In 2008 the creative industry in Amsterdam grew 11.2% and overall, 105 firms from 22 countries set up shop in Amsterdam. Today 40,000 people are active in developing and realizing new ideas, concepts or services representing some 20% of its working population.
In Advertising Age on June 15, Amsterdam is featured as ‘the industry’s talent trap’ in an article that describes a unique presence of creative agencies representing the global needs of prestigious clients including those of, ironically, both Nike and Adidas.
GyroHSR Amsterdam is no exception to this phenomenon and over 90% of our client base is represented by Global and European (or EMEA) headquarters based in The Netherlands and Belgium.
So what makes this city such a fruitful growing ground for global business?
Amsterdam is a global village or a world city on an intimate scale if you like. It is a bohemian English speaking city that stimulates creativity and exchange. With a business community within cycling distance and a well-connected international airport at a 15 minute drive.
Renowned for its open and tolerant culture it is the home to some 200 nationalities and offers a premium on work-life balance. It offers great infrastructure – Port to Europe – and a highly educated work force.
Amsterdam just ranks 25th on the Mercer 2008 Cost of Living Survey. Add to that an attractive tax climate and relatively mild labor conditions and we are there, almost.
In my opinion, the main driving factor behind Amsterdam’s success is the absence of a dominant domestic market. For centuries this has driven its culture to maintain honest and broadminded view and saved it from national centricity.
Because of the advantage of proximity and sometimes comparative scale, we often find HQ central resources being dragged into serving the national market needs of the location in which they are based. We see them grow into the habit of believing that these are representative for global or regional market conditions.
Instead in Amsterdam, there’s breathing space and the business of creativity can flourish.