Fact Sheet: Smart Industry

Industry Outlook

The industry sector in the Netherlands his currently on a boom with over 86% utilization rate (June 2018). Flagship is the VDL group, which produces trucks, busses and Mini's in their mobility corporation. The hardware sector, located in the Eindhoven area at the high-tech campus has also gained from the increased interest in high tech components for the chips industry and related technology. In the near future, the Dutch industry sector foresees a flattening of the growth due to the stronger Euro, and the lack of skilled labour in the market. Smart industry, and especially robotization is considered a key theme to move to a sustainably competitive industry sector in the Netherlands. It is acknowledged that digitalization of production and logistics are key investments in the current Industry 4.0 timeframe (smart industry program NL 2017-2021 by the Dutch government, and the Netherlands is strongly looking at Denmark and Finland to lead the way in digital maturity.


Smart Industry has picked up in the Netherlands this year. Rabobank recognized the following trends:

  • customer centric production: extremely short delivery times, flexibility and specialization
  • production chain optimization both in R&D and in production
  • close network and supply chain cooperation and joint development to keep up with rapid technology developments
  • Rise of the smart industry concepts in the Netherlands
  • Cost efficiency and production optimization with process innovation and automation.
  • Adding services such as consulting and support to the product mix
  • Increased demand for clean tech products

Did you know?

  • Finnish software providers are already active and popular in the Dutch Smart industry sector?
  • Modultek/Roima opened an office to sell its PLM solution, Delfoi and Visual Components offer their solutions via partners in Holland.
  • TU Delft is the leading university for smart industry, and trains its students using Visual Components.
  • Delft and Eindhoven rank among the foreign universities most selected by students from Finland.

Market Opportunities

  • The Dutch government has reserved funding for innovation for smart industry. This funding is available to support innovations in products, service design or innovation/digitalization of manufacturing.
  • Itemization and PLM are now becoming rapidly commonplace in the mid-sized manufacturers, mainly due to chain production in regional hubs.
  • Robotization is viewed as the answer to low cost production and rapid adaption to altered products.
  • Intensified cooperation (outsourcing parts of the process) demands better supply chain and APS.
  • Eindhoven increases its role as hardware lead capital of Europe, with NXP, Philips and ASML as cornerstones of Brainport.
  • Heavy industries and maritime is growing, demanding new investments in their equipment.
  • There is a huge demand for embedded software engineers, an expertise area in Finland.

How can we help you?

We work and worked with several Finnish suppliers to the industry and from experience we know that they received a welcoming ear in the Netherlands.

When positioned well (typically midrange), Finnish products, software and services provide perfect value to the Dutch manufacturing industry.

Want to know more?

Contact Petra Wullings for a chat about the Smart Industry in the Netherlands, we are more than happy to help you! Keep posted about the business opportunity news in The Netherlands and receive all updated Fact Sheets in your mailbox.