Written on November 12. 2021

15 years Havecon, an interview with Henk Verbakel

For our 15-year anniversary we asked Henk Verbakel, Havecon founder and CEO, to comment on this milestone. In this interview, Henk reflects on the past, but also looks ahead towards the future and the latest overseas developments.

-15 years ago you started, did you ever think when you founded Havecon that it would grow into such an international organization?

No, definitely not. In fact, I had ruled it out with the knowledge and urge at the time to focus more on a regional level and somewhat smaller projects; in essence, to start without a focus on the large-scale projects... so it has turned out somewhat different indeed....

-What is the success formula behind the company?

It's really the people! We have the most loyal team you could wish for and everyone is always working hard for the company. In second place are the loyal suppliers with whom on average, we have a very warm relationship with. This is from day one and trust and the award is, and remains, an important motive...

-What exemplifies a Havecon project?

In the first place, it is the speed with which projects are started up and the responsibility that is taken on by the team. As soon as the materials are in place and the men from Voorwinden or their contractors are back on the gas, those are the moments we as a team are good at.

-What successes are you most proud of in the past 15 years?

There are quite a few, actually... in terms of colleagues, it is the warehouse and the office which we designed and built together. These were realized between 2017 and 2019 and everyone has contributed in his or her own way in terms of designs and wishes. We enjoy this every day and it certainly helps to create a good atmosphere.

Furthermore, I think we can be very proud of the beautiful customer base we have. The questions and requirements are becoming more complex internationally and we can meet them quite well together. Our customers are becoming bigger and more professional, but we are pulling ourselves up just as hard.

-Over the past few years offices have been added in Bosnia and Canada, is there a limit to the expansion?

No, not at all. We already have an office ready and waiting in the US and we will move certain activities there at the beginning of next year and manage certain matters more locally from there. However, fully under the responsibility of the head office because that works also fine with the other locations now and so we can steer our second home market from the surroundings.

-Which role plays Atrium Agri in the future of the Dutch horticulture sector and which developments do you expect from this collective in the future?

Atrium has arisen in the core by cooperation and we will certainly continue to develop ourselves. Not entirely without obligation but by growth of the partners and also by the connection of other parties. The strength of Atrium is that all disciplines and responsibilities are more equal and so we can serve our customers well. Not only by Havecon as a reliable building partner but also by all partner companies to let all plans succeed... this way we make the next steps in the coming years to be the best building partner for our customers as a group!

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