Much of this growth is down to our firm’s expansion of its international activities


As I write this foreword, I look back with pride on a great year for us.

A year of many new developments. Houthoff Buruma has become Houthoff, an accessible name for our international business contacts, but still recognisable.

Our sharper positioning, Going Beyond, has met with a positive response from clients and the labour market. Clients know that they can call on us when the going gets tough, and our extremely positive recruitment results have shown that the best students want to come and work with us. A new generation is ready to join the Houthoff family.

Among our colleagues, professional skill, leadership, enterprise and team spirit are now embedded in our day-to-day activities as key values of Going Beyond. It will hardly have escaped anyone’s notice that we have become the principal sponsor of the Dutch National Opera & Ballet, with whom we have already set up an intensive collaboration. We have also successfully expanded the Tax practice in a short space of time with a new partner, Paulus Merks, and we are working hard on doubling the size of the practice group as a whole. We have designed our sharper sector strategy and Kirsten Berger, a specialist lawyer in the Energy sector, has joined us as a partner. Alongside these developments, a foundation has been laid for us to establish a presence in major economic centres by appointing representatives. In short, we are working hard on many fronts on Houthoff’s development. The foundation for further growth has been laid.

Much of this growth is down to our firm’s expansion of its international activities. With our own offices in Brussels, London and New York, representatives in Singapore and Houston and our strong International Friends and Lex Mundi networks, we can respond more effectively to the international demands of our clients. The theme of this edition of the alumni magazine is therefore internationalisation. Read on to find out how Houthoff is going international on many fronts.

As part of our collaboration with the Dutch National Opera & Ballet, we speak of ‘two parallel worlds  coming together’. The same is also true of the international ambitions of both organisations, as is clear from the interview with Els van der Plas, General Director of the NO&B.

You, our alumni, are also increasingly moving into international roles. Nils Vernooij has taken up the challenge in India and returned alumna Esther Veltman gives us an insight into her life and work as Houthoff’s representative in Singapore.

Important legal themes are developing in an international context. Thomas de Weerd and alumnus Wiebe de Haan, General Counsel and Compliance and Data Protection Officer at MediaMarkt Nederland, share their vision of privacy within the context of the tighter regulations under the GDPR.

The ladies event, Marloes Brans and Marry de Gaay Fortman’s successful initiative, is going international this year. On 2 October, it will be organised simultaneously at all Houthoff offices around the world.

Happy reading!

Michiel Pannekoek
Member of the Board & Chief International Officer

A new generation is ready to join the Houthoff family

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