Interview

Our industry knowledge makes us the ideal discussion partner for a DGA

JBR assists entrepreneurs in strategic issues, corporate finance and restructuring. With extensive sector knowledge, a personal approach and a hands-on mentality.
'We always want to be at the table with the decision-makers within a company.'

Looking far ahead while keeping a keen eye on rapidly changing circumstances.

Looking far ahead while keeping a keen eye on rapidly changing conditions. Translating global trends into their clients' daily business. And a hands-on mentality where necessary. That typifies JBR's services and the attitude of the consultancy's specialists. 'Thanks to our deep-rooted knowledge of six sectors and extensive international network, we are two phone calls away from any director-major shareholder in the market,' says Rick ter Maat, principal at JBR. 'For each sector we are very well versed and that makes us an ideal discussion partner for a decision maker.'

Harold Brummelhuis, also a principal, concurs, "We offer sometimes surprising solutions by combining corporate finance and strategy with an in-depth knowledge of what's going on in the market.

 

'Because of our international network, we are two phone calls away from any dga in the market'

 

Rotterdam roots JBR is an independent consultancy firm that has been active in the areas of strategic issues, corporate finance and restructuring for over thirty-five years. JBR's roots are in Rotterdam, where the firm was founded in 1984 by namesakes Jeltsma, Van Biert and Randoe. Today, only the B - of Kees van Biert - is still involved in the firm. A total of 38 people currently work at JBR. Continued learning, sharing of experience and high-level knowledge transfer is central. The principals, such as Ter Maat and Brummelhuis, work at JBR to develop their own practice.

Although the consultancy moved to Zeist in the early 1990s, the Port of Rotterdam is never far away in JBR's meeting rooms. On a wall unit are miniatures of tugboats and other maritime souvenirs. Many of JBR's clients still come from the maritime and offshore sector. But in the meantime its services have also expanded to the energy & environment, food & agri, healthcare, industrial markets, digital transformation & IT sectors.

JBR's clients usually come from the top end of the SME sector, with an annual turnover of ten million euros or more. Foreign companies and listed or internationally operating (family) businesses also find their way to Zeist. Ter Maat: 'We take a personal approach. Because no matter how small or large the company, we want to sit at the table with the decision-makers. That way we can deliver the most added value.'

 

'We take a personal approach. Because no matter how small or how large the company, we want to be at the table with the decision-makers. That way we can deliver the most added value.'

 

Technology Acceleration

 

Within JBR, Ter Maat is an expert in the maritime and offshore sector; for Brummelhuis, food production & agriculture is his specialty. In order to understand the latest trends and developments in their industry, vet them and make them concrete for their clients, they regularly form a team of core members and ambassadors to brainstorm. The core members consist of JBR consultants and the ambassadors are mainly industry experts, including experienced entrepreneurs.

One of the topics of discussion is the effect of the corona crisis on industries and the developments resulting from it.

In his sector, for example, Brummelhuis sees that technology has accelerated under the influence of the corona crisis. 'In the agribusiness sector, workers can no longer work right next to each other, but at one and a half meters. That has accelerated the use of technology, such as sensors, internet of things and artificial intelligence, in the greenhouse, for example. I don't see that declining again immediately, because entrepreneurs also see that it makes their business model more future-proof.'

 

'In agribusiness, workers can no longer work right next to each other, but at one and a half meters. That has accelerated the use of technology, such as sensors, internet of things and artificial intelligence, in the greenhouse, for example.'

 

Because a significant amount of digital technology knowledge is lacking within the agribusiness sector, technology companies are trying to gain a foothold. This development is resulting in an increase in acquisitions within the sector. In April, for example, JBR accompanied the purchase of a minority stake in Dutch high-tech greenhouse construction company Certhon by Japanese robotics specialist DENSO. Brummelhuis: 'When we were unable to travel due to the coronavirus, the transaction closed digitally. It is nice to see that transactions can also be completed in this way.'

 

Physical encounters

 

Another long-term trend the JBR duo sees in the takeover market is that deals do go ahead, but simply take longer. For example, more explanation is needed about the impact of the corona crisis on the business model, there are longer legal discussions due to uncertainty, and physical meetings with (foreign) buyers cannot be organized as easily.

'Foreign strategic buyers may take longer to think about how synergy can start to be realized within a purchased company, without many physical meetings being able to take place,' said Ter Maat. 'As travel to high-risk countries has become more difficult, having an active international network is becoming increasingly important. We are affiliated with the Global M&A Partners, an international network of 34 corporate finance consultancies, and are the Benelux partner for it. That makes it possible for JBR to keep moving quickly in cross-border transactions.'

Source: Brookz 500, December 2020

Contact the team personally

http://Harold%20Brummelhuis

Harold Brummelhuis
Principal

http://Rick%20ter%20Maat

Rick ter Maat
Partner