Creative, human-focused design

Huddle is an Australian strategic-design company with a focus on human insight, minsdets, sustainability and value ecosystems – design factors that are appealing to business’ managers, teams and – of course – customers. The company was founded with 15 staff members back in 2009.

Since then, Huddle's capacity has grown by more than triple, and – in recent years – they've been getting more and more European clients, which is why they decided to open their global headquarters in Amsterdam back in 2015.

“Amsterdam was the city that stood out, being more bilingual than your usual sense, and with a great awareness of Australia, coupled with the great relationship between our countries,” said Paul Fairhead, Huddle's managing director, in an interview with the Netherlands Foreign Investment Agency (NFIA).

Amsterdam: a well-located cultural match 

Amsterdam's innovation, talent, liberality and proactive nature were all big draws for Huddle. “Working in Amsterdam, we like being here; it’s a cultural fit, and we have been able to attract a lot of really good talent because of the people who gravitate here,” Fairhead said. “It’s also a very developed country in terms of thinking about the future – just look at Dutch policies around energy or their approach to rehabilitation over incarceration.”

Another major reason the company chose the Dutch capital was its high English proficiency and its relationship with Australia. “We wanted to be on the European continent – rather than base ourselves in London like most Australian companies,” said Fairhead. “Amsterdam was the city that stood out, being more bilingual than your usual sense and with a great awareness of Australia, coupled with the great relationship between our countries.”

Naturally, expanding into a city that's 1,747 kilometres (1,085 miles) away from home had some logistical hurdles. Luckily, organisations such as the NFIA were at hand to make Huddle's move as smooth as possible: “The help they gave us has been phenomenal in terms of guiding us through the legal and corporate system in the Netherlands and introducing us to great contacts.”