Why Amsterdam was the perfect place for the next step

The new office, located on Amsterdam’s famous Keizersgracht canal, merges the company's previous European offices in Hamburg and London. The opening was celebrated with business partners, clients and selected stakeholders. In a short speech, Thomas Hinrichs, senior vice president and managing director of Brown-Forman’s Europe operations, elaborated on why the company has decided to set up in Amsterdam: “Over the past five years, our European business has grown substantially, so we decided to consolidate the company’s Western Europe and Greater Europe organisations into a single pan-European operation. We chose Amsterdam as the place for this next step for several reasons. Firstly, it is easy to come here. Amsterdam Schiphol Airport connects us to all relevant places in the world. Travelling back and forth from the city to the airport is fast and saves us a lot of time compared to our previous offices.”

Talent

Hinrichs and two other key members of the company’s European leadership team moved to Amsterdam in January 2014. The brand-new office is currently staffed with about 20 people. Finding employees was no problem for Brown-Forman, says Hinrichs. “Composing an excellent team of people was no problem here. There are a lot of internationally-oriented and talented potential employees to select from here. We even get requests from colleagues stationed at other offices to work here from Amsterdam.”

Welcoming to expats

According to Hinrichs, something that he and his colleagues were also very pleased with is the fact that they felt welcome in the Amsterdam Metropolitan Area right from the start. “Organisations such as amsterdam inbusiness and the Netherlands Foreign Investment Agency helped us getting settled here right away. The immediate assistance we received helped us getting everything up and running in a timely manner.”

Quality of life

The foreign employees that have recently moved to Amsterdam are delighted with their new home. As one employee proudly mentioned: “Before I moved to Amsterdam, I lived in London where travelling to work with the underground took me much longer and was a lot less fun. When I moved here, I got a bike so I can cycle to work every day. This makes the commute to work much more pleasant and healthy.”