Since WWII, Canada and the Netherlands have had a special relationship after Canadian forces hosted the Dutch Royal Family during their exile and helped liberate the Netherlands in 1945.
Amsterdam is a strategic business location
Boasting one of the world's highest concentrations of international companies, the Amsterdam Area acts as an attractive test market and gateway to the greater European market, with a population of almost 500 million people. Amsterdam Airport Schiphol is centrally located, with all critical European business destinations just a short 2 hour flight away. Connections to several large Canadian cities are excellent, with several direct flights to Vancouver, Toronto and Montreal (among others) on a weekly basis.
The Canadian community in Amsterdam
More and more talented Canadians are finding their way to the Amsterdam Area. There is a large community of Canadians here, which speaks to the appeal the Amsterdam Area holds for international talent. People from almost 180 different nationalities call this city home. As a result, it's easy to find excellent employees to ensure your business is optimally staffed.
Investments between Canada and the Netherlands
The Netherlands is one of the biggest contributors of foreign direct investment in Canada, with investments in industries such as tech, agri-food, maritime industry and financial services. The Canadian company Northland Power is the prime investor of the $4 billion Gemini Offshore Wind Park in the North Sea, 80 kilometres from the Dutch coast. This is the largest project currently taking place in the Netherlands, and will provide millions of Dutch households with clean energy.
Canadian companies in the Netherlands
There are dozens of Canadian companies currently operating in the Amsterdam region, including DART Aerospace, Assent Compliance, McCain Foods Holland, OpenText, CAE Aviation Training, Mood Media Netherlands, Bombardier Aerospace Netherlands, MCO Health, Enerflex European Holdings and Landre Ruhaak. The fast-growing IT business Martello, headquartered in Ottawa, has an Amsterdam office and a Dutch CRO. Lightspeed, which offers software for SMEs, has set up shop in Amsterdam as well.
Elsewhere in the Netherlands there is CGI (formerly Logic) – the biggest Canadian company in the country –, Ad van Geloven, Cêlavita, Aluminum & Chemistry Rotterdam, Dorel Juvenile Netherlands, Nova Innovene Netherlands, Vermilion Oil & Gas and Teledyne DALSA. One of the most important sectors represented is IT and tech, but agri-food, the chemical sector, consumer goods, financial services, creative industries, electronics, oil and gas and the transport sector are also thriving.
Many Dutch companies also operate in Canada, including AEGON, ING, ABN AMRO, Heineken, Grolsch, Unilever, AkzoNobel and Rabobank.
A world-leading digital hub
The Amsterdam Area is a thriving tech hub and the most digitally connected economyin the world, with a global mindset when it comes to developing innovative tech businesses. 70% of innovation in the Netherlands is tech-related and this sector accounts for more than 30% of R&D spending among other Dutch businesses. This places the tech industry among the key innovative sectors in the Netherlands. Some famous technological innovations are of Dutch origin, for instance Wi-Fi, Phyton, the route navigation system and Bluetooth.