Just in a little while and De Buurtboer has a party to celebrate. The company is then 12.5 years old. But there is more reason to rejoice, because after two difficult years, the offices are finally being filled up again. And that is what De Buurtboer’s business model is based on. For many readers of MT / Sprout, the company is no longer unknown. Buurtboer was previously named Challenger, the list of fifty most challenging, innovative and fast-growing startups and scaleups in our country.
The algorithm does the job
But still, who missed it, let’s make it clear what the company is actually doing. Co-founder Caroline van der Lande explains: “We deliver a fresh lunch to companies, often with craft products from small suppliers. It is a healthy alternative to canteen and standard supermarket products. We also take all research from your hands. Everyone who orders food from Albert Heijn has to fill out an entire list every time we have an algorithm for that. This ensures that a varied lunch is served that meets all your wishes. ”
An office manager only needs to fill in the preferences once. Meat or no meat, for example how many days you want a salad and when to add something hot. “Based on that input, we serve the company a wonderful lunch. Surprising, varied and healthy, “says Van der Lande.
The corona crisis is cutting in
Back to March 2020. De Buurtboer has continued to grow recently and also expects new growth for this year. There does not seem to be a cloud in the sky until … “The press conference on March 12 changed everything for us. People started working from home en masse, and the number of customers dropped from 250 to – literally – zero. It took a while. ” The Buurtboer make in the months after a series of pivots in record time. Businesses can order a lunch digitally for their employees who work from home, an online supermarket with healthy products is being set up and De Buurtboer even does fulfillment tasks for webshops. “After all, we had two production offices that were closed down. That way we could make up for some of the lost revenue. ”
Neighbor farmer greets new customers
Van der Lande was therefore very pleased with the announcement made by Minister Ernst Kuipers on 15 March. After two years, the Homework Council finally expired. Now De Buurtboer can once again fully focus on growth. The company now serves 150 companies, which enjoy a healthy lunch daily or a few times a week. “We still notice that there are fewer in the office. At the same time, we also see new customers for whom the joint lunch has become even more relevant. It’s a good time to meet with colleagues, forge ties and exchange ideas. ”
In addition, Van der Lande now also addresses companies that were previously affiliated with a large catering company. “If there are fewer people in the office, it is no longer necessary to have your own canteen. The Buurtboer are also a good alternative for that group. You are flexible and offer employees much more quality than an average supermarket lunch. ”
Do one thing super well
The Buurtboers have now said goodbye to the activities of the domestic workers. It fits with the entrepreneurial philosophy that Van der Lande and her partner Nikki Wiesman have: It’s better to do one thing super well than two things half-heartedly. “Over the last 12.5 years, we have learned that focus has been one of the most important success factors for our concept, and we are happy to stick to that,” says Van der Lande. In addition, the duo always chose not to continue to do everything themselves. For many ambitious entrepreneurs, this is simply a pitfall. “We hired our first employee after a month, who was to lead the operation three years later. You can only grow if you are able to outsource things. ”
Neighbor farmer continues to grow
After almost 12.5 years, that will soon change for Van der Lande and Wiesman. The Buurtboer have been sold to Albron, which means it’s time to take a step back too. “I believe in this battle and I see a great future ahead for De Buurtboer. With all the loyal employees, committed suppliers and loyal customers, Buurtboer will only continue to grow in the coming period.”
De Buurtboer has an offer especially for readers of MT / Sprout. Your company can get acquainted with the healthy, varied lunches from Buurtboer for a week and that with a 50 percent discount. Doesn’t that sound good?