Van Ginkel Machines from Groenekan has been supplying tipping trailers to all corners of the globe for several decades. In recent years the company’s owner, Herbert van Ginkel, has invested significant sums in a sustainable factory and modern machinery in Hungary. With Visser & Visser’s support he has also gained a firm grip on the business processes and HR policy outside the Netherlands.
It is Saturday afternoon. While the Netherlands is enjoying the first of the spring sunshine, Herbert is busy working at his company in Groenekan. During the week he visits as many customers as possible. “A bird will catch more on the wing than in a tree”, he says, a salesman to the core.
VGM’s customers mainly consist of farmers, contractors, road builders, earth-moving firms and verge managers. Herbert is proud of his company and is not short of ideas about how to expand it. These are plans that the 35-year-old entrepreneur has been forced to put off for quite some time. “When we took over the firm in 2004, we had our hands full managing business in the Netherlands. In recent years we have made substantial investments in the modernization of our factory in Hungary. We now own it outright and have carried out a full renovation. The factory is now energy-efficient and is equipped with sustainable production lines that we can use to manufacture not only complete tipping trailers, but also semi-finished products for third parties, as well as containers. These are products that we are keen to bring to market in the future.”
Optimizing business processes
Besides modernizing the premises and production lines, VGM has also invested in its business processes. Herbert: “We were sending trailer loads of money to Hungary, but it didn’t feel to me like much money was coming back. I wanted to get a better handle on production, accounting and human resources at the factory. Wilbert Snoei from Visser & Visser International Business gave us all the support we needed to make this possible.”
In Hungary Wilbert put the business processes ‘under the microscope’, oversaw the restructuring of the management and put the right legal structure in place. VGM invested in qualified personnel, a bonus system and training programs. Herbert explains: “If you want to manage a company from a distance, you need to build in ways to control certain things. I can’t just ignore our 110 employees in Hungary. They are experts and you need to look after them. If you want to deliver tip-top products, you also need to make sure everything is tip-top for your staff. And that’s exactly what we’ve done”, Herbert says.
Identifying the issues
Herbert is extremely happy with the assistance he has received from Visser & Visser International Business. “Wilbert is really smart and has a wealth of international experience. He really managed to identify the issues for us. Although he started working with us just three years ago, he has already traveled to Hungary over 30 times. He is incredibly committed and is there right beside you whenever you need him. I really can depend on him. What he does goes far beyond your expectations.”
Herbert is looking to the future with confidence. “I’m pleased that we’ve now laid solid foundations. Our production processes are so well structured now that we are able to increase capacity. That means we can serve our customers even more quickly. We are well equipped in terms of machinery and can manufacture anything, from A through to Z. Everything is in our own hands and we also now have control of our activities outside the Netherlands. That’s great, as it gives us the potential to grow. How far can I see us growing? The sky’s the limit. We’re at the top of the pile when it comes to product quality and service and that’s where I want us to stay.”