As an entrepreneur, you can't do everything alone. The help, support and network of others always comes in handy if you want to grow and innovate. Peter Ketelaar, director of PRA Health Sciences in Assen knows that like no other. He regularly works with the NOM. "They know what they can do for us. And do just that."
PRA Health Sciences is an international and publicly traded drug research company. Pharmaceutical companies from all over the world knock on its door to test new drugs. In the Netherlands alone, about a thousand people work there. Peter: "Testing takes place in our clinic in Groningen and in the laboratory in Assen. There, with the help of healthy volunteers, we study drugs against all kinds of diseases and disorders. Examples include cardiovascular diseases, autoimmune diseases, cancer and brain disorders."
Whereas many companies turn to NOM for financial support, it is different for PRA Health Sciences. "People have a lot of money to spare for health," Peter explains, "so generally income and funding are not a problem for our company. We like working with NOM precisely because they have a broad network in the world of healthcare and science. That's where the real profit lies for us."
Referral when we need it
Peter lists several advantages of his cooperation with NOM. "For us, NOM is a good advisor when it comes to doing business in the Northern Netherlands. They know the market, the people and the institutions. For example, in the past we have received tips on good business locations. We can also always count on a referral to another company if we need one, or an introduction to other entrepreneurs. Most recently, NOM helped us to lobby government agencies, speeding up the necessary permit processes.
The cooperation with NOM is one without side effects
Meaning something to you
Peter now knows several people at NOM and says his experiences are generally positive. "With most of the advisors I have a good contact. A few of them stand out. I actually hate this word, but they are downright proactive. I regularly get a message or phone call to inquire how things are going and if there is anything else they can do for PRA HS. Often there is. It feels very nice to have specialists behind you who know what they can do for you and enjoy it."
For entrepreneurs in the North
Actually, Peter can think of few reasons not to contact NOM. "If you are an entrepreneur in the North and want to move forward with your idea or business, it is certainly valuable to see if you can join NOM's network." As a drug research specialist, he dares to say with confidence, "It is a collaboration without side effects. It may not benefit in all cases, but it never harms."