On Tuesday (July 20), some 60 members from the Taiwanese startup community learned about the “Orange Carpet” that the Netherlands government has prepared for global startups at an online seminar organized by the Netherlands Office Taipei and the Netherlands Enterprise Agency.
Martin van ‘t Veld, advisor of the Netherlands Point of Entry of the Netherlands Enterprise Agency under the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Policy, and Robin van Scheijndel, program director of Dutch incubator HighTechXL, based in Eindhoven, dubbed the Dutch silicon valley, shared business opportunities for Taiwanese startups in the Netherlands.
They both mentioned more than a dozen of sector-specific facilitators in the Netherlands that could help startups in different stages, such as the Brainport Eindhoven for technology companies, Dutch Game Garden for the gaming industry, the Health Valley for medical sciences, and Port XL for maritime innovation.
When asked about how much it would take to set up a company in the Netherlands, van ‘t Veld gave the number of a mere €1,200 (approx. $1,410), promising that they would “cut the red tape” for all startups.
The Representative of the Netherlands Office Taipei, Guido Tielman, mentioned that the Netherlands and Taiwan enjoy over 12 billion Euro in annual trade, and that Taiwan is Netherlands’ “2nd largest export destination in Asia,” even larger than Korea and Japan.
Tielman welcomes start-ups to join the existing 200 Taiwanese companies that have landed in the Netherlands.
Mayor John Jorritsma of the City of Eindhoven, where some 60 of these 200 Taiwanese companies are based, also welcomed Taiwanese innovative businesses to join their Dutch counterparts for a more prosperous, safer, healthier, and more sustainable future.
The President of Garage+, the incubation project of the Epoch Foundation, Josephine Chao, also shared her experience of starting her business in the Netherlands as a gateway to Europe.
Chao mentioned that the mature legal framework, the high proficiency of English, the location and transportation, and the similarity between the Dutch and Taiwanese in being happy, friendly, down-to-earth, and transparent.
Clement Lee, the CEO of Taiwan-based startup Hugreen that has landed in the Netherlands with the help of Garage+ to provide smart solutions for greenhouses with sensing networks and monitoring systems, also encouraged Taiwanese startups to expand their international horizon by trying out their opportunities in the Netherlands.
Despite the pandemic, the number of startups in the Netherlands increased 6% to almost 10,000 ventures in 2020, ranking the second only after Denmark in terms of startups per capita. In 2020, Dutch startups also broke the record to have raised more than 1.8 billion euro.
According to American research institute Startup Genome, the startup ecosystem in the Netherlands was ranked the third in Europe and the twelfth in the world in 2020.
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Senior Press and Cultural Affairs Office
Netherlands Office Taipei