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At VBH our mission is to maximise the experience and comfort that technology can provide. We work to expand the horizons of how AV and IT can be applied to enhance the pleasure and utility that our clients get from their yachts, and to merge it seamlessly into their lives. We understand technical systems of this kind can be complex, but we make it our job to ensure that where they interact with the customer they are simple to operate, reliable and enjoyable to use. We call this Living Technology.
Van Berge Henegouwen has focused on integrating technology onboard luxury superyachts for more than 30 years
Van Berge Henegouwen has been in the audio-visual business for over 90 years. The company started out in 1918 as an electronics firm, but its nautical endeavors began in 1963 when it installed the first yacht radio on a project by Royal van Lent at de Kaag. In 1985, the company was reinvented in the form that it has today, specialising exclusively in luxury yacht installations. In 2008, Van Berge Henegouwen joined Imtech Marine and in 2015 was acquired by Pon Holdings and Parcom Capital as part of the takeover of Imtech Marine. VBH is headed by CEO Michiel Haverkorn van Rijsewijk and employs over 150 technology enthusiasts. Based in the Netherlands, VBH headquarters is conveniently located in Amsterdam-Duivendrecht at the Pieter Braaijweg.
The video recorder had to be fitted with an expensive frequency stabiliser to counteract fluctuations in the generator voltage . Installing the equipment brought a whole range of additional challenges regarding noise, heat and space
Just one example of this is how much TV lifts have changed. Back in the 1970s we had CRT TVs – shown in the image along with U-Matic video recorder in the drawer. At the time there was only one brand (Barco) that could accept different TV broadcast systems.
In the thirty plus years since VBH started out in luxury yacht audio-visual systems, the technology has evolved beyond all recognition. In particular the convergence of AV and IT has transformed both the variety of content that is now available, and the range of techniques that we can use to access it. It has also caused a revolution in the ability to store and transmit it in ways that were unimaginable 30 years ago.
At VBH we both benefit from and contribute to the torrent of innovation through which we move, and apply it to create new experiences that are only limited by the imagination of the client. There has never been a better time to be an AV/IT integrator, or to be a yacht owner who enjoys the creative arts on screen while on board his or her vessel.
A modern TV lift: automatic operation, silent and just a few inches deep.
Today’s flat screen TVs use automatic lift systems that move silently and have various swiveling capabilities. Screens can also be suspended from ceilings on track systems. Bespoke concealment solutions are an additional option, allowing TVs to disappear into the ceiling, the sideboard, behind a painting or even into a coffee table.
I have many years of experience in AV/IT that began in 1988 when studying mechanical engineering at the Technical University in Delft and founding my own ICT company. In 1992 I launched one of the first Internet Service Providers in the Netherlands. After selling my business in 1999, I continued my career with the technology multinational Philips, working in various global business leadership roles; launching new businesses in Asia, the US and Europe and turning around mature businesses into next phases of profitable growth. In 2008 I was appointed CEO for Philips Lighting Middle East and Africa.
I am thrilled with the opportunity to lead VBH as of 2015 in its next chapter of sustainable growth, particularly given my passion for high-tech innovations in the areas of entertainment, connectivity and design. I have a strong drive to deliver with the VBH team the best possible customer experience and to personally build long-term relationships. Within VBH we have great potential to accelerate the path of continued success together with our partners.
From a more personal perspective, I live in Nuenen with my wife Eva and three children Julia, Pieter and Pepijn. My hobbies include sailing, travel, cooking, tennis and playing the piano, as well exploring the latest gadgets and new technologies!
I arrived at VBH after more than 25 years spent at Philips in a wide variety of finance and management positions. I really enjoy working here as audio tech has always been a great interest of mine. I like high quality equipment and I have followed the latest trends in AV for years. I don’t have great experience in the luxury yachting sector but I’m more than interested and ready to learn fast.
As an entrepreneurial finance professional that looks beyond the figures I like to get involved in strategic choices and drive change. As a people manager I try to motivate and encourage my team to get the best out of themselves. My primary goal at VBH is to facilitate profitable growth for the company on the basis of solid and well-controlled business processes.
Living Technology for me means how innovative solutions can help to improve an experience in a simple and effective way. An example is the app on my smartphone that turns my espresso machine into a connected product and makes it possible to wake up in the morning to the smell of freshly brewed coffee.
On the personal side, I live in Deurne, Noord-Brabant with my wife, my son of 20, a dog and a cat.
In my free time I enjoy traveling, music, art and food & wine. I also really enjoy driving. My son and I go out together and plan challenging road trips in the mountains. In 2015 I took part in an 8,000 km car rally in Scandinavia.
Before joining VBH I worked in several managerial HR functions in the building materials, chemicals and trading industries, where I gained valuable experience in complex HR Projects and cultural change. Within VBH I have the opportunity to be part of an enthusiastic group of inspired people, working on exciting projects and products, and I am very proud to be working with them.
As a woman I am used to working in ‘a man’s world’ and get inspired by enthusiastic people working to achieve operational excellence and serving their customers to the highest standards. I myself am an energetic customer and a results-orientated, enthusiastic team builder. No-nonsense, analytic, transparent and direct, I like to inspire and challenge the people I work with.
For that reason, I also enjoy coaching my colleagues to help them achieve their personal goals. I focus my energy on recognising, developing and motivating people to the hidden possibilities of the human being. Based on my experience I know that the learning limits of humans is still unknown as I am continually surprised by what people can achieve!
In my spare time I like to do sports; bodycombat and bodypump, skiing and walking my dog.
I studied mechanical engineering with a marketing specialisation at the Hague College. Two years after starting work I joined the marine business at Van Rietschoten & Houwens, now called RH Marine. I had a variety of roles to start with, but after a few years became involved with sales and eventually rose to manage a sales department. As a result, I have now been in the yachting industry for 14 years, and have grown to love it!
In 2014 I joined VBH, first as Business Development Director, but now I am also (?) responsible for the sales department and the service & refit and content & connectivity department. My ambition is to work with my colleagues to make VBH a full service provider throughout the complete life cycle of a vessel. To achieve this, the warranty and service period must become as important as the new build phase. To reach this ambitious goal we are professionalising our service & refit department and providing more content and connectivity support.
The VBH sales team is an enthusiastic group of professionals comprised of very knowledgeable and capable men and women. My ultimate goal is to build and maintain long-lasting relationships with our clients and stakeholders and position VBH in the market as the leading technology company. And with leading I mean delivering the best quality products and services!
For me, Living Technology means having a lot of high tech stuff that improves one’s quality of life. Sometimes technology complicates things, but good technology simplifies!
As a person I am very technology driven and also strive to achieve operational excellence. I love the fact that the yachting industry is innovative and challenging, and is built on relationships. I like to do new things, take risks and challenge myself, but always do what I promise! These are values highly appreciated in our market.
Away from work I am a family man. My girlfriend and I have been together for 29 years and are blessed with a 16-year-old son. I am passionate about music, films, books, sports and technology.
Director of Engineering
At VBH I head the technical department, focusing on the standardisation and improvement of engineering processes. I have a passion for technology and the way that it can improve our lives. I love exploring innovative gadgets and finding new ways to create and unlock content. To me, Living Technology means having technology around you in a subtle way. Having it always at your fingertips, ready to follow commands or being intuitive; sensing and anticipating your needs.
I really enjoy being involved in the yachting industry. Getting out on the water creates a kind of equanimity no other experience can match, and being on the water on a superyacht is just amazing. Being able to combine the passion for technology with the unequalled luxury of superyachts is a privilege for which I am very grateful.
As a person I aim to be always positive and ready to help others. I am interested in the world around me and eager to bring harmony. In my spare time I like to sense an atmosphere and improve it by playing music at all kinds of gatherings. Music and lights make me happy!
We work with owners, captains, leading yards, owners' representatives and designers from all over the world. If you would like to find out more about how we can contribute to the success of your new build, refit or ongoing operations, then please give us a call or send us an email.Contact us