"We've always stayed in Breda, apparently we feel at home here"
Spie's head office is located at the Huifakkerstraat in Breda. Lieve explains: "We have about a hundred project locations spread across the Netherlands, but Spie Nederland's head office is in Breda. This is where our roots lie. Many years ago we belonged to the company Electron, a company specialized in high and low voltage. Over the years we have grown through acquisitions, but we have always remained in Breda. Apparently we feel at home here."
Why we remain in Breda even after the company expanded considerably through acquisitions?
Why did we stay in Breda? It is a city that suits us in terms of logistics, it is easily accessible. In Breda we’re in a relatively small industrial area, not too far from the station and the highway and with relatively few traffic jams. We have a number of people who work for us who come from Belgium, and we can accommodate those from both sides of the border. In short, there is no reason not to be in Breda.
It’s also logical. Eventually we found a good office building with a large storage location for our telecom and high voltage business, that goes well together. And while perhaps not the center of the Netherlands, Breda has very good access to the rest of it, which makes it an ideal location for us.
So Breda's location is an important reason for SPIE to be located here?
I think accessibility is a very important factor for companies when they choose a location. The majority of the people who work here, live in the area. I think employees live in an area of about 50-60 kilometers around Breda. But we also have people who live in Zeeland, Antwerp and surroundings, Rotterdam, and Utrecht. So indeed, that's why Breda is such a good location. Many highways lead here.
Besides the location, are there other things in Breda that appeal to you?
What we like about Breda is that the city has a digital vision, a vision of transition. They want to be a city without borders. They aspire to be limitless, welcoming, and green, values that suit our company. This is why we like to contribute to the liveability of the city. I think it is important for the people in Breda that they see that it is a liveable city, hospitable, where you can live safely and well, the air is clean, food distribution and infrastructure work efficiently. I believe that if people live in a city that visibly contributes to a better world, they will automatically do so. As a company, we can contribute to this.
From how you talk about SPIE it's clear that the company is close to your heart. Is that correct?
I really enjoy working for SPIE. If you think about what we do, you will see that we are truly an essential part of the world in which we reside and work. You often don't notice it, but technology and engineering are such a big part of our lives. For example, you woke up this morning and checked your e-mail, but how does that e-mail get to your home, through a fibre or a copper cable, who maintains the mobile phone mast, who ensures that your company has power? Who enables all that, is the question? When you drive through a tunnel or over a bridge, who maintains it? A company like ours does.
So you play an important role in people's daily lives. Is that important to you?
We deal with the essential social topics and themes on a daily basis. In fact, we hang our services on it. It's about energy transition, about circularity, about industrial and digital transformation. We work with our customers but also with the customers behind them. For example, when we work with healthcare, we do so not only for the hospital itself, but also for the patients in the hospital. When we contribute to the energy transition, we contribute to a better world. That is very important to me, I want to contribute to a better world and think about it often. Who is building the digital and energy transformation or adaptations needed for climate change? We execute it, we have the technical skills to build it. The installation industry will only become more important, we are getting ready for that. We are very resilient and look to the future and its challenges with confidence.
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