top of page



Brexit Uncertainty Drives 78 Projects; Talks with 425 More Companies Ongoing

In internationally challenging times, the Netherlands continues to be a country of choice for foreign companies, with Brexit helping to drive a record-breaking year for foreign direct investment in 2019.

The Netherlands Foreign Investment Agency (NFIA), its regional partners in the Invest in Holland network and the Holland International Distribution Council assisted in the attraction of 397 foreign investment projects worldwide last year, totaling 4.3 billion euros in capital investment and the planned creation of 14,000 direct jobs in their first three years in the Netherlands.

U.S. and Canadian companies like Google, Bloomberg, Discovery, Fujifilm Irvine Scientific, FreshBooks and Rakuten Medical tallied 94 direct investment projects in the Netherlands in 2019, accounting for about one-third of the 268 foreign investment projects that NFIA was directly involved in worldwide. The North American projects generated 4,188 jobs in the Netherlands. Projects involved marketing and sales offices, European headquarters, distribution centers and manufacturing facilities in a range of industries from information technology to life sciences & health.

"North American companies choose to invest in Holland to capitalize on our country's pro- business climate, highly educated and multilingual workforce, world-class infrastructure, innovative culture and quality of life that makes it easy to attract talent," said Henny Jacobs, Executive Director of NFIA Americas. "The Netherlands is the America's best gateway to Western Europe and the UK."

Brexit Uncertainty Remains

Since the Brexit referendum in June 2016, 140 companies have opted for the Netherlands for the necessary EU permits, access to the European market and the ability to attract European talent. Of the 140 companies, 78 made their decision in 2019. Media companies Discovery and Ridley Scott, credit rating agency AMBest and life sciences & health manufacturer Shionogi were among the companies choosing the Netherlands because of Brexit. Together, these companies account for more than 4,200 direct jobs and 375 million euros in investments in the first three years.

The sustained uncertainty from Brexit has resulted in a growing number of companies considering moving to the Netherlands. The NFIA is in discussions with 425 companies considering moving to or expanding in the Netherlands as a result of Brexit. Many companies want to continue doing business on the European market without facing disruption or uncertainty.

According to NFIA Commissioner Jeroen Nijland, "2020 will be an important year for these companies. Much will depend on the specifics of an economic partnership between the UK and the EU. The impact of this will vary from sector to sector and the pressure to reach agreements will be high this year. We see that a lot of companies and investments are waiting for the impact of these new agreements before making a decision. On the other hand, more and more companies are not waiting. They opt for the certainty and security on the European Market that the Netherlands offers instead."

NFIA offers free, confidential assistance to companies looking to establish or expand operations in the Netherlands and has North American offices located in Atlanta, Chicago, New York City, San Francisco and Toronto.

​For more information, visit

bottom of page