Advantages of doing business in Gelderland

Our local economy is booming. That fact alone makes our area a worthwhile option to consider. Add to that its location, however, and any doubts you might have will be dispelled. Our working population is highly educated and generally professionals have an excellent command of the English language. Whatever it is you're looking for as an entrepreneur, you'll find it here. Connection and creation That's what we're about. And that's why we provide you with a platform that will help you find your way in our area and will allow you continuous growth. You're invited!

River: 'De Waal'

River: 'De Waal'

Strategic location in the Netherlands

The Arnhem – Nijmegen – Foodvalley area is situated in the northwest of Europe in between the three significant urban areas and commercial hot spots. We're also just an hour away from Europe's biggest harbour: the port of Rotterdam. This means that we've direct access to many significant European and global businesses as well as to extensive sales markets.

As we are at the heart of one of the most urbanised areas in the world, the accessibility by road, rail, and water, in combination with the proximity to airports, is excellent.

A few important transport options in and near our area:

  • There's a super-fast ICE train connection that runs from Amsterdam to Arnhem to Frankfurt and vice versa; enjoy swift access to the country's capital as well as to one of Germany's largest metropolises. Amsterdam – Frankfurt takes just under four hours, Amsterdam – Arnhem approximately an hour.
  • The extensive railway network connects Rotterdam to the Ruhr area in Germany; an easy journey from one industrial area to another! Rotterdam to Duisburg takes approximately two and a half hours.
  • The Betuweroute is an extensive double-track freight railway that allows for goods to be transported to and from Germany. 80% of all freight trains from Rotterdam to Germany take this route. It allows for speedy and effective goods transport while circumventing the heavy Dutch road traffic.
  • There are three intercontinental and eight international airports that you can reach within two hours of travel. Check out the paragraph below to find out more.
  • As is made clear by the existence of the Betuweroute, our proximity to Germany allows for excellent export options.
  • There is also a container terminal in Nijmegen: BCTN’s Inland Terminal Nijmegen is one of the major players in the field of intermodal container transport in the Netherlands and due to its favourable location along the River Waal, near the Maas-Waal canal and the encircling A50 and A73 motorways, the terminal has direct links to Rotterdam and the German hinterland via waterways.


Several important airports are located in close proximity to our area, allowing you all the mobility you might need for your business journeys:

  • Schiphol Airport, the largest international airport of the Netherlands is approximately 75 minutes away by car and train. Trains stop directly below the departures/arrivals hall.
  • The German international airport of Düsseldorf is also approximately 75 minutes away. It is smaller than Schiphol, but still offers flight to over 100 destinations.
  • Dortmund Airport is a minor international airport that is mainly used for low-cost and leisure charter flights. It is approximately 90 minutes away.
  • Eindhoven looks a lot smaller than Schiphol, but it's actually the country's second largest airport when it comes to number of passengers. If your destination is covered by the airport, it will save you a lot of time at the airport as the distances to the airports are noticeably short. It's approximately 60 minutes away from our area.
  • Brussels Airport is a bit further away but can at times offer a cheaper alternative for flights. It's about 120 minutes away.
  • Weeze Airport is tiny but is used by a lot of low-cost carriers and it's very close to us. It's only 33 kilometres from Nijmegen, so it's ideal for a quick, cheap journey.

Highly educated workforce

Another important factor: this is the place where bright minds gather. With two top research universities, seven universities of applied sciences and the Expat Center Foodvalley, the area is a hotbed for (international) talent. The staff and student populations of these institutions boast over 115 nationalities. In other words: our region allows you access to a smart, adaptive workforce that is used to innovative ideas and solutions. 


Apart from being highly educated, multicultural, and well grounded, nearly everyone in our area is at least bilingual (or even polyglottal). Our close proximity to Germany means that a lot of people speak passable German and are used to interacting with German businesses and partners. English is the lingua franca nearly everywhere in the world, but there are only a few places where it is spoken as well as in the Netherlands. In many of the university courses, being able to understand and speak English is a vital prerequisite. This means that if you are coming to the Arnhem – Nijmegen – Wageningen area, you will have no problems connecting to possible collaborators, contractors, employers, or employees. If you do want to take that extra step to imbed yourself by learning the language, there are countless educational institutes that offer effective Dutch language courses. In our border region, language will not be a barrier!

Green Metropolitan Region

With its proximity to the German border, the Arnhem – Nijmegen – Wageningen area is the opposite of de Randstad. The main difference is its living climate. The area is rural and spacious, a lot less densely populated and there’s always at least one of its villages being nominated for the title of greenest village in Europe. Gelderland counts just over two million inhabitants and real estate prices are significantly lower.

Entrepreneurs in the region

Considering the area's population and economic performance, we are an excellent gateway to the European market. We also house a highly educated and skilled labour force, who all speak perfect English. Whatever you are looking for as an entrepreneur, it's all here.


Founder and CTO of Elestor Wiebrand Kout is not just proud of the big strides Elestor has made in the area of energy storage; he is also proud of their highly international and highly competent team. Clean energy is an attractive proposition to young researchers, which is why it’s not been hard to get the best brains from all over the world on board to develop Elestor’s new flow battery.


As director of KIEMT, Luc Kikkert is passionate about KIEMT’s work as a networking organisation that brings together companies and connects with other networks in order to speed along the energy transition. From its base in Arnhem, the organisation works closely with partners in northern France and Germany, as well as closer to home with the Wageningen University & Research and HAN University of Applied Sciences. Their goal is not just to create a sustainable energy market, but also to help business and organisations thrive while they’re doing so.