Business Leaders to Attend GES 2019

Many well-known Dutch business leaders, politicians, academics and researchers will be taking part in GES 2019. Key names like Philips CEO Frans van Houten, Shell Netherlands CEO Marjan van Loon, DSM CEO Feike Sijbesma, ABP Pension Fund chair Corien Wortmann-Kool, TomTom co-founder Corinne Vigreux, and Prince Constantijn, the ambassador of StartupDelta, have already confirmed their attendance.

Corinne Vigreux

Corinne Vigreux, Co-Founder TomTom / Founder CODAM Coding College

‘Companies have a key role’

All of them will have a chance to set forth their views in various sessions. ‘Companies have a key role in addressing global issues,’ said Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation Sigrid Kaag. ‘This is why it’s so beneficial to bring together major figures from the business community, other entrepreneurs, investors and government representatives at this GES.’ The entrepreneurial summit will center on innovative and promising ideas and projects from 1,200 specially selected ‘next generation entrepreneurs.’ The complete list of Dutch speakers appears below this news article.


GES2019 is a collaborative venture between the Netherlands and the United States. This year’s co-hosts are Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte and U.S. Secretary of State Michael Pompeo. Ms Kaag is the chair of the conference. Four other members of government will also be in attendance at the World Forum: Carola Schouten (Minister of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality), Cora van Nieuwenhuizen (Minister of Infrastructure and Water Management), Bruno Bruins (Minister for Healthcare and Sport), Mona Keijzer (State Secretary for Economic Affairs and Climate Policy) and Stientje van Veldhoven (State Secretary for Infrastructure and Water Management).

Opening speech by Queen Máxima

All these members of government are closely involved in the summit’s organization. As a member of the Netherlands Committee for Enterprise and the UN Secretary-General’s Special Advocate for Inclusive Finance for Development, Queen Máxima will deliver the opening speech at the GES.

Prominent members from the U.S.

For its part the U.S. side will soon be announcing what prominent members of the American business community will be coming to The Hague. It has already been confirmed that Vice Chairman Philipp Hildebrand of BlackRock, the world’s largest wealth management corporation, and Anne Finucane, the Vice Chair of Bank of America, will be among the speakers. Another major investor who will be attending is Marcelo Claure, COO of the SoftBank Group.

List of speakers from the Netherlands

  • Her Majesty Queen Máxima of the Netherlands, UN Secretary-General’s Special Advocate for Inclusive Finance for Development (UNSGSA)


  • Mark Rutte, Prime Minister, Minister of General Affairs of the Netherlands (GES 2019 co-host)
  • Sigrid Kaag, Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation (GES 2019 chair)
  • Carola Schouten, Deputy Prime Minister of the Netherlands, Minister of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality
  • Cora van Nieuwenhuizen, Minister of Infrastructure and Water Management
  • Bruno Bruins, Minister for Healthcare and Sport
  • Mona Keijzer, State Secretary for Economic Affairs and Climate Policy
  • Stientje van Veldhoven, State Secretary for Infrastructure and Water Management

Agri-FoodConnectivityEnergyHealth, Water, Access to Finance, Industries of the Future

  • HRH Prince Constantijn of Orange-Nassau (Special Envoy for StartupDelta)
  • Feike Sijbesma (CEO and Chairman, Royal DSM)
  • Frans van Houten (CEO, Royal Philips)
  • Marjan van Loon (CEO,ShellNetherlands)
  • Corinne Vigreux (Co-Founder, TomTom / Founder CODAM Coding College)
  • Corien Wortmann-Kool ( Chair of the Board, ABP Pension Fund
  • Professor Louise Fresco (President of the Executive Board, Wageningen University & Research)
  • Ronald Wuijster (Chair of the Board, APG Asset Management)
  • Volkert Doeksen (Vice Chair, CarlyleSolutions Group; Former CEO, AlpInvest)
  • Kees Koolen (Chair & CEO, Koolen Industries / Super B; Former CEO of
  • Vivienne van Eijkelenborg (CEO, Difrax; Regional Chair, Europe Entrepreneurs Organization)
  • Yousef Yousef (LG Sonic Algae Control Systems)
  • Marleen Evertsz CEO, Nxchange)
  • Carolien Nijhuis (Managing Director, Internet of Things, KPN) 
  • Dr André Faaij (Director of Science, Energy Research Centre of the Netherlands / TNO)
  • Jeroen Weurding, (Country Manager Benelux, Swiss Re Corporate Solutions)
  • Therese Noorlander (Sustainability Director Europe, the Coca-Cola Company)
  • Peter Hendriks (Managing Director, Hoogendoorn
  • Vincent Kwaks (CTO, Vanderlande Industries)
  • Nico Anten (Executive Chairman, Connekt)
  • Bianca Nijhof, Director Netherlands Water Partnership
  • Joyce Bliek (Director, Digital Business Solutions for the Port of Rotterdam)
  • Rem Koolhaas (Architect and Founder, OMA)
  • Simone Brummelhuis (Investor and Board Advisor, Schiphol, TMG, Borski)
  • Heleen Dura-van Oord (Founding Partner, Peak Capital)
  • Ineke Dezentjé Hamming-Bluemink (Chair, FME)
  • Henk Ovink (The Netherlands’ Special Envoy for International Water Affairs)
  • Nadine Slootjes (Manager, Operational Water Management & Early Warning, Deltares)
  • Roel Messie (Chief Investment Officer, Sustainable Trade Initiative)
  • Anne Dubost (Senior Global Lead Logistics & Sustainability, Heineken)
  • Rob Goossens (CEO, Smart Industry Fieldlab ‘Technologies Added’) 
  • Joost Sandberg (Business Development Manager, Nouryon)