Starting this week, Bits&Chips will be published exclusively in English. That’s only a few months before the magazine will be celebrating its twentieth anniversary. We wrote in Dutch for quite some time, but from now on it will be 100 percent English. Although our target audience is traditionally based in the Netherlands and Belgium, the technological developments in these countries and the success of their high tech industry justify Bits&Chips reaching out to an international audience.
The change from Dutch to English is driven by two major trends. The first being a large influx of expats that have flocked to Belgium and the Netherlands thanks to the global success of their high tech companies and research institutes. For example, the High Tech Campus in Eindhoven (former location of Philips Research) hosts nearly 160 active high tech companies. Of the 11,000 workers in R&D, nearly one third do not speak Dutch. In all, more than sixty nationalities are now studying or working in the Netherlands in the field of high-tech systems and materials, proving just how attractive the industry has become.
The second trend is that of Belgian and Dutch high tech companies becoming more export driven. Our OEMs, their suppliers and a bunch of start-ups not only seek but also need a worldwide market for their niche products and services. Bits&Chips is seeking to capture a diverse and international audience for them.
Our advertisers and readers have welcomed this new strategy, and our customers, both past and present, expressed their desire to move to an international platform. They want Bits&Chips to continue to underscore the strength of the region’s high tech industry, but in a language the whole world understands. We will continue to primarily cover the key markets in Belgium and the Netherlands in the areas of printing, medical and semiconductors with a technical focus on software engineering, RF technology, semicon equipment, and system architecture.
Don’t expect our English to be perfect right from the start. We hope to add native editors to our team soon, so we can promote our successful Benelux high tech ecosystem with style and dignity on a worldwide stage.