Page 1


Food Trade Mission NPCC introduces Dutch companies to the Polish market

• HR Seminar - the balance between tech and touch • IGCC Survey - Poland has some work to do

63 Summer 2018


Bulletin Summer 2018 4






Director’s note


Matchmaking mission to Poland


HR Seminar – Keeping the balance between tech and touch

Dutch companies interested in doing business in Poland




Staf Beems


Huub Droogh


Lion Paauwe on Philips Lighting Finance Services Center in Łódź

New perspectives for HRM


Ben Jansen, CEO of Déhora speaks about flexibilization in an organisation




IGCC Survey - Poland in the eyes of foreign investors


Jaguar XE - the most fun car to drive in its class


Philips Lighting Finance Services Center opened in Łódź

Remco van der Kroft

issue 63




Director’s note Dear Reader, While travelling around Poland recently, visiting Poznań and Gdańsk in May, I heard many positive signals from our members about the Polish market. Most of those I talked to are doing well and they are happy with the current economic growth. And their remarks are backed up by the recent economic data. GDP in Q1 grew by 5.1 percent compared to the same quarter in 2017. Economists have highlighted the construction market, especially the public and housing sectors, as playing a large part in this success. This growth is not expected to last, however, and experts are predicting that GDP will be falling to 3.6 percent by the end of the year, due in part to the anticipated lower trade with Poland’s foreign partners. As the well-known saying goes, if it rains in Germany, it drizzles in Poland.

Bulletin is the quarterly magazine of the NetherlandsPolish Chamber of Commerce. It gives a voice to our members and informs about the activities the Chamber undertakes. The views expressed in the columns are theirs alone. The Editor-in-Chief is not responsible for the accuracy of the statements made by the columnists.

At the same time, there are not enough hands to do all the work. This is nothing new and I notice that many employers have already found their own solutions to this problem. Some mentioned increased flexibility, and that although employees are more willing to leave the companies, it is also easier to find good staff in the market place. At our HR seminar with Randstad Polska, Unilever, Déhora Consulting and 24/7 PR, which took place at the Netherlands Embassy in Warsaw, we learned that the social capital of companies plays a very important role in shaping the decisions of millennials to work for a particular company. Artificial intelligence, in the broadest sense, also has a big impact on the workforce and this shouldn’t be underestimated. Tech and touch should be in balance. We heard some excellent examples and received some valuable tips on how to work with Generation Z and how to improve results by better planning our workforce. Together with the other chambers from the International Group of Chambers of Commerce, and with AHK taking the lead, we recently organised our annual business survey. The results can be read in this issue of the Bulletin. They show that companies are generally satisfied with the economic performance of the country, although they are concerned about government institutions. Panellist Marcin Petrykowski from Standard & Poors gave his own view of the report: “All parameters show that the Polish economy will develop in a lasting way. We forecast GDP growth at 3.6% on average in the next few years, which is a good result in a world that is increasingly volatile. However, the risk is elsewhere, on the institutional side. The better Poland is able to show investors that it is a predictable partner, the more it will be able to attract foreign direct investments.” Finally, I would like to use this article to express our gratitude to our departing board member, Guusje Korthals Altes, who has been with us since 2014. Thank you for your invaluable cooperation and support! As a board member, you were involved in many of our projects and this gave us a lot of extra wind in our sails. On behalf of the whole team, I wish you all the very best in your new position as Netherlands Ambassador in Albania. In this issue of the Bulletin, you can also read more about our very busy second quarter at the chamber, with such activities as the matchmaking mission organised together with the NEC, and much more besides. I wish you all a happy holiday and I hope to see you after the summer at one of our events. Are we getting it right? Let me know at

Elro van den Burg

Managing Director of the Netherlands-Polish Chamber of Commerce



issue 63



agenda 8 September 2018 Orange Ball 2018

Activities of the Netherlands-Polish Chamber of Commerce

5 June 2018 BBQ Business Drink Time: 18:30-21:00 Location: Le Regina Kościelna 12 Warsaw

13 June 2018 CEO Level Dinner Time: 17:45-20.45 Location: Albertina Restaurant Dominikańska 3 Kraków

16 June 2018 Family Picnic Time: 13:00-17:00 Location: KontenerArt Ewangelicka Poznań

20 June 2018 Seminar - Doing Business in Poland Time: 14:30-19.00 Location: ING Bijlmerplein 888, 1102 MG Amsterdam The Netherlands

4 September 2018 Business Drink Location: Warsaw More info will be announced via our website

Location: Warsaw Time: 18.00-2:00 Mińska 65

13 September 2018 Company Visit – Bols Factory Location: Poznań More info will be announced via our website

18 September 2018 Beach BBQ Mixer Location: Gdańsk More info will be announced via our website

18 September 2018 Speed Business Mixer Location: Kraków More info will be announced via our website

October Transport Seminar Location: Poznań More info will be announced via our website

November Forum and Dutch Polish Business Awards Location: Netherlands More info will be announced via our website

Please follow our NPCC website: for an updated calendar issue 63




Trade Mission to Poland – 10 companies, over 30 business meetings and many opportunities

organises matchmaking for 10 companies On 9 and 10 April, the NEC (Netherlands Export Combination), together with the Netherlands-Polish Chamber of Commerce, organised a matchmaking mission to Poland for companies from the food sector. The goal of the mission was to offer direct and high-quality meetings for participants in the retail sector in Poland.

On Monday morning, the participants had their meetings in the premises of the Netherlands Embassy, which hosted the matchmaking. After that, some of the companies went for a store check, while other participants had their meetings in Warsaw or other places around Poland.

As in many other countries, grasping the opportunities offered by foreign markets is essential for Dutch companies in order to grow and prosper. As was demonstrated by the significant number of 10 participants present during this mission, Poland is a market of considerable interest.

Many of the participants used Tuesday to visit the World Food Fair in Warsaw, which was being organised this year for the sixth time. For those who didn’t have individual meetings after Tuesday, the trip ended on Tuesday evening with a visit to the Business Drink of the NPCC in the Holiday Inn in Warsaw.

Prior to the mission, there were two months of preparations to organise the tailor-made meetings with Polish partners. The individual screening and market search was followed by contacting and cold/warm calling by the chamber’s staff to set up the meetings with the requested partners. Each year, over 30 companies benefit from such matchmaking services.

During the meeting, there was a presentation by Edyta Kochlewska, Editor-in-Chief of the portal, who gave an interesting presentation about the main players on the Polish food market as well as on consumer behaviour. The speaker was organised by the Netherlands Embassy in Warsaw.


issue 63


A good example is Expert Cheese, who travelled from Kraków to Gdańsk and only met the other participants on Tuesday evening during the monthly business drink organised by the chamber.

“I’ve travelled 2000 km around Poland in a week” Sometimes we can focus too much on our own country and forget about Poland as we travel around Europe, but I was surprised by the visit and noticed that this country has a lot of potential.” I think that you were one of the participants that travelled the most around the country. You started from Kraków and travelled to Gdańsk in the north. Do you know how many kilometres you covered?

Steven Geurtsen, Export Sales Manager of Expert Cheese

Expert Cheese upgrades cheeses which have been classified as side flow by the producers. The company participated in the matchmaking mission to Poland organised by NEC and the Netherlands-Polish Chamber of Commerce. Bulletin talked to Steven Geurtsen, Export Sales Manager at Expert Cheese. Can you tell us something about your business?

“It must have been close to two thousand in a few days. I started my private trip at the weekend, and then on Monday at 8 o’clock I had my first meeting in Katowice. It was also surprising for me that there were two meetings planned for Monday. I thought maybe it’s not enough, but in the end I arrived back at the hotel at 19.00 and I realised that travelling takes quite a long time in this country.” And how was your experience with the companies? “The meetings I had were always with three people or more, so they all took the meetings very seriously. Some spoke English, others spoke German, and then they talked to each other in Polish, of course. I noticed that you must gain their trust, which cannot be done in one meeting, so I have plans for another trip to get to know the partners better.”

“Expert Cheese buys cheese from the big producers in Holland, Germany and Belgium. We clean the cheese and upgrade any products that may have had certain production problems, such as too high salt content. Sometimes, the specifications are so tight that even a slight deviation can result in a downgraded product. In such situations, the product can still be suitable for people who grate it or mix it, or who make milk with processed cheese. That is the market in which we operate.”

So a “quick win” is difficult unless you have some superior product that nobody has?

How do you see the Polish market?

When you try to build up a business, and the prices increase quickly, then the people you deal with have to get used to this new level and you can’t expect them to buy your products very quickly.”

“The Polish market is quite big and there are many producers with whom we would like to cooperate, such as Sertop, Jager, and also Polmek and Mlekovita. The market is quickly becoming modernised and the competitiveness of the Polish market is also increasing. I have noticed myself that the roads have improved, and that brings more efficient logistics. If you buy and sell, it must be possible to ship at the lowest cost possible because it is a competitive market, where each cent is important.” Why did you decide to participate in this mission from the NEC? “Personally speaking, it’s the first time I’ve used this mechanism of matchmaking as I’m the type of person who usually tries to find his own way. However, I just thought: “Let’s give it a try, why not?”

“That’s right. And sometimes you don’t come at the right moment and you need to go back. In the current dairy market in Western Europe, with all the changes and EU regulations, we see that the prices of milk, butter and other dairy products like cheese have been increasing quite rapidly.

Can you tell us a little more about the meetings you had? “All of the companies I met could become customers of Expert Cheese, I’m sure about that. It’s just that our market on the supplier side is drying up a bit so I don’t push them to buy when I’m not sure that I will have the products in stock. As I said, in most cases I didn’t go for the hard sell but I tried to build on the contact. So I helped them with some contacts abroad, for instance. This is a kind of free gift that I give in meetings like that in order to keep the contact for a longer time and it also helps me to go back to them when I have more in stock.”

issue 63






Ball 2018

September 8 Mińska 65, Warsaw


issue 63


Representatives of Brassica Trade finds a business partner on the first day of the matchmaking project

Peter de Goede from Noordhoek Cheese and Krzysztof Robalewski from Euroser at their first meeting organised by the NPCC

Noordhoek Cheese – Price is not the biggest issue You met several companies as part of the matchmaking process, what was your general impression? “I spoke to several companies and the impression was very good. We had meetings with important players in the market. We were asked to send some samples and product specifications, which means that they are interested at least and didn’t have the meeting just to check our prices. Therefore, I am really satisfied with the results of the matchmaking so far.” What did you learn from these conversations?

Peter de Goede, Commercial Manager of Noordhoek Cheese

Noordhoek Cheese was one of the participants in the matchmaking mission organised by the NPCC and NEC. The company was founded in 1998 and grates all types of cheese but their main product is grated mozzarella cheese, of which they are produce around 15,000 tons annually. The company exports to 12 countries inside the European Union. We talked to Peter de Goede, Commercial Manager of Noordhoek Cheese. You shared with us the story of how you started doing business on the Polish market. Can you tell us why you chose Poland? Peter de Goede: “Poland is a huge country of 38 million people and it has an economy with strong growth. We are currently remodelling our company and want to increase the capacity and sales volume. Poland is therefore an interesting market. From what I could gather from the companies that I talked to in Poland, the quality of the products from our competitors fluctuates a lot and this is where we stand out.”

“Well, in a way, we got confirmation of our initial understanding of the market, which is that they love Dutch cheese, they are looking for reliable partners and they are very enthusiastic about Dutch quality. In all the conversations, I had the impression that the meeting was not for nothing and that they were willing to do business. Especially when I saw that one of the companies from Kraków was willing to come to Warsaw for one meeting, spending 3 hours in the car and 1 hour in the meeting. That showed that they really were interested.” Did you find out anything new about your market in Poland? “I learned that mozzarella is very popular in Poland. I did a small store check in Makro and shelves covering a couple of square metres were filled with all types of grated mozzarella. Some of them from Polish producers were not always of the best quality and, surprisingly, some of the prices were pretty high, like in the Netherlands, Germany or France.” So how do you see the price level of your product in Poland? “There is always a big competition and pressure on the price. Although I think that, of course, you have to be competitive in the market, the current market is also looking for reliable partners, continuous quality and a wide range of products. These are much bigger issues.”

issue 63




news and events

CEO Business Breakfast with Prof. Orłowski On 21st February, the Netherlands-Polish Chamber of Commerce, in cooperation with 5 other bilateral international chambers, organised a CEO Business Breakfast in Sopot. The meeting was attended by over 50 participants representing various business sectors and regions.

The aim of the meeting was to create a networking platform for the Presidents and Managing Directors of member companies to discuss the challenges they’re facing, come up with new solutions and generally to inspire one another. Additionally, the organisers invited Prof. Orłowski to speak at the meeting Prof. Orłowski explains recent development trends on the Polish market

to explain some of the development trends in the Polish, European and world economies. His talk was followed by some intriguing questions and very insightful answers. The event was held in the beautiful surroundings of the Sheraton Hotel in Sopot, which is located in a prestigious area of the city and offers a perfect view of the sea. We would like to thank all participating chambers for their cooperation and also PWC for supporting this event.

CEOs present at the business breakfast in Gdańsk

Business Drink with the Belgians On 6th March, the NPCC, together with the Belgian Business Chamber, had the pleasure to organise an International Business Drink in the InterContinental Hotel. The event, which was sponsored by Ortec and Subko & Co, attracted over 60 guests from both chambers.

Ortec and also the representative from Subko&Co, who both gave interesting presentations and provided a valuable insight into their companies, for their support of the event.

The official part ended with the business card lottery. Guests were then able to take advantage of a networking opportunity as well as tasting the delicious food and beverages served by the InterContinental Hotel.

The official part of the evening began with welcome speeches from Katarzyna Węcławiak, General Manager of the Belgian Business Chamber, and Elro van den Burg, Managing Director of the NPCC. Then attention was focused on Stefan van Herpen - an NPCC Board Member for the past five years - who has recently made the move to Shanghai to take on new challenges. A warm farewell speech was given by the Chairman of the Chamber, Remco van der Kroft. Centre stage was then taken by the sponsors of the event. We would like to thank Jarosław Matyjaszek from


issue 63


Members of the NPCC and BBC exchange business cards


news and events

Company Visit to Amazon On 13th March, a group of our Members had the unique opportunity to take part in a company visit to one of the biggest logistics centres in Poland – Amazon. During the tour, the participants were able to hear some interesting facts about the company and observe the 4 logistical processes at the production facility and the well-ordered chain of operations related to the flow of materials. All the integrated processes are created by the Logistics System. The result of the logistics process is the logistics service, i.e. the appropriate transport or storage of products in quality, quantity and time in line with the expectations of customers, the history behind Amazon, the structure of the company and the way of thinking as well. At the end of the tour, the group of 21 members had an excellent lunch. There

A group of entrepreneurs visiting the premises of the Amazon logistics centre

was a lot of integration among the group and the participants were able to exchange their opinions and views freely, all in

a great family atmosphere. It was a unique experience!

Great turnout at the SBM in Poznań

Representatives of Exact, the event sponsor, at the Speed Business Mixer

and representatives of BZWBK, Skańska and Domański Zakrzewski Palinka, all of whom gave very interesting views on the subject. Participants of the SBM in Poznań give their elevator pitches

On 27th March, the Netherlands-Polish Chamber of Commerce, along with seven other bilateral chambers, organised a Speed Business Mixer in Poznań. The official part of the evening began with the representatives of the various chambers welcoming the

120 attendees and wishing them luck in making new business contacts. On this occasion, the meeting was also enriched with a business panel on Opportunities and Threats for Entrepreneurs in 2018. Among the panellists were: Jacek Punda from Exact

The panel was followed by a speed mixer, giving the participants the chance to take part in a series of direct meetings where they could present their companies, exchange business cards, make new contacts and find new customers, suppliers or investors. We would like to thank Exact, the software vendor company, for being the Sponsor and supporting this event!

issue 63




news and events

Spring Business Drink Warsaw On 10th April, NPCC had the pleasure to organise its monthly Business Drink at the Holiday Inn Hotel in Warsaw. The meeting attracted over 50 guests and also included a presentation on the current state of the Polish food market. The event was also attended by a number of special guests – the participants of a Trade Mission organised jointly by the NPCC, the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands and NEC (Netherlands Export Combination). We would like to say a big thank you to Mrs. Edyta Kochlewska from dlahandlu. pl for her interesting presentation about the main players on the Polish food market and consumer behaviour.

A group of Dutch investors mingle with members of the NPCC

After the official part of the evening, guests had the chance to network while tasting some delicious food and drinks from Holiday Inn,

Business Mixer in Gdańsk

and also some wonderful Dutch cheese from our member, Kraina Serów!

business, all the while maximizing the time of the participants and accelerating their networking. The event took place in the surroundings of the Torus business building, which affords a wonderful panoramic view of Gdańsk. After the official part of the event, the attendees participated in a networking session where they exchanged business cards and enjoyed the delicious international food prepared by Alchemia Wina. We would like to thank the sponsors of this event - Torus, Scotwork, Avis and, most of all, Aneta Pernak-Makus from PIKA, market leader in the management of information and knowledge on the basis of documents - for their support.

Members of the four bilateral chambers taking part in the speed business meeting part of the event

On 24th April, the Netherlands-Polish Chamber of Commerce, in collaboration with 3 other bilateral chambers, organised a Speed Business Mixer in Gdańsk. The event attracted over 90 participants. The meeting started with a business panel on Business Trends on the Polish Market – Opportunities and Challenges in 2018. The panellists gave us a fresh perspective on the


issue 63


subject and shared their experiences and recent conclusions. The panel was followed by a Speed Mixer. This concept is well-known as an interesting and results-driven formula where participants take part in a series of group mini-meetings which helps them to quickly and efficiently identify potential customers, give helpful referral sources and find partners in

Over 90 participants attended the Speed Business Mixer in Gdańsk


news and events

Chamber Lab at the WUT Business School Participants were also able to hear about which professions will be more resistant to the changes, and which could find their futures under threat. The presentation inspired a number of questions about the present and future reality of work and the labour market. The official part of the evening ended with the traditional business card lottery. Congratulations to the winners: Mr. Jarosław Matyjaszek from Ortec and Mr. Paweł Seliga from Exact. At the end of the evening, all the guests were able to enjoy some delicious food and wine and take advantage of the networking opportunities.

Dr. Urbański presents recent trends in the field of robotics and technology in business

On 10th May, we had the great pleasure to meet with our Members at the Business Drink – Chamber Lab. The event took place at the Warsaw University of Technology Business School. The surroundings of the university were a great setting in which to enjoy the speech

given by Dr. Paweł Urbański – Director of the WUT Business School. Dr. Urbański used many interesting facts and assumptions to inform the audience about the latest trends in the field of robotics and the technologies that are being used to develop machines that could replace human capital.

Warsaw University of Technology Business School hosts the Business Drink in May

Lunch with Minister Kwieciński A Business Lunch meeting with Mr. Jerzy Kwieciński, Minister of Investment and Development, and Mr. Paweł Borys, President of the Polish Development Fund, took place on Wednesday 9th May at the Renaissance Warsaw Airport Hotel. The meeting was organised by 15 bilateral chambers of commerce representing the interests of the business communities of 22 nationalities.

Minister of Investment and Development, underlines the importance of foreign investors for the Polish economy

The event gave the 80 participants who attended the chance to hear some fresh perspectives on the Polish economic situation and ask questions about the future of foreign direct investment in Poland.

Those present at the meeting had the chance to put questions to Minister Kwieciński

issue 63



HR Seminar

- Keeping the balance between tech and touch The NPCC had the great pleasure to invite its members to an HR Seminar at the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Warsaw. Representatives from Randstad Polska, 24/7 Communication, DÊhora Consulting and Unilever all gave very interesting presentations on the present and future reality of human resources and participants in the morning seminar were brought up-to-date on the latest trends and dos and don’ts for hiring in the current times. The main partner of the event was Randstad Polska. In his opening words, Jeroen Tiel, Regional Managing Director Poland and Eastern Europe at Randstad, talked about artificial intelligence and how important it is for companies to keep up with the latest trends regarding technology. As a good example of this, he mentioned the old pagers or beepers that were widely produced by Motorola


issue 63


in the 1980s. After mobile phones took over that market, Motorola then found that it had lost ground with that trend and lost a large part of its market share.

Ben Jansen, CEO of DĂŠhora Consulting, explains the future of workforce planning

and he showed how to plan, monitor and analyse the workforce and associated costs down to the operational level of a business, across all business functions. The next issue - how to recruit and work with different age groups - was raised by Marta Jechna, Group Account Manager, and Paweł Modzelewski, Head of Strategy, both from 24/7 Communication. This topic is often highlighted as being of great importance for our members since workplaces are being increasingly taken over by the younger generations.

Members of five bilateral Chambers joined the HR Seminar

Monika Hryniszyn, HR Director of Randstad Polska, presented the results of a 2018 study carried out for Randstad by Deloitte. This research, which was conducted in more than 11,000 companies worldwide, with 192 in Poland, showed what trends are currently taking over the HR market. We learned from this that the power of the individual is increasing and also that the social capital of companies plays a large part in shaping the selection of workplace decisions by millennials. Another current trend is the use of new technologies to enhance productivity and efficiency, though companies should always consider the impact of these solutions on the entire work environment, including people. The next speaker from Randstad was Marcin Sieńczyk, Chief Technology Innovation Officer, who focused on artificial intelligence and robotics, especially its influence on the talent economy, and he also showed us which jobs will be most affected in the future by these new technologies. We learned more about the changes in the recruitment process caused by the use of new technology, where candi­ dates can now apply 24x7, applications and screening questionnaires are autoscored, responses are automated, etc. In theory, a candidate can apply online, take an online assessment, record a video interview and be hired without ever talking to a live person and all in the span of 24 hours. Marcin also talked about how Randstad is adjusting its own recruitment processes in line with these changes. The next part of the seminar started with a presentation by Ben Jansen, CEO of Déhora Consulting, who gave a very interesting speech about the future of workforce planning. He described certain solutions for companies which are currently still working with insufficient, disparate spreadsheets or custom-built applications

This transformation is reshaping the nature of work and ushering it in a need for updated management strategies. Marta and Paweł discussed the different approach to life adopted by different age groups, such as the baby boomers, Generation X, millennials and Generation Z. They all have a different attitude to change which, in general, comes down to the fact that the older the generation, the more they perceive change as an obstacle.

The benefits of digital process


Removes Bias & allows for Blind Sifting


More Inclusive Approach, with Greater Flexibility


Enhanced Data & Analytics Capability


Simplification: Cost Effective/Efficient


Candidate Centric & Immersive


Competitive Advantage

The last speaker was Sandra Lebik, Recruitment and Employer Branding Manager at Unilever, who presented her company’s take on digital recruitment and discussed some of the advantages of implementing a fully digital recruitment process, such as avoiding recruiter bias. During the seminar, we also learned that it is critical to provide some human touch points when designing your digital recruiting process. First and foremost, if candidates are not comfortable with some of the technology or have specific questions, it’s important to configure ways for them to connect with actual people. Asking a couple of additional questions may take a little more time and perhaps cost a little more money, but how much time and money is wasted in having candidates come on-site for interviews who ultimately do not fit? In the interaction with the candidate, therefore, it is vital to keep a balance between tech and touch.

issue 63




from our members

BNP Paribas Group acquires Raiffeisen Bank International

Banking and Factoring, in affluent/private banking, as well as its retail network, will reinforce the role of BGŻ BNP Paribas as a key player in the Polish banking sector and its ability to support the growth of the Polish economy.

BNP Paribas Group and Raiffeisen Bank International have reached an agreement for the acquisition of the core banking operations of Raiffeisen Bank Polska, which are to be combined with the subsidiary of BNP Paribas in Poland, BGŻ BNP Paribas. The Core Bank consists of the business of Raiffeisen Bank Polska excluding the foreign currency retail mortgage loan portfolio and excluding a limited amount of other assets. Corporate and retail gross loans of the Core

Bank amount to PLN 19 billion and customer deposits to PLN 34 billion at year-end 2017. Thanks to the complementary activities of the two banks, the transaction will further strengthen BGŻ BNP Paribas’s position as the no. 6 bank on the Polish market. The combined bank would have attained a market share of over 6% in loans and deposits at year-end 2017. The longstanding expertise of the teams at the Core Bank, in particular in SME and Corporate

With new cross-selling opportunities, the transaction will also enhance the position of all the other BNP Paribas Group subsidiaries operating in Poland (BNP Paribas Securities Services, BNP Paribas Leasing Solutions, BNP Paribas Cardif, Arval) in accordance with the Group’s integrated model. Moreover, the integration of the Core Bank within the BNP Paribas Group will provide its clients with access to the BNP Paribas international network and expertise. Przemek Gdanski, CEO of BGŻ BNPP, declared: “I believe that this transaction will strengthen our position amongst the largest banks in Poland, bringing us much closer to the top 5. We are glad to become, with this transaction, an active participant in the consolidation of the Polish banking sector.”

Grupa Żywiec receives an award for best HR Management Every year, the Polish Association of Human Resources Management awards companies that apply modern HR management practices which take into consideration the good of their employees and it also recognises the most interesting HR initiatives and best practices.

covering such areas as recruitment and outplacement, employee development, remuneration and incentive systems, internal communication and employer branding. The research focused on the practical dimensions of the policy and the HR tools applied.

This year, the jury of the competition awarded the CERTIFICATION project of Sales Representatives and Sales Managers in Grupa Żywiec with the prestigious ‘HR Highest Quality’ Award.

Andrzej Borczyk, HR Director of Grupa Żywiec, says: “We want to build an admired, effective and innovative company together.

CERTIFICATION is a multi-stage process during which the participants confirm their high competences and work standards which they show while undertaking everyday activities. The awarding of the ‘HR Highest Quality’ Award was preceded by an objective review of the personnel policy within Grupa Żywiec,


issue 63


The CERTIFICATION project of Sales Representatives and Sales Managers in the Żywiec Group is one of such activities that allows us to develop the competences of the sales department. Thanks to this, we have the chance to constantly improve and build our competitive advantage. This programme is also a great example of how the HR department can build additional value in a business.”


of Planet Car Lease and Hitachi Capital On February 26, 2018, Hitachi Capital Polska Sp. z o.o. (HCPL), a leading provider of comprehensive operating leasing, completed the acquisition process of Planet Car Lease Polska Sp. z o.o. (Planet), a subsidiary of Planet Holding International BV.

in their daily work and it means it can adapt its service to fully meet the requirements of the users. When preparing an offer for an HCPL customer, the needs are carefully researched at the production stage of the planned vehicle, which means that the optimal car is produced which will meet all the user’s requirements. For LCVs and HGVs, HCPL offers two main forms of cooperation: leasing and renting.

Hitachi Capital Polska has been present on the Polish market since 2014, when it acquired the shares of Corpo Flota, a Polish company operating in the industry since 2005. HCPL deals with the long-term rental, leasing and fleet management of both passenger cars and delivery vehicles. It currently serves over 10,000 cars in both large corporations and also small and medium-sized enterprises. Hitachi Capital Polska focuses on educating customers about the benefits of car fleet outsourcing because, even though long-term rental and leasing services would appear to be well-known, people still feel more secure owning a car, sometimes forgetting about the benefits and trends that are present in other highly developed countries. HCPL believes that it is better for a company to pass on its fleet management work to a company that specialises in that work and which also has more experience and opportunities because of scale that allows it to concentrate on the development of its core business. What is more, it is also more fun to drive a car that you have always dreamed of driving, rather than one that is simply within your budget. Rental and leasing services give you the possibility to have cars from different manufacturers and classes and it’s also easy to change to a newer model after the contract has finished without wasting time and money selling your old one. The most important thing for Hitachi Capital Polska is customer satisfaction, which is why it adapts to the situation and always looks for the best solutions together with its clients. It cares about the customer not only before signing the contract, but throughout the duration of the contract as well. HCPL keeps its promises. In 2016, HCPL identified a group of specialists who were tasked with developing the area of specialist cars. In its first few months of operation, the Department of Light Commercial Vehicles & Heavy Goods Vehicles focused on the development of the service base for light commercial vehicles and heavy goods vehicles. It is working hard every day to meet the expectations of vehicle users for whom time is at a premium. The goal of HCPL is to offer a highquality service so that customers can have all their needs related to the purchase of a vehicle and its components fulfilled in one place, as well as enabling them to plan the proper servicing. Hitachi Capital Polska has therefore expanded its service network by establishing service cooperation with many manufacturers and, in addition, it has also created a special Truck Assistance hotline, which is supported by dedicated employees assigned to a particular customer. This solution helps HCPL to know about the problems which its customers face

Leased vehicles are offered in line with the specifications expressed by the customer. The leasing offer includes operating or financial leasing and the customer can choose whether or not to have an own payment option, or the redemption option at the end of the contract. Leased vehicles can be either new vehicles, or leaseback vehicles from the customer’s fleet. The lessee also has additional options, such as insurance, management, service or fuel cards. At the same time, the long-term car rental service is also developing dynamically, which involves providing a vehicle to the lessee for a pre-determined period of time in exchange for a fixed remuneration. This model of cooperation improves the use of the fleet, reduces downtime and the risk related to losses, and cuts administrative costs. It also shortens the time for handling invoices. The rental service includes vehicle financing as well as additional elements such as the comprehensive servicing of the vehicle and its components, tyre service, 24/7/365 assistance, insurance and reporting of the damage adjustment management process as well as fuel cards and telematics as options. Hitachi Capital Polska can prepare a wide range of offers for its customers tailored to their specific requirements. Contact HCPL and tell us what you need. You will be treated in an individual and personal way. Your expectations will be met with an offer that will both save you time in your fleet management and also improve the condition of your company.




Column Staf Beems Entrepreneur and owner of Silesia Consulting

THE SUMMER OF 2018 When you read this, it will be summer – at least let us hope so – and also let us hope that a good summer will follow the excellent month of April. It’s a good moment for a little reflection, maybe on your terrace in the sun. I - as usual – am sitting on a terrace and I happen to meet a member of the European Parliament. I’m enjoying a small beer, while he/she - we have to be modern here - permits himself/herself a glass of champagne. He/she is one of the 751 who travel between Brussels, Strasbourg and their „small beer” back at home. When he/she travels, it’s by business class, with a salary plus expenses of around 150,000 euro a year. Not bad for a job without any responsibility. I cannot help but start up a conversation with this person and I ask him/her about the latest successes, achievements or other high points of the Parliament in 2018 so far. When asked about the meetings - they meet 12 times a year for 4 days each time in Strasbourg and 6 times a year for 2 days each time in Brussels - he/she explains that these meetings are exhausting. But please tell me what’s been achieved. It took some time but here some examples: -B  rexit, although we’ve contracted out the negotiations to external specialists, - we’ve blocked strong vacuum cleaners (some years ago but anyway), - we’ve started a programme that means clean drinking water should be available all over Europe (maybe not possible but it sounds good), - we discussed the strange promotion of Mr. Selmayer (Juncker’s friend) and we showed our anger but we left it as it was, - we asked consultants about the advantages and disadvantages of keeping ‘summer time’, - we are starting a programme against plastic and especially cotton wool buds (watten stokjes) but don’t worry - every country can decide for themselves whether they will follow our advice. We make news and that is what we are here for. But what else? What about corruption in certain countries, the political situation in Hungary, Poland, Turkey, Russia, fish quotas, subsidies for farmers, business relations with the USA, the invasion of China and all their acquisitions, all the cars in Europe with their headlights on day and night, a ban on using mobile phones when driving a car, a simple and understandable car registration system (like the Germans have, for example), refugees, the asylum tsunami…? Sorry sir, but unfortunately I don’t have time anymore. It is now August and I need my holiday. But don’t worry, after the summer we will come up with some new initiatives. I am sitting on another terrace and again drinking a small beer. Next to me is a member of the Dutch parliament. He/She is one of the 150 members taking home a salary of around 120,000 euro a year. Not bad, taking into consideration the summer holiday of two - I repeat two - months, not to mention two weeks off at Easter, the Autumn holiday of two weeks and three weeks off around Christmas. Excuse me, but that’s almost 4 months? Correct. But please, tell me what has been achieved, discussed or solved. We’ve discussed the dividend tax, we’ve debated the missing and/or hidden documents during the evening/morning and we’ve listened to the fairy tales of Halbe Zijlstra. You’re right, we should have known it, but we let him make his own story. We know about the salaries of teachers, we were shocked about the social benefits fraud, we watched Eurlings and his position on the International

Olympic Committee and we were happy that finally a CDA person was in the news for beating his girlfriend. A welcome diversion from all the VVD stories. We have Baudet who complained about the TV weather forecaster, we are angry about the French couple who left their car in Beekse Bergen and we asked in Parliament about the rapper Boef. We have talked with Jeroen van de Veer about the new salary of the ING CEO - how dare they increase the salary for a job where you have to work day and night and are responsible for tens of thousands of employees? All of a sudden we changed our position regarding the gas in Groningen. But we agreed and discussed not at all how to finance it. Next government. Then we talked about KLM and Air France. We know KLM is a French company, so what can we do? But we talked about it! You know, it’s true that politicians have no vision. It’s a pity that 15 colleagues have now left Parliament after the elections. We understand that many of our voters voted in the local elections, but if they don’t want to vote, it is their choice. Yes, you’re right, only 10 million people voted in the parliamentary elections and have obviously lost interest, but so what? In normal life, you have a problem when you have fewer customers, but we are happy; whatever happens, we will remain together, all 150 of us. The simple people in time have to take retirement, but we are proud that the oldest member of parliament is only 75 years old. And be realistic, it is not an easy job. Attending parliamentary meetings is exhausting – all that sitting down, compulsory attendance, if you want, you can listen but you don’t need to understand the subject, you already know the outcome, maybe you have to vote but you have to follow your leader, you have to twitter, you shouldn’t fall asleep and, last but not least, you are never responsible. I am sitting on another terrace drinking my small ‘piwo’. Next to me is a member of the Polish Parliament. Compared to his/her foreign colleagues, the salary is only around PLN 150,000 a year. Frustrating, he/she told me, but compared to local salaries, we are not badly paid. Alas, I am a member of the opposition, which means we cannot actually do a lot and, as you can see, we don’t. Ok, we create problems within our own group, otherwise people could think we are lazy or not interested. And if it continues, I still have the option to change from one party to another. I would not be the first to do so and definitely not the last. I was told that Poland is the only country where members of parliament change so easily from one party to another. Flexible thinking. We are like football players. Of course, we have important issues, such as relations with the EU, Russia, the USA, corruption, you name it. But do you really expect me to solve those issues? Let’s take the EU as an example. „Barking dogs seldom bite” and your fellow countryman Timmermans - a nice person, he speaks languages and is modern like football players, rappers and youngsters, just with a grey beard. Is it true that he is a socialist, but a real one, accepting a job in Brussels with such a salary? Very clever. I agree not everything in our country is wonderful. We still have our start-up problems, democracy is not easy and we are getting new elections. Moreover, remember what the Czech president mentioned recently - that during the Warsaw pact we were more free than now in the EU. Yes, you’re right, we’ve changed some issues - judges, petrol prices, Sunday shopping (which may be bad for the economy, it’s true). We realise there are problems with handicapped children and the health care system in general. We’re also facing problems with asylum seekers and the tree-cutting issue, but we have an excellent economy and we have money. Finally, I am on my own terrace, drinking a lovely glass of wine. Is this the new world? Alas, it’s true. I could start to panic - what will happen to my children, or my grandchildren? But it’s even worse than that. What will happen to all these unborn children, to their parents and their children? Let me finish, I am waiting for the politician who will try to ban the zip-fastener in your trousers in case you close it too fast and injure your private parts. Or the one who will propose that all men should wear a hat or cap in summer to avoid getting sunburnt! Sit on your terrace, therefore, or any other terrace, and enjoy your life. And be positive, despite your short holiday. Smile, drink, read a book and do not take too many selfies. Be yourselves, that’s the most important thing! Happy Holiday!

This column is written à titre personnel and does not necessarily reflect the views of the NPCC board or its members.


issue 63


Column Huub Droogh Huub Droogh is an urbanist and partner of RDH Urban in Poznań

Rich life... Taxpayers, journalists, members of parliament and even our liberal prime minister, all spoke up three months ago when one of the leading Dutch banks raised the salary of its CEO to over 3 million euro a year. At more or less the same time, the current Polish national government came under fire due to the bonuses paid by the former prime minister to certain ‘excellently operating’ government officials. What is fair financial compensation for your job? Are there any valid objective indicators to justify the opinion whether someone’s remuneration is reasonable? The level of salaries is one of those explosive discussion topics best avoided during family parties (as well as which make of car to drive, women’s rights and, if you live in the UK, Brexit). At the same time, salaries are an important driving force in life for many people. Families leave friends and social bonds to relocate to another city or country, commuters get stuck in traffic jams, and many ‘carriertigers’ on a daily basis put up with bad jokes from their insufferable bosses for it. Research has proved the lack of a causal relationship between earning an above-average salary and satisfaction in life. Despite this fact, many of us prefer to believe that the additional comfort and material status which additional money provides is worth the effort to obtain it. Working and earning as a free entrepreneur, risking personal bankruptcy if the business doesn’t work out the way we expected, cannot be compared with filling a post which is paid by the taxpayer. Assuming the entrepreneur involved pays the due amount of taxes (in the proper country, of course), the level of his or her income is never questioned. But how much money do you need as a passionate ‘system’ banker, or the ‘prezes’ of a state-owned oil company, radio station or airline? Often-used arguments for paying exceptionally high salaries include the ‘heavy responsibilities’ or the ‘rare talent that should be preserved in the country’s interest’. In the case of the Dutch bank,

both arguments were effectively countered by Prime Minister Rutte (‘toedeledoki’ - if you think it isn’t enough, just leave!). His arguments could apply perfectly to Polish state-owned companies were it not for the fact that such job appointments are principally rewards for political loyalty. And the value of loyalty is priceless, isn’t it? How does a decent minister’s reimbursement compensate for the late evening debates in parliament and (in Poland) the aboveaverage risk of becoming involved in a car crash in your official limo? How seriously can you take a bonus for a minister? I’m trying to imagine the Monday morning after the recent parliamentary debate in The Hague about the abolition of Dutch ‘Vennootschapsbelasting’ (corporate tax). Klaas Dijkhof, Sybrand van Haersma Buma, Alexander Pechtold and Gert-Jan Segers were discussing the bonus for PM Rutte due to the fact he had again saved the coalition with his inimitable verbal agility. What is it worth to them - 10,000 Euro, 15, 50…? Listening to final farewell speeches during cremations and funerals, I have never heard any eulogistic memories of the deceased referring to his or her exceptional income. “He was a very unpleasant character, lied to many voters and was often disrespectful in his behaviour, but he got a bonus from his prime minister…” I don’t think we will hear this in the future at some politician’s funeral. However, in some cases it could be refreshingly honest. Loving father, caring mother, warm grandmother or close friend these are the valued characteristics of those who have passed away. Specific memories about those unique characteristics which make people human and worth being around. They are more valuable than any earned salary or bonus at the moment when we reach the ‘final curtain’. But where will we find such rare talents prepared to work in the public interest? Maybe it is those who have already said ‘toedeledoki’ and disappeared from public debate?

This column is written à titre personnel and does not necessarily reflect the views of the NPCC board or its members.

issue 63



Philips opens Financial Services Centre in Łódź Philips Lighting has a long history in Poland, with its first light bulb production dating back to the early years of the previous century. Its current investment, the establishing of a financial centre of excellence, once again shows Philips Lighting’s confidence and high expectations for the Polish market. Can you tell us something more about this latest step taken by Philips Lighting? Lion Paauwe, Director of Philips Lighting Finance Services Center: “At the beginning of October, we announced the setting-up of our financial services centre with 120 employees. This was the result of our decision to concentrate all finance activities that are still carried out in various countries in Europe into this financial services centre in Łódź. We are continuing a strong tradition in this city in 2003 Philips Lighting was the first company in Łódź to set up a shared services centre, so we were one of the pioneers in the city. In 2007, those shared services centres were taken over by Infosys BPO and, as a result, all our transactional work was outsourced to that company. We are currently rolling out the next phase, which is the establishment of a financial services centre to control the nontransaction work, so to speak, which is the remaining work in the processes of purchase-to-pay, record to report and order to cash. All those activities will therefore be taken from other European countries and moved to one location and concentrated here in Łódź.” So the work that you will be doing in this centre is more complex and with a bigger responsibility than that which is currently outsourced to Infosys? “Yes, because Infosys is doing purely transactional work, but the work which we are migrating is of a non-transactional nature. Firstly, this is about end-to-end process management. An example is the purchase-to-pay process, where activities need to be managed across various functions, such as procurement, the supply chain and finance, and it must be ensured that the processes run as smoothly as possible. Secondly, it’s about managing service providers. We are currently managing service providers in all countries, which is a suboptimal situation, and we believe that we can make improvements


issue 63


when we concentrate this in one location. The third main element is about judgmental or decision-based processes which will also all move here. So after the establishment of the centre, there will be no more activities of purchase-to-pay, record to report or order to cash in European countries in Philips Lighting.” What is the thinking behind this step? “The line of thinking was that we were too fragmented and suboptimally managed due to the fact that we were doing things in different ways in many countries. We cannot really optimise our activities at this moment. So by putting them in one location, we think that we can get some economies of scale but also drive the standardisation, simplification and optimisation of our processes.” Can you tell us something more about synchronizing the activities? “In some processes or sub-processes, we might already have some standards and good practices at the right level, which we will onboard immediately together with the transitions, but in other cases there will not be such standards. So we will implement them or take them over as they are, and then after the migration is finished we will do the optimisation phase and standardisation. In the end, we will need to go over every individual work instruction and see what we need to take over, and where we can standardise, on a very detailed level.” Is there any work coming back from Infosys to your new Finance Services Center? “No, all transactional activities in Infosys will stay where they are. At this moment, we don’t have any intention of bringing back those activities.” But right now you are implementing a large synergy operation. Why not also look at Infosys and optimise this as well? “We at Philips Lighting and Infosys are implementing Lean together within our finance activities and therefore driving further the standardisation, simplification and optimisation of our joint processes. We have a strict blueprint on who does which part of the process and we think this is the right split in responsibilities. We do the optimisation over the process axis, and not necessarily by bringing activities back in-house.”

In 2003 you were one of the first to set up a shared services centre here in Łódź, and today with this finance centre you are again one of the forerunners on the market, aren’t you?

In terms of the job market, you are not looking for regular BPO Centre staff, but for a different level of people. Is it difficult to find those people in Łódź?

“Yes, with this new set-up and all those new activities brought together in the three centres of excellence (purchase-to-pay, order to cash and record to report), we have created a kind of control tower or governance centre next to the outsourced shared services centres of Infosys, which will be pretty unique in this market. We see that not many companies have those kinds of activities in their shared services centers yet, and we also offer opportunities for people from Łódź to grow in their careers in finance without having to move to a different city like Warsaw. We provide this possibility to stay in their city and develop themselves in the financial sector.”

“In Łódź there are, of course, many people working in finance, and more than 10,000 people working in the shared services environment, so there is a large pool of resources. We are looking for more experienced people, and potentially looking at companies with more higher-value activities since the people there will have better education, better experience and they can more smoothly go into our organisation. Sometimes we will need to hire people from other companies which are not in the shared services industry.”

Why did Philips Lighting decide to establish this centre in Łódź? “If you look at all the years that we have been in Łódź, since 2003, and the fact that Infosys in Łódź employed a lot of people who still work or used to work for Philips Lighting, there is a large labour pool of thousands of people who used to work either directly or indirectly for Philips. We hope to be able to attract those people to come back and work with us again. That’s one of the reasons. The second reason is that the big cities in Poland, like Warsaw, Kraków or Wrocław, are now totally full, with overheated markets. And of the 2nd-tier cities, with Łódź and Katowice on the one side and Gdańsk and Poznań on the other, the latter are also getting crowded and, in terms of the labour market, are very tight. So you see that Katowice and Łódź are the cities which are quite big in terms of the number of inhabitants and which still have a rather low level of people working in the shared services industry. There is much more potential for growth there and the labour market is still normal. If you compare Łódź to Warsaw, the employee turnover in Łódź is approximately 50% lower on average in shared services and the availability of skilled people who speak foreign languages is also good in Łódź.” How important was the support of the city of Łódź in your decision to locate in this city? “The city of Łódź is very supportive in the whole setting-up process in terms of what they do for new start-ups and for companies setting up in the area. There are the benefits of the special economic zone and support on the labour market and they even arrange free publicity with press conferences and other events.” Can you tell us a bit more? Does that imply that you have the mobile number of the mayor and can call her any time you have a problem in the city? “In Łódź most companies have at least one person that they can connect with. Always. So you get at least one fixed contact for yourself. However, we also did a joint press conference together with the mayor to announce the setting-up of the financial services centre, and we will do the same when we move into our new building. The mayor has already committed to the opening and said that she will again support us with our publicity. With regards to the announcement of the Finance Services Center, they made sure that the press release was in all the local and regional newspapers, magazines and on social media. They promote lots of things, and they are very supportive in helping us to start up our business.”

And how is the education environment in Łódź? Is it good? Can you attract people that come directly from universities as well? How do you see that? “There is a large pool of people becoming available every year from the universities in Łódź. However, that’s not the level we need. We are really looking for experienced people, and we search for only a few junior people, though they should have at least 2-3 years of work experience in certain areas. And seniors often have team leader roles. A team leader in a BPO centre may not, in most cases, become a team leader in our organisation. All managers must be an expert. We also brand the positions differently because it’s really a higher added value that we are looking for around controlling the process.” Philips Lighting has been active in Poland since the inter-war period, and this country is almost like a second home market for your company. However, the financial services centre is all about sensitive work and decisions. Was it difficult for Philips Lighting to move some of your core work to a different country other than the Netherlands? “Of course, it is always a difficult decision to move part of your work away from the country where you have your headquarters. For many other companies that use BPO providers, this work is often still in their home country or concentrated in headquarters and not nearshored to a location in Eastern Europe, for instance. However, for us it is the best solution. There is really a large pool of very well-educated people in Poland so the skills level is very high and in some areas even higher than in the Netherlands. Also moving this activity helps us to standardise in a very rigid way. That helps a lot when making the decision to move activities. In the end, we want to optimise our processes, simplify and standardise, and then it’s the result that counts.” One of the growing industries in Poland is shared services centres or BPO centres. Do you believe it will become a trend that companies will bring high-value work to BPO centres in Poland, just like you have done? “I think that more and more companies will do these things, but at this moment it is pretty unique. We also talked with Deloitte, who helped us with our finance transformation, and they also confirmed this. For sure, there are more centres of excellence being set up in Eastern Europe, so we are not the only one. But in Łódź, however, we are still one of the first with this kind of activity and to this extent. And just like with our first activities that we started back in 2003, I expect more companies to follow in our footsteps.”

issue 63





= risk assessment + vision

September 8 Mińska 65, Warsaw

What is your equation for progress in this disruptive world? Numbers are only digits without the common denominator for success – people power. At ING we can help your business thrive by tapping into technology and innovation while harnessing the limitless potential of the human spirit.

World, here I come

Wholesale Banking


issue 63


Flexibilisation: why organisations can’t ignore it any longer Ben Jansen, CEO of Déhora and a leading expert in the field of workforce planning, has been a keen proponent of flexibilisation for many years now. We asked him why flexibilisation was so important, and why organisations can’t afford to ignore it any longer. What is ‘Sustainable Flexibilisation’ exactly? “Flexibilisation is all about making it possible for an organisation to adapt relatively easily to changing circumstances. In other words, it makes your organisation agile and adaptable. There are all kinds of flexibilisation strategies nowadays; the art, of course, is to create the ideal balance between all the available resources at your disposal. And to make sure you have a strategy that is sustainable. Insiders call this ‘good flex’. In simple terms, this is when you have flexibility as an employer and as an employee. Various examples of this will be discussed during the congress.”

So why can’t organisations afford to ignore flexibilisation any longer? “There is a well-known saying that the only constant in an organisation is change. In any case, most businesses operate in a dynamic environment, with unpredictability and increasing complexity. This is the inevitable effect of globalisation, technologisation and individualisation.”

So how can flexibilisation help? “It’s very simple. It is clear to me that many organisations simply won’t survive if they are unable to keep up with the latest trends in the market. Just look at all the recent examples. Especially in the retail market, like Mexx and Halfords.”

Are there any pitfalls you have to look out for with flexibilisation? “Choosing and implementing the right flexibility strategy takes knowledge and experience, especially in cases where you want to be careful because sustainability is a serious issue. It is therefore essential to choose a flexibility strategy that will actually help you to achieve the mission of your organisation. At the same time, the co-determination of the employees also has to be given proper consideration. If you don’t, then your flexibilisation strategy will be doomed to failure.”

Why are you so passionate about this subject? Have you always been fascinated by it? “I first got interested in flexibilisation 30 years ago and, to be honest, I still find it fascinating even today. Why? Well there are two main reasons. First of all, the multi-disciplinary nature of flexibility makes it a very multi-faceted subject. In other words, it is a broad subject that has an impact on just about every area of workforce organisation. Secondly, flexibilisation has become a critical issue in today’s business world. It is an issue that affects both employers and employees in very significant ways. Especially if it isn’t sustainable …”

issue 63



Contribution Embassy Bulletin NPCC June Polish-Dutch scientific cooperation in animal husbandry On April 16, the Embassy hosted an alumni meeting to mark the 100th anniversary of Wageningen University (WUR). Dr. Martin Scholten from WUR Animal Sciences Group and Marek Szyndel from SGGW informed over 30 Polish alumni about Polish-Dutch cooperation and the importance of alumni having knowledge of both cultures. In the days after the alumni meeting, over 40 scientists from WUR and 3 Polish animal institutes gathered to discuss the existing

cooperation in the field of animal sciences. Since the signing of a cooperation agreement at the Embassy in late 2015, over 15 joint research projects (in the fields of breeding, animal welfare, salmonella, antibiotics and African Swine Fever among others) have been carried out, with a further 10 currently under preparation. On the initiative of the Embassy, several Dutch companies shared their research experiences with the scientists, contributing to stronger connections between science and industry.

Signing of a Letter of Intent In May, ZLTO (Southern Agriculture and Horticulture Organization), HAS University of Applied Sciences, O-gen and RDH signed a Letter of Intent during a workshop at the Embassy, expressing their

interest in sharing knowledge and cooperation in the transition of urban and rural areas. During the workshop, opportunities within the Lublin area were explored and discussed. In addition, the Agriculture Department of the Embassy organised a visit for a large Dutch soft fruit delegation to the region.

Polish-Dutch Agrologistics Conference A conference on agrologistics was organised at the Embassy on May 17. Inspired by Dutch agrologistic concepts and with discussions from multi-angle perspectives (government-research-industry) in combination with Polish experiences and examples, the conference was organised in cooperation with AgroFreshPark Łódź, a PPP-project of a Dutch consortium and the Dutch Enterprise Agency (RVO).

Several COP24-related activities in the Netherlands In June, the Embassy will co-organise together with its Polish and Dutch partners several activities in the Netherlands. They will be included in a series of activities as part of the upcoming 24th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP24) in Katowice (to take place in December 2018): First of all, there will be Holland Circular Economy Week (HCEW) between 1114 June. The Netherlands has initiated a governmentwide programme to develop the circular economy in the Netherlands by 2050 in order to maximise the reuse of raw materials, which will also benefit the climate. As this can only be done with international partners, the Netherlands is organising HCEW to stimulate cooperation. Delegations from several countries, including Poland, will participate in a plenary conference, field visits to innovative Circular Economy projects and a matchmaking session to find potential business partners. More information can be found at


issue 63


Secondly, a Dutch-Polish seminar on efficient and circular water usage will take place on June 13, organised jointly by the Embassy, the Netherlands Water Partnership (NWP), Envaqua and the Polish ‘Open Eyes Economy on Tour’, with former Polish Deputy Prime Minister, Professor Jerzy Hausner. During the seminar, renowned Dutch and Polish water companies and institutes will discuss several complex cases relating to water usage and how innovative circular solutions can be applied to those cases. Last but not least, in conjunction with the Dutch Enterprise Agency (RVO) and the Polish Ministry of Energy, the Embassy is organising a Polish expert trip to the Netherlands in the field of electromobility (e-mobility). During the trip, Polish experts from the public as well as the private sector will visit innovative Dutch e-mobility projects at several locations in the Netherlands, become acquainted with Dutch central and local government policy in this field and discuss possibilities for future cooperation with Dutch experts from the field. The Polish delegation will consist of 13 representatives from central government, the municipalities, business and also knowledge institutes.

Cultural Calendar May 2018 – July 2018 25.05 – 24.06 Photomonth Kraków Iris Sikking (1968) is an independent curator, trained film editor and photo historian. As a curator, she positions herself in the overlapping fields of photography and video art and she is this year’s guest curator of the 16th edition of Kraków Photomonth 2018! The history of the Kraków Photomonth Festival dates back to 2001, when the Foundation for Visual Arts was established. The same year

also marked the successful start of the festival. Since then, it has taken many forms in search of its own identity and as a response to the everchanging face of photography. And, of course, Photomonth Kraków will bring some outstanding Dutch artists to Poland.

16 & 17.06 The Dutch view at Element Talks in Warsaw! Element Talks is a platform for the exchange of knowledge about the entrepreneurial spirit of the designer and the practical aspects of their work. They show how to take care of finances and copyrights, build client relationships, and negotiate and cooperate with others. Their conferences, which every year attract around 3000 designers from all over Europe, feature talks from world-class designers who share their successes and failures by showing the designer’s profession from the inside.

From the Netherlands , Adrian & Gidi will attend this year’s event, as well as José Bernabé. Adrian & Gidi - Adrian Woods & Gidi van Maarseveen - are a young photography duo based in Amsterdam in the Netherlands, while José Bernabé is a typography artist, designer & illustrator currently based in the city of Amsterdam whose main focus is on custom typography, lettering and illustration.

13.07 – 01.10 Tango at 16m2 in Warsaw The exhibition Tango at 16m2 in Galeria Zachęta investigates the smallest nucleus of the city, the dwelling unit. The project wants to showcase and reflect upon the broad range of conditions and solutions found within the history of Polish housing, and at the same time critically assesses the contemporary situation.

The exhibition was put together by a Dutch-Italian-Polish team of curators based in Amsterdam who originally designed it for the Biennale in Venice.

Loesje is in Warsaw! though critical at the same time, they stimulate the readers to see things from a new perspective and also take action in their own lives. In cooperation with Galeria Zachęta, the following Loesje workshops will be organised as part of Tango at 16m2: Who doesn’t know Loesje? The girl with some very outspoken opinions and a typical view of the reality of everyday life. A Loesje writing workshop is a creative group activity, where the participants make short texts (one-liners) using the special text writing method developed by Loesje. As Loesje texts are mostly positive and funny,

August 4th – Workshop in English September 22nd – Workshop in Polish Want to join in? Check the following websites:, www. and

Request for small-scale sponsorship! FreeLING Foundation is a non-profit organisation that regularly organises workshops for professional translators (PL/NL) in specialist areas, such as business, legal and medical matters. They offer training possibilities for translators at a reasonable cost. Due to changes in our funding possibilities, the embassy is no longer able to financially support FreeLING with small-scale subsidies. Maybe YOU can help FreeLING to continue their valuable work to provide the Polish-Dutch community with highly-skilled translators?

For more information, please contact either the cultural attaché at the embassy or FreeLING directly. Embassy: Martin van Dijk (022) 559 12 53 FreeLING,

issue 63



New members of

the Netherlands-Polish Chamber of Commerce

Nationale-Nederlanden Nationale-Nederlanden is a stable insurance company with a long tradition in Poland. The company secures the financial futures of more than half a million clients and their families. NationaleNederlanden offers financial solutions which address its clients’ needs: simple and understandable insurance, pension and investment products. Its portfolio includes individual protection and investment insurance. The company also has group insurance for companies and entrepreneurs who want to protect their employees. Nationale-Nederlanden is a socially responsible company which engages in important social issues such as health – for example, each year the firm supports a series of events such as World Cancer Prevention Day, which promotes cancer prevention and a healthy lifestyle. Nationale-Nederlanden Topiel 12, 00-342 Warszawa +48 801 20 30 40

Thaumatec “Thaum” is a basic unit of magic in the Discworld saga written by Terry Pratchett. Thaumatec creates magic with cuttingedge technologies – dedicated to the Internet of Things and Embedded Systems. The company has carried out many development projects for worldwide companies – in Silicon Valley and top digital innovation hubs in Europe. We know how to use this experience in order to make sure our customers can benefit from the huge opportunities of Embedded Systems and Internet of Things technologies. Thaumatec Adama Mickiewicza 20C 51-619 Wroclaw +48 668 639 591

Dave Lorjé Scotwork SCOTWORK was formed in 1975 and provides training in negotiating skills and negotiating consultancy for industry, commerce, the professions and government. We have coached over 200,000 senior managers in 24 languages. We have grown into the world’s number one independent negotiation consultancy, operating in 38 countries, and we work with organisations large and small across all sectors. All the SCOTWORK course materials, theory and methodology have been developed in-house by the SCOTWORK team and are unique to them. The skills taught reflect practical business experience, provide straightforward advice and can be immediately applied in a work situation. SCOTWORK is involved in teaching negotiating skills in over 60 countries and has permanent offices in 38 countries. Scotwork Syta 78, 02-993 Warszawa +48 22 313 17 85


issue 63


My name is Dave Lorjé and I am a 43-year-old sourcing professional. I have worked for multiple Dutch multinationals in the fields of sourcing, new product launches and logistics. I am married to a Polish wife and the father of 3 children. My family and I will move to Poland to live in the south of Bielsko Biała in August 2018. From that time, I will start working as an independent consultant in the field of sourcing. I have a wide knowledge of languages as I am a native Dutch speaker and also speak Polish, English and German. Company: My company is not registered or named yet. My goal is to be an intermediary between Dutch and Polish companies mainly in the field of sourcing steel machined parts of any kind. I want to help Dutch companies to source in Poland and to enable Polish companies to get in touch with potential Dutch customers. My working area will depend on the duration and size of the project, but my home base will be Bielsko. Dave Lorjé

New members of

the Netherlands-Polish Chamber of Commerce

GS Services We are a specialised recruitment company offering complex solutions related to: - developing and maintaining Global Shared Services. We have a competitive edge and we help to create a modern kind of enterprise / business. - handling Recruitment Services where we implement recruitment processes in Success Fee, Try & Hire and Outsourcing models. - searching for new recruitment opportunities by means of Outplacement Services, through which we offer support and give advice on how to develop any career path. We are proud to boast that: •a  s experts in our field of work, we can offer the highest quality services at every stage of the recruitment process, • we provide professional support in searching for and selecting specialists and managerial staff from various fields, •w  e offer solutions facilitating the growth of services and budget optimisation related to the recruitment process in your company, • we are open to suggestions, and our high level of commitment will help to make your company’s performance more efficient. Our knowledge and experience enable us to create dedicated solutions which ensure we can efficiently recruit the very best specialists available and tailor our cooperation model to your company’s needs. GS Services Koprzywiańska 20 04-285 Warsaw +48 514 560 531

DLA PIPER DLA Piper is a global law firm with 4,200 lawyers located in more than 40 countries throughout Europe, the Middle East, Asia Pacific and the Americas, positioning it to help companies with their legal needs anywhere in the world. DLA Piper in Poland provides legal and tax advisory services to international corporations and financial institutions, as well as to local enterprises operating in all industry sectors, through the following specialist legal departments: • Corporate, including M&A, capital markets, private equity, corporate finance • Finance & Projects • Regulatory, including energy and life sciences • Litigation and Arbitration • Tax • Intellectual Property and Technology • Employment • Real Estate. DLA Piper’s lawyers and tax advisers are recognised for their knowledge of business issues and for providing practical legal advice. We offer clients optimal legal solutions geared towards ensuring measurable business benefits. Building strong and long-lasting client relationships is the guiding force of DLA Piper’s business strategy and future development. DLA PIPER I. L. Pereca 1 00-849 Warsaw +48 22 540 74 00


Moving Moments Bulletin

issue 63


IGCC Survey results: Poland has some issues to work on According to foreign investors, Poland’s competitive advantage lies in its EU membership, quality of staff, availability of local subcontractors and increasingly better infrastructure. Foreign companies operating in Poland see a decrease in the availability of qualified employees. 90% of investors claim that they would invest in Poland again, however. This percentage is 5.5 percentage points lower than last year. In this year’s European investment attractiveness ranking, Poland is second after Czechia – these are the main results of the 13th edition of the Economic Survey. The Netherlands-Polish Chamber of Commerce, together with other members of the International Group of Chambers of Commerce and with the German Chamber taking the lead, recently organised its annual survey among foreign investors in Poland. This 13th edition of the survey was conducted in February and March 2018 and covered 300 foreign capital companies operating in Poland and around 1400 investors in more than a dozen other European countries, giving a total number of approximately 1700 respondents.The survey was based on a total of 21 investment attractiveness factors. Like last year, EU membership and employee qualifications were the highest-


issue 63


Michael Kern, Managing Director of AHK Poland, presents the survey results

rated factors according to foreign companies operating in Poland. The adequacy of higher education was ranked third, and employee productivity and motivation came fourth. The quality and availability of local subcontractors and the quality of infrastructure were also seen by investors as being among Poland’s competitive advantages. The conditions for research and development, access to state and EU funding, and labour costs (all of which scored around 3 out of a possible 5 points) were placed in the middle part of the ranking. However, the companies indicated a decrease in the availability of qualified employees (5 points down in the attractiveness factors

The entrepreneurs surveyed this year have an optimistic view of their company’s situation, with 64.3% claiming it to be good, and 32.5 % seeing it as satisfactory. The majority of respondents (56.6%) predict that the situation will be better this year, while 46.7% foresee an increase in turnover, 45.4% expect an increase in employment, and 36.7 predict an increase in investment expenditure in 2018. For the 300 foreign companies operating in Poland that participated in this year’s survey, Poland is one of the regional leaders in Central and Eastern Europe when it comes to investment attractiveness. According to the 1700 entrepreneurs from 20 other European countries that took part in the survey, Poland lies in second place, behind Czechia, which has been the case for the last three years since 2016. Ewa Mikos, Development Director of Siemens (left) and Marcin Petrykowski, Regional Head for Central and Eastern Europe of rating agency Standard & Poors

ranking) and pressure on remuneration. The respondents, on average, predict a 6.2% growth in salaries in 2018.

Estonia is up to third place (from fourth last year), ahead of Slovakia (third last year). The differences between the countries in terms of the number of points are tiny, just fractions of a point. In 2018, Czechia scored 4.11 out of a possible 6 points, Poland scored 3.99 points, Estonia 3.98 points, and Slovakia almost 3.98 points (slightly less than Estonia).

The evaluation of the adequacy of vocational training has a better ranking this year (up by 6 positions, to 2.88 points out of a possible 5), as well as the flexibility of working hours (up by 4 positions, to 2.84 points). Just like in 2016 and 2017, the lowest-scoring factors in 2018 are the political and social stability as well as the predictability of economic policies in Poland. Both of them scored approximately 2.4 points out of a possible 5. Good prospects for 2018 The vast majority of respondents in the 2018 Economic Survey see the current condition of the Polish economy in a positive light. Half of them (50.0%) assessed it as satisfactory, 46.6% as good, and only 3.6% expressed a negative opinion. In the opinion of one third of respondents (33.8%), the prospects for the Polish economy in 2018 are better than last year. Over half of the companies (54.4%) think they remain unchanged.

Tomasz Pisula, Chairman of Polish Investment and Trade Agency PAIH (left) and Katarzyna Soszka-Ogrodnik, Press Officer of AHK Poland

issue 63



NPCC Test Drive

Jaguar XE

The most fun car to drive in its class The NPCC took the Jaguar XE out for a test drive on the roads on the north side of Warsaw and we found it to be an appealing car which is fun to drive with great looks and outstanding fuel efficiency. The Jaguar XE is a cool-looking car and a refreshing antidote to the boring corporate car park. This is a car that you buy for its looks. The capacity of the boot is much smaller than its rivals in its class and, truth be told, you have to climb into the back. The space there is certainly not for three adult people. The back seat may not be that large, but it is a lot more comfortable in the front. We especially like the elegant design element below the windscreen, the Riva Hoop, taken from the famous Riva speed boats, which flows from one side of the dashboard to the other and envelopes the driver to create a comfortable cabin feel. The interior all looks very stylish, although I don’t think the quality of the materials is as good as Jaguar’s German rivals. It feels so sporty when you sit behind the wheel, it’s as if it was tailor-made for us. It’s spot on! All entry-level cars have leather seats as standard.

And the equipment level is pretty good as well. All models have parking sensors and satellite navigation and the standard audio system in the car is simply great. Jaguar is also known for its innovation. Most of the body is made from aluminium to keep the weight down and the construction extremely stiff. The Wi-Fi hotspot allows several devices to be connected at the same time, and the Jaguar app offers options to remotely close the windows, set the climate control or close the doors. There is even an airbag in the body to protect pedestrians. BMW may try to convince you that they have made the ultimate driving machine but, sorry guys, the Jaguar XE handles better than the BMW III series. It is definitely the most fun car to drive in its class. It’s got the best steering and the best chassis balance as well. The car holds corners like it has claws. And the best thing is that, unlike with the A4 or the 3 series, you don’t have to pay for the extras because the standard version is already fully loaded with options. However, one of the major weaknesses of the XE is the visibility. The back window is so small it is like looking through a letterbox. And there is quite a big blind spot in the side window. On the other hand, it is a nice car to cruise in and it is very economical compared to its competitors on the market. The eight-speed automatic gearbox also works excellently. Overall, some of the materials feel a little cheap and its rivals are just a bit more practical but the Jaguar XE looks gorgeous and is great fun to drive.

We were invited to test drive the car by Car4Woman, run by Planet Car Lease which offers car rental programmes specifically tailored to women’s needs. For more information, go to


issue 63


Column Remco van der Kroft Advocaat (Dutch licensed lawyer) and partner of Olczak-Klimek Van der Kroft Węgiełek

A DIGITAL WORLD The Polish government wants to go digital and we are making progress, but with a few ups and downs along the way. A few months before the current government was voted in, Poland made it possible to set up a company through the internet, although at the end of the process a court clerk (referendarz in Polish) would still have to check all the paperwork. I used to brag about how advanced Poland was compared to the Netherlands, where you need a notary to set up a company. My record for setting up a new company for a Dutch investor was just two days. Unfortunately, in an effort to clamp down on VAT fraud, the current government has made it almost impossible for foreign investors to use this method to set up a company. And yet a completely different approach is taken when it comes to filing financial statements: “Let’s first make digital filing mandatory and then we’ll make it possible for all companies to comply.” Pursuant to the recent changes in the law on the National Court Register, financial statements have to be filed through the internet by a board member registered in the commercial register with a PESEL (personal number). Unfortunately, they didn’t think about Dutch board members who don’t possess a PESEL number. As things stand, however, it’s up to lawyers to find ways around these problems, so I am not complaining. The chamber recently hosted a lecture by Dr. Paweł Urbański, director of the Warsaw University of Technology Business School, on robotics and artificial intelligence in the workplace, which is another subject that will also affect lawyers. In the US, asked 20 experienced lawyers to identify the legal risks in 5 non-disclosure agreements (NDAs). It took them an average of 92 minutes to complete the task and the best lawyer had a 94% accuracy rate (85% on average) in spotting the risks. It took Artificial Intelligence, which had been specially programmed

to analyse the 5 NDAs, just 26 seconds to achieve 94% accuracy. Although I wish that Polish courts would replace court clerks with artificial intelligence, it does force me to reflect on the future of my own business. Law firms in Poland today, like most companies, are struggling to find the right people; people with the right work ethic to work in client service. This point was discussed during a recent seminar on HR organised by the chamber at the Dutch Embassy. I learned that it is important to understand the generation gap. We in Generation X (born between 1965 and 1979) see work as an exciting journey (unlike our parents for whom work was simply a duty). However, the millennials, or Generation Y, see work as a challenge; they work to live and want to find happiness outside the workplace. I can still relate to that but, as we can see from a table created by 24/7 PR at, it turns out that today’s under-22s are looking for “variety and self-realisation”, whatever that may be. According to Unilever, the way to deal with this is to completely digitalise the recruitment process by letting candidates play online games (so maybe my son is right about the benefits of gaming?) and have the candidates record an interview with the questions posed by AI. The interview is then analysed by AI based on facial expressions, and the process ends with more games played at Unilever HQ. This is the digital future, but the Polish government is obviously still struggling. Much to my relief, I recently learned at a course on online civil proceedings in the Netherlands that the switch to digital was being postponed indefinitely because there were too many hiccups in the trial phase. For us Dutch people in Poland, who like to complain about this country, it is good to realise that the Netherlands also gets it wrong a lot of the time.

This column is written à titre personnel and does not necessarily reflect the views of the NPCC board or its members.

issue 63





Nasza oferta: ‹^`UHQLTKé\NV[LYTPUV^` ‹SLHZPUN ‹WYVZ[HHKTPUPZ[YHJQH ‹RY}[RV[LYTPUV^H^`WVǏ`JaHSUPHH\[ Hitachi Capital Polska Sp. z o.o. XO3DOLVDGRZD:DUV]DZD ReklamaHitachi210x145.indd 1



issue 63



Bulletin no. 63 Summer 2018  

The magazine ‘Bulletin’ is our flagship member and business partner publication. In the magazine you can read interesting interviews, articl...

Bulletin no. 63 Summer 2018  

The magazine ‘Bulletin’ is our flagship member and business partner publication. In the magazine you can read interesting interviews, articl...