Speech Egbert Vuursteen & Rob Wagenborg

Cover story: Delfsail 2016

Good evening ladies and gentlemen, dear colleagues,

This evening, we’re celebrating what we’ve all achieved together. Although the transport sector is still facing adverse economic conditions, we’re confident about the future. That’s because we believe in our company policies that will guide us through these economically difficult times. 

For more than a century, Royal Wagenborg has been a provider of logistics services with a solution for every logistical problem. Because we’ve constantly improved and expanded our services, we’ve become an international player – as is clear from the many different nationalities represented here this weekend.

Egbert Vuursteen: “We’re very happy to be here with you this evening. After all, it’s a long time since we were here together, in better economic times. You’ll remember the celebrations in 2009, of course, with the launch of the Beatrix by our former Queen. It’s good to see that many of you who were here back then are still with us today. That shows how we go in for long-term relationships, at a time when short-term employment has become quite normal. To the colleagues who’ve been with us less long, I’d like to express the hope that you’ll stay with Wagenborg for a long time.

I’d like to extend an especially warm welcome to those of you have made the long journey from Azerbaijan, Belarus, Canada, China, Indonesia, Israel, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Oman, the Philippines, Russia, Singapore, the United Arab Emirates, the US, and Vietnam. We also welcome our guests from Austria, Belgium, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Egypt, Estonia, Finland, France, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Luxembourg, Monaco, Morocco, the Netherlands, the Netherlands Antilles, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Turkey, Sweden, Switzerland, and Ukraine. And last but not least our guests from the United Kingdom. Regardless of whether you’re inside or outside the European Union, for us you will remain an important partner, and we appreciate your being here this evening.

Our great-grandfather, Egbert Wagenborg, started in 1888 on a wooden sea-going vessel called a “tjalk”. Ten years later, in 1898, he laid the foundation for the present firm. We are still a family company, and we’re proud that we’ve been able to maintain his way of working, even in difficult times. Egbert Wagenborg was the founder of a special blend of client focus, a solutions-driven approach, lasting relationships, good employment practice, teamwork and also – being enterprising!"



“To the colleagues who’ve been with us less long, I’d like to express the hope that you’ll stay with Wagenborg for a long time.”

Rob Wagenborg continued: “That special combination of qualities is at the heart of the company. We’re aware that that approach has brought us to where we are now and will also guide us into the future. At the same time, the challenging market conditions require us to be flexible and to constantly reinvent ourselves so as to keep up with the changing world of today. To remain successful in the longer term, we need our positive spirit, creative use of opportunities, innovation and cost-awareness, all combined with safe working practices and leaving only the smallest possible environmental footprint. 

To achieve all that, we need to work together. Our success is determined by how we deal with one another every day and with our clients and other stakeholders. We believe in commitment. Having a high level of commitment means that you’re willing to make a bit more effort than your competitors because your work, your colleagues, your clients, and your organisation make you proud and happy, and they energise you. Being highly committed doesn’t just make you feel good yourself, it also greatly improves the performance of Wagenborg as a whole. 

Solving problems, acting quickly, taking responsible risks, being flexible – they’re what we like, what we do, and what make us successful. And we have to keep it up! At the same time, we’ve now grown into a big, mature organisation which also requires disciplined and carefully considered action.

Our focus on maritime and oil and gas-focused logistics, in particular, has led to part of Wagenborg Nedlift being transferred to Lubbers. That means that some of our colleagues will be working outside our organisation. We want to thank those colleagues for their years of positive commitment and wish everyone a prosperous future.”


Egbert Vuursteen concluded: “The last DelfSail was in 2009, at around the start of the economic crisis. We all know the familiar biblical story of the seven lean years and the seven years of plenty. We hope that DelfSail 2016 will be the turning point towards an economically better and calmer world.

Finally, we’d like to thank you all for your commitment and wish you a very enjoyable evening".


“Finally, we’d like to thank you all for your commitment and wish you a very enjoyable evening.”