In 2018, 115 foreign companies opened an office or expanded their business in West Holland with the assistance of regional acquisition partners. These firms are expected to provide in excess of 2,600 jobs and to invest a total of 278 million euros in the region. Since 2014, The Hague Business Agency, Rotterdam Partners and InnovationQuarter have been actively collaborating to place the region in the global spotlight and to attract and support foreign companies. This has paid off: 26% of international companies that set up business in the Netherlands last year chose West Holland.
United States and China strongly represented
Most of the foreign companies that made a new or an expansion investment in West Holland in 2018 came from China (23) and the USA (22). This is in line with the trend of recent years with the majority of firms hailing from these two countries.
Chinese companies that established themselves in West Holland during 2018 include Genscript (biomedical firm with European branch in Leiden), Oppo (smartphones in Rotterdam) and Newtrend Group (biochemicals in The Hague).
Major names from the US that set up in or expanded into West Holland include GE Healthcare (new office in Rotterdam), Microsoft (Quantum Lab in Delft) and Synergy International Systems (Tech for Good in The Hague).
The figures for 2018 also reveal that companies from ‘new’ countries are coming to the region. For example, the strong growth in the number of firms from India and Turkey is striking. Eight companies from each country chose West Holland as their base in the Netherlands.
New sectors: ‘Next’ and ‘Impact’ Economy
Also noteworthy is the growing presence of firms active in the Next Economy. This includes a significant number of young tech companies that have made West Holland their home due to the region’s strong innovation ecosystem.
No fewer than 34 of the 115 newly established foreign firms in 2018 operate in the high-tech and IT sectors, followed by 14 in life sciences and health, 13 in the energy sector and 11 in agro and food.
We also see many new businesses (12) active in the so-called ‘Impact Economy’; companies that are working on making the world a better, safer and fairer place.
Investor Relations Programme: 298 companies visited
In addition to attracting new companies, The Hague Business Agency, Rotterdam Partners and InnovationQuarter also actively support foreign firms already established in the region.
This is part of the national Investor Relations Programme, which is co-funded by the Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Policy, the Rotterdam-The Hague Metropolitan Region and the Province of South Holland. In 2018, the three acquisition partners visited a total of 298 companies through the programme.
Successful collaboration on acquisition in West Holland
Attracting and retaining foreign investment is of great importance to the Netherlands and the West Holland region, not least in terms of economic growth and job creation. The 115 international companies succesfully assisted in 2018, for example, will by their own estimate create 2,108 new jobs within three years and secure 535 existing jobs. In addition, these firms are jointly investing 278 million euros in the region.
The 115 investment projects are the result of a joint effort by the regional agencies Rotterdam Partners, The Hague Business Agency and InnovationQuarter in association with the Netherlands Foreign Investment Agency (NFIA), an operational unit of the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Policy. The acquisition partners have been collaborating closely since 2014, both strategically and operationally, and have achieved great success. In 2018, 26% of all foreign companies* that established themselves in the Netherlands opted for West Holland, well above the region’s share in the national economy. In 2014, it was 20%.
* This concerns the projects completed by Rotterdam Partners, The Hague Business Agency and InnovationQuarter in collaboration with the NFIA (Netherlands Foreign Investment Agency).