Food is a hot topic. Is there enough of it? Is it safe? Is it produced fairly and sensibly? And where? It seems that food is being discussed today like never before. Located in the middle of Food Valley, Schuiteman Accountants & Adviseurs are literally and figuratively at the heart of the debate.

Good story
The consumer plays the leading role in the Dutch food sector. Convenience, enjoyment, healthy and cheap are key words and preferably there’s a good story to sell too. The conscious consumer presents businesses with new challenges; their production, presentation and business operations must keep pace with today’s consumer.

“As well as challenges there are plenty of opportunities,” says Jorrit Koops, partner at Schuiteman Accountants & Adviseurs. “Businesses that are able to capitalise on new developments in the area of, say, home deliveries, online purchasing and corporate social responsibility can penetrate new and existing market segments and perhaps also profit from the internationally leading position occupied by the Netherlands, and especially Food Valley, in the international market.”

“Food Valley offers a cluster of knowledge, entrepreneurship and innovation in the field of food,” continues Koops. “In this way the region provides a hotbed for national and international growth. An exciting collaboration has developed between government, knowledge institutions and trade and industry in order to address the issues surrounding food.”
In this dynamic, Schuiteman is a facilitating player. “As well as providing reliable annual accounts and audits, we can help businesses make effective use of tax facilities and subsidies and can advise on financing issues, which in an explorative market like food arise often and take many forms,” says Koops.

Sounding boards
In order to be able to offer professional expertise, Schuiteman is involved in various sounding board groups in the region. “In this way we aim to assist mainly larger businesses, but also small companies, to, say, upscale and thus also to strengthen the region’s position.”

In the food sector Schuiteman serves mainly (larger) SME companies. As well as providing standard accountancy services, Schuiteman advises companies in the areas of innovation, fiscal opportunities, incentive measures and corporate social responsibility. Using a prognosis tool, Schuiteman also has a usable instrument for planning over the medium term.


Consumer demand is an issue of growing importance in the agricultural sector. The consumer wants to know what’s on her plate; where did it come from, how was it produced?. In addition, sustainability, public health, landscape use and animal welfare are playing an ever growing role in (intensive) cattle farming.

Cost-price management
“At enterprise level profitability, cost-price management and legislation continue to be important themes,” says agricultural business advisor Klaas Bouwman of Schuiteman. “In cattle farming too a significant part of the business operation is bounded by Dutch and European legislation. And because yield prices are set by third parties, cost-price management is of primary importance to many business owners in this sector.”

“This is a difficult and restricted playing field on which the players are growing in size and falling in number,” continues Bouwman.

Phosphate rights
Increases in population and prosperity will continue to help push up demand for dairy in Asia, the Middle East, Latin America and North Africa in the coming years. This demand must be dealt with but at the same time there are considerable challenges relating to minerals, pasture grazing, ammonia and greenhouse gases. “European legislation concerning phosphate rights is a source of considerable uncertainty for dairy farmers,” says Bouwman. “Not knowing whether to plan for the implementation or postponement of these pieces of legislation makes long-term planning difficult, whereas that is so vitally important in a sector like this one.”

Sector knowledge
The only solution, Bouwman believes is this: stay up to date. “Our team brings a wealth of experience and sector knowledge. This enables us to support our clients and we aim to respond as accurately and properly as possible to the changes in the sector.”

Schuiteman Accountants & Adviseurs serves many clients who are engaged in dairy farming, the poultry industry and goat, pig and veal calf farming. And companies related to agro, such as suppliers of livestock housing equipment, product processors, packing stations and brokers of production rights.

Sources: Rabobank, ABN Amro Insights

Transport and Logistics

It seems as if the only aspect that has counted in recent years in the transport and logistics sector is price. “Competition is strong,” confirms partner Henk Morren at Schuiteman. “And the last euro is extremely important, but anyone who can distinguish themselves on the basis of service and quality can largely remove themselves from the price war.”

“Today that quality is measured by such things as transparency, information, density, punctuality and specialism,” says Morren. “Customers find it increasingly important to know exactly how the physical flow of goods is structured and which link is being activated when. They also crave an ever denser distribution network.”

Such developments, together with growing price pressure, have created a split in the market between ever-growing companies, capable of specialist services (such as cooled transport) and small do-it-all companies, which have little chance of escaping the price competition. “In both categories it is vital to safeguard the quality element and to choose the right mix between low cost price and high quality; for example in the decision whether to use foreign drivers. Whereas the one customer finds it important to be able to communicate well with drivers about load and delivery, in another case it may be less relevant.”

An inevitable trend, yet one that is difficult to predict, is the rise of robotisation. Certainly in logistics, the rise is unprecedented. Experts envisage that robots in the Eurozone may cost up to 1.5 million jobs. Major savings are to be made with the use of drones and robots, partly because the production costs of robots are decreasing.

Sustainability and efficiency are other important trends in the transport and logistics sector. “Manufacturers are investing in energy-efficient trucks. These are increasingly appealing from an environmental perspective, as well as in terms of cost. In addition drivers are more often trained to achieve maximum return with minimum consumption,” says Morren.

In the transport and logistics sector Schuiteman has a strong presence in and around the Veluwe region, where many transport companies are based. “That enables us in terms of benchmarking to provide our clients with a lot of useful input,” says Morren. “The cost price comprises so many elements; from fuel and staff to the maintenance per kilometre and insurances. As accountants we can shed light on the price structure. What is your driving style? What performance is being achieved in terms of tyre maintenance? Is there room for improvement?”


If you govern an association or foundation, there are a fair number of matters that have to be taken into account. And sometimes tax matters are forgotten. Clearly, this carries a risk. As the director, you may be held personally liable for unpaid taxes. Not something you want to happen. What should you look out for?

The fiscally beneficial status of a “Public Benefit Organisation” (Dutch: Algemeen Nut Beogende Instelling, ANBI) is not easily acquired. The institution has to work hard for it. It helps to get off to a good start, and we can help you do that. Once ANBI status has been obtained, there is still more to do. Because the ANBI must fulfil a continuous stream of formal and material requirements. The Tax and Customs Administration checks this carefully. Even minor errors in the articles of association and neglecting to publish on time the organisation’s details on the website, can cost you the ANBI status and the many benefits it carries.

Associations and foundations often work with volunteers. You are also liable for them. And, of course, volunteers have rights too. If you want to reward your volunteers, that can be done in a tax-efficient way. Naturally, rules apply.

And much more
As well as the above-mentioned, there are of course many more matters that as an association or foundation you have to take into account. Think of the exemption from energy tax and the possible duty to pay VAT on fundraising revenue. But think too of the statutory requirements pertaining to the annual accounts. And with the new qualification system for public benefit organisations, your organisation will demonstrate that it is in control and transparent. This will have good repercussions for the size and frequency of donations.

In short, associations and foundations have something ‘soft’ about them. But the legal and tax reality is hard. This means the areas to which you need to pay attention may be more numerous than you think. We can help you take stock of risks and limit them, and to take advantage of opportunities in the broad legal playing field.


The automotive sector has clearly left the crisis years behind it, but the market remains volatile and highly competitive. Upscaling is an ongoing trend, as are smart and sustainable mobility solutions.

The car is still a very popular means of transport in the Netherlands; every year we drive our way through some twelve billion litres of fuel. Private individuals are now more often prepared to purchase a new car. Vans, too, are highly popular, although this market is highly competitive. The market for lease and second-hand cars remains reasonably stable, but the aftersales market is depressed. To keep their heads above water in this market, many companies will have to change their business model.

Car use too has changed. The frequency with which an individual vehicle is used is increasing and more often now car drivers undertake journeys involving different modes of transport. Car drivers are also paying increasing attention to price and consumption costs.

Car manufacturers are under pressure to develop their cars to be as energy-efficient and environmentally friendly as possible. Whereas in recent years (semi-)electric cars made huge gains in popularity in the Netherlands, today the market for electric vehicles seems to be collapsing. The operating radius of electric vehicles is an issue that still needs to be addressed and bearing this in mind the purchase price is still considerable. The changes in legislation relating to additional tax liability add to the reluctance to embrace sustainable driving. Fully electric vehicles are expected to break through in the long term, a prospect that seems less likely for hybrid vehicles.

Sounding boards
Schuiteman Accountants & Adviseurs is strongly represented in the automobile sector in the Mid-Netherlands. This enables Schuiteman to carry out good benchmarking in this sector and provide clients with valuable information about their performance. “We like to participate in the thinking process with these companies and are also able to connect up various information flows,” says accountant Jorrit Koops of Schuiteman. “Our clients know that and are used to discussing a varied range of issues with us. One of them could give me a telephone call at any time, keen to discuss a quote for an automatisation solution. Our interconnectedness with the sector means that we are also able and keen to participate in the thinking process at that level.”

As its clients include various large dealerships, Schuiteman has relevant comparative material against which parties can measure themselves.

Sources: Rabobank Cijfers & Trends, ING

Real estate

The real estate sector is back on track. While overcapacity remains a serious issue, the economic recovery is having a positive impact, exports are growing and investments rising. Above all: the crisis has had a purifying effect. The real estate sector is more self-aware and innovative than it has been in years.

“Building has resumed,” says Evert Hein Schuiteman of Schuiteman Accountants & Adviseurs. “In particular, house building, commercial construction and utility construction are doing well.”

Schuiteman is observing a number of significant trends. “Sustainability is out of its infancy in real estate. Progress was less rapid in the crisis period, due to the relatively high investment involved in sustainable development. But the trend did continue and now that the sector is picking up, sustainability is evident in all fields. The building sector has long been accused of not being innovative; those days are really gone. It has caught up in a big way.”

Lifetime of real estate
Another development observed by Schuiteman is the discussion about the lifetime of real estate. “It is realistic to expect that population growth will stagnate in the coming decades and it may even decline between 2030 and 2035. In view of that, is it sensible to build homes with an economic life of fifty years? Or should we instead aim for homes that can be taken apart after 20 or 25 years?” Schuiteman is referring to modular homes, which can be given another function and reused.

Flexible employment
A third trend is the flexible organisation of businesses. “Certainly in the real estate sector much employment became more flexible in the crisis period. Permanent contracts gave way to flexible employment arrangements. These suited many companies and they are keen to maintain them in better economic times.” Schuiteman adds its own thoughts to the client’s. “We provide ideas and starting points for addressing the issue of how you can remain a flexible organisation and how you can prevent fixed cost patterns arising that are later difficult to escape.”

Schuiteman Accountants & Adviseurs serves a wide variety of parties in the real estate sector. From project developers, architects and construction firms to installers, investors and end-users. As well as the usual accountancy services, Schuiteman provides advice on diverse subjects in the sector, ranging from financing issues to tax consultancy.


Tourism is an important sector of our economy. Over the past ten years this sector has expanded more rapidly than the Dutch economy as a whole, and it provides employment for more than 600,000 people.

Nonetheless, companies keen to establish themselves in the tourism and recreation business face many challenges: the impact of the internet continues unabated, which is changing consumer patterns and causing the proliferation of consumer-to-consumer platforms such as Airbnb. In addition, the market for holiday homes has become saturated in recent years and heightened (price) competition has arisen.

That is hardly surprising; the Dutch like their recreation. No less that 99 per cent of the population likes to undertake at least one leisure activity outdoors every year; in total that means some 3.75 billion trips representing a value of 50 billion euros. “This makes the recreation sector interesting and potentially lucrative,” says accountant Robert Berger of Schuiteman.

The way in which we spend our recreation time is changing. A holiday within Dutch borders ranks more often among the serious options and there is a hunger for unique and authentic destinations and locations. “Exclusivity is coveted,” says Berger. “So if you want to stand out among the wide range of options available online, the key is to present an exclusive concept. This could take many forms: by offering a magnificent location in pristine nature, or by taking a particular approach, such as offering Christian camping sites or specialising in luxury and comfort, which might suggest glamping facilities.”

Ever later reservations
“Whereas in the past holidays were booked months in advance, these days customers are booking later and later,” continues Berger. “More often last-minute and almost exclusively online.” It goes without saying that in this scenario it is vital that you are easy to find online. “And, if you can build customer loyalty outside the familiar reservation channels, you can maintain your margins, because you can keep the reservation fees low.”

Schuiteman Accountants & Adviseurs provides its services in the recreation sector mainly to larger recreation parks and recreation providers, with a concentration in the Veluwe region. This enables Schuiteman to provide proper and accurate benchmarking and to advise on price, costs and (long-term) investments, tax matters and the transfer of business ownership. Schuiteman greatly values the continuous development of knowledge and expertise and this is one reason why Schuiteman is a member of RECRON, the Association for Recreation Business Owners in the Netherlands (Dutch: Vereniging van Recreatieondernemers Nederland).


Digital trends colour today’s economic landscape. And in hospitality that is certainly true. But it is precisely in these digital times that experience turns a customer into a satisfied customer. “A well-considered combination of hospitality and quality makes all the difference,” says accountant Henry Schut of Schuiteman.

Winning customer loyalty
Today’s digital options for facilities services are essential in enabling businesses to focus on that quality and hospitality. “The automation of staff administration and payments (via WhatsApp or MyOrder), as well as social media opportunities to build customer loyalty are giving hospitality businesses new instruments for strengthening their business position and saving costs. Loyalty programmes, for example, are currently making inroads in the Netherlands.”

“Schuiteman Accountants can play a valuable role here,” says Schut. “We shoulder the burden for our clients when it comes to financial products. Doing that well relies on knowing what is going on. So that is what we aim to do.” Benchmarking is an important part of that. “We have a good impression of the performance of hospitality businesses, certainly in our region. Supported by this information we can advise right down to the details. Are you generating enough turnover with your hall rental? Is it wise to invest in new overhead projectors or audio sets, and will that enable you to reach new customers?”

Another significant trend in the sector is the increasing demand for ‘fairly’ and sustainably produced food. More and more customers value responsible production. Today’s consumer is especially interested in energy-neutral production and efforts to reduce food wastage.

“Aware visitors require aware business owners,” says Schut. “In this sector you can’t afford to stand still.” Business owners benefit from a sound long-term strategy, but one that offers the leeway to change course quickly and effectively. “In that respect, Schuiteman is happy to act as a sounding board and lookout.”

With seven offices and some 130 employees, Schuiteman Accountants is strongly represented in the Mid-Netherlands. In the hospitality field, Schuiteman’s specialists mainly assist companies ranging in size from small to medium-sized.


The business services sector in the Netherlands is back on its feet. Growth stagnated in 2013, but today a tentative upward trend is evident. This is due in part to the ever better and more effective application of ICT, which is creating lower costs, greater flexibility and better service provision.

Business services is a big sector in the Netherlands; the sector represents more than one-fifth of the economy. Expectations are that this share will only increase. Not that every sector can benefit from this, however. “The diversity within the sector is great, and so the turnover prospects vary greatly from subsector to subsector,” says accountant Jorrit Koops of Schuiteman. The temporary staff sector is performing well because it can profit from an increased level of activity in various subsectors, as well as a long-term shift to flexible employment.

Agile and flexible
“The flexibilisation of the employment market, the rise of robotisation and automatisation and the sector’s internationalisation are having a great impact across the board,” says Koops. “The developments are so great that it is difficult to look far ahead. To nonetheless respond properly to the volatility, you would be well advised to make your business agile and flexible,” says Koops.

Product to service
Another important development in the sector is the shift from products to services. “Increasingly, even physical products are being offered as a service. This is interesting for providers and purchasers. For providers it generally involves increased profit; for purchasers it offers flexibility and more effective product use.”
According to Koops, in transitions like these, it is extremely important not to lose sight of the client. “On each occasion you have to ask yourself the question: how should I offer my services? How can I ensure I include the right steps in my services concept and that my client understands my concept. You have to keep on asking these questions.”

In the business services sector Schuiteman Accountants & Adviseurs serves primarily civil law notaries, law firms, IT companies and consultancies.

Sources: Rabobank, ING

Family business

In comparison with listed companies, family businesses are often more profitable and more resilient. Moreover, they often provide more employment. On the other hand, family businesses are also vulnerable. For example, where the relationship between the company and its shareholders or stakeholders is concerned. In addition, tension can arise between the generation of income and the retention of the capital and assets. And we haven’t yet mentioned the issue of continuity; the transfer of the organisation to the next generation can involve enough tension of its own.

Schuiteman knows this, because we ourselves were originally a family business. We are familiar with the challenges you face, but thanks to years of experience we can also offer the right solutions. Good agreements, for example, are important. You can record these agreements in a family charter. We would be happy to tell you the exact procedure and the benefits.