due to the increasing digitalization in society. To support that statement Mr. Hendriks shared an overview of the number of IT companies, the amount of cyber security companies and their economic added value. In conclusion, cyber security is a sub-sector of IT and grows twice as fast compared to the IT sector as a whole. Cyber attacks are a major cause of damage and trigger serious financial losses to the Dutch nation. Compared to other countries in the EU, but also worldwide, the Netherlands ranks relatively ‘high’ on annual loss due to cybercrime incidents, most likely due to its vast IT infrastructure and central position. Cyber crime will remain a serious challenge for the coming years.

Turkish experience in the Netherlands

Gönenç Seçil Tarakcıoğlu, R&D Manager at Triodor. Triodor Software is an international technology company with a versatile expertise in ICT and robotics. The company introduces unique innovation-driven business models and develops high-technology solutions for different sectors worldwide. Major projects are operating in domains of farming, food, logistics, smart living, call center and gaming. The Triodor story began in 2003, when entrepreneurs of Turkish origin living in the Netherlands realised their dream of establishing a software sourcing company. Nowadays, after a rapid growth, it counts more than 100 employees covering diverse fields and specialisations and has set up partnerships with many companies worldwide. The sales, business consultancy and board-level management are handled at the Headquarters in Amsterdam, whereas research and development operations are conducted in Istanbul. Among various other awards, the Development Center in Istanbul has been awarded to be Turkey’s Best Software R&D Center many years in a row.

Access to Communities & Ecosystems

Brian Gharibaan, Founder of The Hague Tech explained that the Netherlands has a long history of innovation and is home to a multitude of tech clusters. The Hague Tech is one of the prominent IT-Tech communities in The Netherlands providing an environment where entrepreneurs and innovators come together and share ideas openly. The community has grown to 300 members where The Hague Tech facilitates and organizes events on a daily basis. Members come together to solve challenges that large organizations – such as Samsung – are facing. THT’ers also join forces to accelerate technology adoption in society. The team of The Hague Tech is there to support the member’s mission and to build the environment where they thrive with networks, knowledge and inspiration. For newcomers and interested companies there is a dedicated ‘soft landing program’. It is a full-service program offering entrepreneurs a one-stop-shop for business expansion and soft landing related services. It is created for international Tech startups and scale-ups who are interested to get a taste of the Dutch market, who want to validate their product-market fit, have interest in meeting potential customers and partners and want to join an active Tech community in The Hague. The program is free of charge, tailor-made and open for startups and scale-ups in all phases. The Hague Tech has also established great relationships with other tech hubs worldwide, such as in San Francisco and South Africa.

Public Private collaboration

Eveline Vreede works at Delft University of Technology in the capacity of Managing Director Cyber Security Academy and Manager TU Delft Safety & Security Institute. The Netherlands is known for public-private partnerships and Ms. Vreede is a strong advocate of innovation collaboration as well. The Cyber Security Academy (CSA) is a collaboration between Leiden University, Delft University of Technology and The Hague University of Applied Sciences. At CSA scholars, lecturers and experts from private and public sectors translate cyber issues into a varied range of multidisciplinary learning tracks for highly educated professionals. The TU Delft Safety & Security Institute brings together a diversity of research on fundamental technologies, socio-technical complexity, methodology and models for Safety & Security in the public sphere, private sphere, and the movement between those spheres. DSyS functions as a window for Public Private Innovation on the topic of S&S. It creates a platform for cooperation with industry and government and encourages multidisciplinary cooperation. Delft University of Technology also known as TU Delft, is the largest and oldest Dutch public technological university, located in Delft, the Netherlands. It counts as one of the best universities for engineering and technology worldwide, typically seen within the top 20. It is repeatedly considered the best university of technology in the Netherlands

A Turkish customer journey to the Netherlands

Hakan Terzioğlu, VP of Sales & Marketing at Biznet Bilişim was able to share from experience what it took to expand business to the Netherlands. Biznet Bilisim is a leading cyber security services company with a holistic approach to IT, OT and IoT Security. The company offers best of breed products from leading global technology vendors as well as project delivery, technical support, consulting and auditing (incl. PCI-DSS and penetration testing) services to more than its 250 enterprise segment customers including Energy, Finance, and Telco. Biznet Bilisim, a Gartner recognized cyber services company and listed in Deloitte Technology Fast50 Turkey multiple times, has over 90 employees based in Turkey and now also the Netherlands. Biznet decided to open its doors at The Hague Security Delta (HSD). HSD is a well organized Security cluster in The Netherlands and is home to a community of companies, governments and knowledge institutes. Together the cluster works on knowledge development and innovation in security. It has a common goal: a more secure world, more business activity and more jobs. HSD’s primary focus areas are cyber security, forensics, national security, and critical infrastructure. HSD offers access to Talent, knowledge, innovation, capital, contacts and events.

Regional representation from the Netherlands

Chris van Voorden, Director Foreign Investments & Internationalization at InnovationQuarter represented the Dutch partners in economic promotion of the Netherlands. Several regions from the Netherlands were attending: the greater Rotterdam-The Hague area (InnovationQuarter), The Hague (The Hague Business Agency), Rotterdam (Rotterdam Partners) and last but not least Amsterdam (Amsterdam in Business). The regional partners cooperate with the Netherlands Foreign Investment agency under the flag of ‘Invest in Holland’ to promote the Netherlands internationally and attract foreign companies to the regions. As the first port of call, Invest in Holland can offer free and confidential services such as providing up-to-date information; introducing relevant business contacts, government authorities, ecosystems and service suppliers; organizing fact-finding trips and site selection missions; providing personalized guidance and counsel on tax, government and permit procedures, location options and business solutions.

“The Invest in Holland network welcomes Turkish business and innovation to the Netherlands. We are here to guide you” – Chris van Voorden, Director Foreign Investments & Internationalization at InnovationQuarter

Meet InnovationQuarter

InnovationQuarter is the economic development agency for West Holland. InnovationQuarter finances innovative and fast-growing companies, assists international companies in establishing their businesses in West Holland, and facilitates (international) collaboration between innovative entrepreneurs, knowledge institutes and government.

Wat kunnen wij voor u betekenen?

Neem gerust contact met ons op!

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It was the pedometer that gave him away. Tennis coach Mark de J. was suspected of killing entrepreneur Koen Everink. De J. claimed that at the time of the murder he was being held in a back seat, but his pedometer told a different story. Just one example of digital evidence helping to solve a case. Hans Henseler and Carl Tinker of Magnet Forensics expect this type of information will in future be part of all police investigations. It is therefore high time that not only digital forensics specialists but also regular investigators had the opportunity to review digital evidence. Magnet’s intuitive assessment tool – Magnet REVIEW – makes this possible.

What makes Magnet Forensics so innovative?

“What makes Magnet REVIEW so good is that the tool works intuitively,” says Carl Tinker, sales director at Magnet Forensics. “For instance, anyone can order a football shirt on Amazon. You select the correct size and the right colour, team and fabric. Magnet REVIEW is equally user-friendly. In the left column, investigators can click on e-mail, chat, photos and documents. It lets them easily examine the digital evidence and assess its relevance to the case.”

Tinker adds, “When digital forensics first emerged, a group of experts sat in a corner and that’s where you would send the digital evidence. Nowadays, these experts still unlock the raw data, but the detectives are the ones that assess the evidence because they have knowledge of the suspects and the timeline of events.”

In 2018, the Canadian company Magnet Forensics acquired the product Tracks Inspector as well as the team of the Dutch firm that went by the same name. Tracks Inspector had, among other things, developed the well-known chatbot Sweetie for researchers at Terre des Hommes. With Magnet Forensics, Tracks Inspector has now become Magnet REVIEW.

How has InnovationQuarter contributed to the establishment of Magnet Forensics in The Hague?

“About 20 months ago when in Canada, we met Chris van Voorden, head of Foreign Investments at InnovationQuarter,” says Carl Tinker. “Chris told us about the soft landing programme that InnovationQuarter organises in conjunction with the Canadian embassy. This initiative is for Canadian companies that want to become acquainted with the West Holland ecosystem.”

Tinker explains that Magnetic Forensics was at the time still thinking of the United Kingdom as the location for its EMEA headquarters: “Although we had clients in the Netherlands, we did not have any strategic contact until Chris and account manager Philip introduced us to the Ministry of Justice, potential partners and The Hague Security Delta. We then started scratching our heads because access to the European market is much better from the Netherlands than from the UK. And Brexit was coming too.”

So, the company decided to settle in The Hague.

“InnovationQuarter made us feel that there really was a support structure for us here,” says Tinker. “We were introduced not only to strategic partners and government bodies but to various commercial leads as well. For example, it was at an event recommended to us by InnovationQuarter that we met our Romanian partner. We are now doing substantial business with them.”

What is the social impact of Magnet Forensics?

Magnet Forensics began life on the work floor. The Canadian police officer Jad Saliba, who himself has a background in IT, was disturbed by the fact that his colleagues worked so little with digital evidence. Digital specialists were overloaded and investigators had not mastered the complex digital forensics tools that were available.

Saliba therefore built a tool that allowed non-technical colleagues to analyse digital evidence. His company, Magnet Forensics, now employs 220 people. But in his heart, Saliba is still a law enforcement officer with a strong social mission: seeking justice and protecting the innocent.

What does the future look like?

“We want to grow,” replies Hans Henseler, co-founder of Tracks Inspector and now director of Magnet REVIEW at Magnet Forensics. “We hope to increase our turnover fivefold, but we are also growing in terms of staff: this year, we will go from five to nine FTEs. And if we add staff for support and training, we need to think along the lines of 12 employees in total.”

Henseler lectures on digital forensics at Leiden University of Applied Sciences one day a week. He says, “What Magnet does will only become more relevant over time as there are many things that people are quite poor at but which machines excel at. You cannot stop the current trend.”

Wat kunnen wij voor u betekenen?

Neem gerust contact met ons op.

Martijn van Hoogenhuijze

Senior Account Manager Cybersecurity
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Carles Gómara Director of Innovation at the Catalan Agency for Business Competitiveness ACCIO, gave his perspective on ongoing digitalization, which is changing our society rapidly. He used the analogy of the rabbit and the turtoise, to emphasize that however fast technology is evolving, adaptation is always lagging behind. This is true for many technology trends, which we now call big data, artificial intelligence and internet of things, but have in fact been around for a very long time.


Using the examples of several “smart home” applications, such as a smart washing machine, Carles questioned the necessity of all this technology in our daily lives. A question that is not always asked at a side-event of a technology conference such as MWC. Without drawing conclusions Carles shared many real-life examples for the audience to consider, adding that like with many things in life “we need time”.

Security issues of IoT

Ernst Bovelander, CEO of Delft-based Brightsight discussed high assurance security evaluations, which is Brightsight’s core business. Many chips, which are used in for instance creditcards, cellphones and passports, have to comply with the highest security regulations, which Brighsight validates. Ernst stressed the importance of securing all household internet of things solutions. Even in the most basic examples such as connected doorbells, a lot of easily hackable technology is involved. Ernst gave a couple of additional examples, and the implications for the 50 billion connected devides that are expected to be operational around 2030. In general Ernst stressed that the security aspect of IoT should not be underestimated. Even as consumers, we should be aware of the risks of poorly secured devices that will be around us more and more.

Dialogue with consumers will be the user interface of the future – Jorge Marquez Moreno, Head of user experience design at Everis

Brightsight is the number one security evaluation lab in the world. It is fair to call Brightsight a global company, as 99% of their customers are based outside the Netherlands and their 170 employees come from 30 different countries. In addition to their head office in Delft, they recently set up an R&D office in Barcelona, where they are quickly expanding.

Jorge Marquez Moreno, Head of user experience design at Everis shared his “AI fears & cheers research” – which was conducted at Everis’ R&D lab in Barcelona. Jorge and his team interviewed end-users about how they experience technology. “We can learn best how to optimize AI-based consumer products by interviewing actual people. Dialogue with consumers will be the user interface of the future”, Jorge argued.

Everis found that consumers’ opinions on AI are heavily influenced by the media. Negative examples such as those of self-driving cars being involved in fatal accidents, or Cambridge Analytica abusing Facebook data to manipulate the democratic process, will stick more than the great services that e.g. Netflix and Spotify provides using AI. On the other hand, Everis found that consumers will cheer for AI when it makes life easier, and even more when it really improves the quality of, or even saves their life, but that the attitude changes when people fear that AI/machines will take over. This fear is especially emerging when AI is perceived to replace human interaction, emotional intelligence and judgement. For example, many people feel ‘tricked’ when they find out they have been talking to an AI- based chatbot in stead of a human. This demonstrates the importance of creating awareness about AI and making consumers understand how they can benefit from this technology.

On behalf of ACCIO and InnovationQuarter, we would like to thank all the amazing speakers and all our Dutch, Catalan and international visitors and partners. It was geat to see the networking taking place, further strengthening the ties between Catalunya and the Netherlands.

MWC Barcelona

At MWC, InnovationQuarter was part of the Holland Pavillion, which was hosted by Enterprise Summit. The Dutch have a great presence at MWC, which made this a great timing for the Dutch-Catalan meetup. We will be at MWC untill Thursday, so if you are looking for opportunities in (West) Holland, find us in in Hall 7.


Brightsight is a Delft- and Barcelona- based company, that offers security evaluations and certificates on behalf of major payment schemes and industry organisations worldwide to ensure the right level of security. These services are provided to IC manufacturers, (embedded) secure device manufacturers, card suppliers and service providers.

Brightsight is a knowledge-based company. Our international team of experts stay up to date with the latest technologies and requirements to ensure the most reliable and efficient evaluation process possible for our customers.


Everis is a large family with 21,000 professionals across Europe, USA and Latin America. The company has recently set up a Dutch office.

In 2014 everis joined NTT DATA Group, the sixth-largest IT services company in the world with 100,000 professionals and with offices in Asia-Pacific, the Middle East, Europe, Latin America and North America.

Above all, everis believes in its people, their ongoing development and their talent. We are firmly committed to talent and our main goal is to nurture high performing professionals by creating an environment of responsible freedom.

Meet Catalonia Trade & Investment

Catalonia Trade & Investment is the Catalan Government agency for foreign investment and business competitiveness. It promotes innovation, internationalisation, trade and funding of Catalan companies and startups. It also organizes trade missions in countries chosen strategically for their business and technology cooperation opportunities.

In addition, it offers specialised one-stop-shop services to international investors and corporations, attracting foreign direct investment to Barcelona and Catalonia. Headquartered in Barcelona, Catalonia Trade & Investment operates from 40 offices around the world, covering over 100 markets.

Meet InnovationQuarter

InnovationQuarter is the economic development agency for West Holland.

InnovationQuarter finances innovative and fast-growing companies, assists international companies in establishing their businesses in West Holland, and facilitates (international) collaboration between innovative entrepreneurs, knowledge institutes and government.

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X-systems opens office at The Hague Security Delta Campus

Many companies are unaware of existing vulnerabilities and cyberthreats in their ICT infrastructure. X-Systems offers companies tools and methods to improve their cybersecurity, ranging from highly customized applications to simple measures that increase resilience. Maximum performance at minimum risks in accordance with the wishes.

Devices are being connected to ICT-networks in growing numbers. Because many of these devices are insufficiently secured at their core, they cause vulnerabilities to cyber attacks, criminals and spies in entire ICT networks. Cyber criminals can enter most organizations within a few days, by simply spoofing (duplicating) the WIFI network and gain access to all company and personal data without the company noticing the attack.

Launch of XECURE.ME platform

At the Mobile World Congress, X-Systems celebrated the launch of its platform XECURE.ME, where organizations are introduced to IoT security architects. John Meyers, CTO at X-SYSTEMS: “XECURE.ME users have a secure ICT architecture, preventing cyberattacks. This is essential, since the cost of undoing a cyber attack ranges from several hundred thousands to millions of euro’s, not to mention system failures, fines and reputation damage”.

Chris van Voorden, head of Foreign Investments at InnovationQuarter:

”We are very pleased to welcome X-Systems at The Hague Security Delta. With ongoing digitalization, and everything becoming mobile and interconnected, infrastructures are becoming more and more dependent on Internet of Things. Security is a very important aspect, which X-Systems helps companies to tackle. Because of this, we believe X-Systems will contribute to our ecosystem and a safer future.”

The Hague is renowned for its international position as the City of Peace, Justice & Security. It provides X-Systems with a prosperous business environment near its main customers. Furthermore, X-Systems’ membership with The Hague Security Delta (HSD) positions it at the centre of Europe’s leading security cluster. HSD is a community of companies, government organisations and knowledge institutes, who serve as a new market for foreign companies and as a platform to create new (innovative) initiatives. Home to this cluster is the HSD Campus: the innovation centre for the security industry, with living labs, training facilities, flexible office space and meeting rooms.