For the third year in a row, Innovation Origins has organised the annual Expat Top-10. Over the past years, Eindhoven has welcomed thousands of internationals, many of whom have done a great job for the city. Through this top-10 we say Thank You to all of them. This year’s theme of the Top-10 is ‘Jobs and Entrepreneurship’. Every day we offer you an interview with one of the winners. In this interview, you can read about how they ended up in Eindhoven, what they are doing in and for the city, and how they get around in their new community. Today: Betsy Lindsey. Here’s the whole series.
“I feel a little like a traffic cop”
In Eindhoven since: 2011
Country of origin: United States
Do you speak Dutch with the people in your neighbourhood? Zeker! (Yes!) I even text on the BuurtApp, the neighborhood group on WhatsApp.
What was the reason for you to move to Eindhoven?
“I ‘married in’. My husband and I met in Seattle, we moved to Hong Kong first, but then found life there too busy to raise a family. So, we moved to the Netherlands to take part in a ‘work/life balance’ economy!”
What makes Eindhoven an attractive place to live and work in?
“It’s just enough of a city. I like that I can get out to nature quickly. I live near the outer ring.”
What should Eindhoven do to make itself a better place to live and work in, especially for expats?
“I think the City has made a significant effort to help folks integrate. I participated in the “Vrouwen voor Vrouwen or Women for Women” project as a mentor to new female expats to help them integrate.”
Tech companies in and around Eindhoven have a huge shortage of employees. What could they do to attract more technicians from your country of origin?
“Perhaps, the city could facilitate more temporary and affordable housing for folks coming into the country for the first time? And, make rental housing easier to find!”
How would you describe your role within the Eindhoven community?
“Even though I am relatively new in town, I feel like my job is to continually connect folks in our high tech ecosystem. I feel a little like a traffic cop, giving directions to Dutch folks and internationals of where to go for help. I know folks from every sector: the University, the High Tech Campus, the startups, and the city government. I would like to think I can keep us all moving forward.”
What is it like to start your business in Eindhoven?
“I don’t own my own business, but at HighTechXL, the hardware accelerator that I work for at the HighTech Campus, we actively help companies incorporate. I think registering your business is the least of your worries. There is plenty of advice from the established business ecosystem for budding startup, but getting a bank account for non-EU companies can be like pulling teeth. If you are interested in starting a hardware startup, feel free to contact HighTechXL!”
What is the worst and the best thing about Eindhoven?
“Probably, the worst thing is the connection to the Düsseldorf Airport. Better public transport options that don’t involve a Sprinter train might make it easier to depart to international destinations.”
Photo (c) Israel Nunez-Hernandez