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Former Commissioner Neelie Kroes lands job attracting startups to the Netherlands

Loek Essers | Dec. 9, 2014
Proving that there is life after the European Commission even if you are 73 years old, Dutch former Commissioner Neelie Kroes is to take on a role as special envoy for the startup scene in the Netherlands.

In her Commission farewell blog post Kroes said digital issues will remain close to her heart. "You can rest assured I will not be tending the roses in my retirement," she said.

Last month, she already hinted at her new role during a TEDx talk in Amsterdam where she recounted one of her weekly Skype sessions with her 6-year-old granddaughter who lives in San Francisco. The granddaughter asked Kroes what her age was. "And I said, at that time: I'm 72. And she said: 'You are still alive? Well, I can assure you life just started," Kroes told the audience.

According to Kroes, the Netherlands is the gateway to Europe which gives opportunities for startups. There is enough money in Europe to fund startups Kroes said, adding that startups should combine their efforts with those of potential investors to make Amsterdam as important to the tech world as Silicon Valley and other startup hotbeds like London and Dublin around the world.

 

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