Company Visit to Van Oord, March 23 2018 - Report by Catherina Bareman

My name is Paul Verheul and I am working for Tina

Van Oord Dredging and Marine Contractors cordially invited IMA (International Management Assistants) Netherlands to visit the head office in Rotterdam, an impressive open and spacious office building with a view on the Maas river. Ships passing by while engineers are fully dedicated to their jobs, amongst other things, calculating how much power and how much time is needed to install a wind turbine in the ocean. Van Oord is a family company, founded in 1868, nowadays people from all over the world (68 countries) are working within Van Oord.

This company predominantly composed of a male workforce for once in a lifetime could experience a 98% female attendance of a business presentation. On Friday 23rd of March 45 IMA members were welcomed by an enthusiastic male (!) Van Oord team. With lots of humour COO Paul Verheul and ‘The People Who Make Van Oord’ Martin Kershaw shed a light from their professional point of view on how this leading international contractor specialized in dredging, marine engineering and offshore projects is working on the ‘refurbishment’ of our globe.

We Create - We Care - We Work Together - We Succeed

Paul Verheul emphasized why Van Oord is successful and that “Our people make the difference!” is not just a slogan. At Van Oord people work together to create a sustainable world for future generations. Many of them can actually point out places in the world like the Palm Islands in Dubai and windmills of the Gemini wind farm and say “I helped built that”. Dikes are built to make sure the cities behind them stay dry. Large vessels bring sand from the bottom of the sea to replenish beaches and in so doing strengthen the coastlines. Paul Verheul highlighted one project: Reefguard. This is a project by sea biologists who developed a way to grow coral in a mobile laboratory. In a very colourful way he explained this process. It is a way to make sure that coral which would be damaged and lost forever when building for example a harbour the traditional way, can be saved and grown in a new location.

With 150 years of entrepreneurship Van Oord has its focus on the future

They both led us through the world of creating land, wind parks and other offshore projects. In a passionate way both gentlemen shared their experience working within Van Oord; the IMA members were all ears and could even imagine playing in the sand and sailing those magnificent ships themselves! Furthermore Martin showed photos and videos on projects such as the tow and installation of a huge offshore platform, the expansion of the Suez canal and the installation of wind mills on the Walney offshore wind farm. Before the Friday afternoon drinks started in the restaurant of the Van Oord offices, the IMA delegation was taken into the training room where the opportunity was offered to try dig sand from the ocean and load in the cargo hold or otherwise steer a ship and use the machines on board. Again we were struck by the enthusiasm of the trainers; everybody loves his (or her maybe…) job even though this means that one might be away from home for weeks…

On behalf of IMA Netherlands many thanks for this enthusiastic introduction into the world of ‘The People Who Make Van Oord’!

Company Visit to Van Oord

Some of you may have visited Groningen Seaports last year and enjoyed the spectacular boat trip through the Eemshaven. We also had the advantage to hear interesting details about port operation and the many companies active there.

Now we are happy to announce that we have the opportunity to visit one of those companies: Van Oord.

Van Oord is a Dutch family-owned company with over 150 years of experience as a global marine contractor focussing on dredging, oil & gas infrastructure and offshore wind. Four main drivers guide their vision to create a better world for future generations: the growing world population needs more space; maritime transport requires new and improved infrastructure; climate change is asking for better coastal protection; the demand for energy is growing and a renewable energy system is essential to provide the energy needed for the future.

Are you curious about this international company which has built the world around us? Do you still have this dream or fantasy to manage the operation of a large ship? Would you like to meet the people who make this dream come true?

This is your chance to explore, so come visit Van Oord.

  • Details

    When: March 23

    Where: At the head offices of Van Oord in Rotterdam (Schaardijk 211, 3063 NH) Click here for the route to Van Oord Rotterdam

    Time: From 13.30 till 18.00

    For registration go here. Please note that the registration for IMA-members and Corporate Partners has priority over non-members because of the limited capacity.

    The deadline for registration: 22 March 2018

    Step into the world of Van Oord

  • Programme


    opening by Paul Verheul,
    COO Van Oord.

    presentation on Van Oord.

    visit to the Heritage Museum:
    the history of Van Oord.

    visit to the simulators:
    the real deal.

    visit to the lounge for a meet & greet with many thanks to Sodexo.

    end of the visit.