Making the world smarter

The new ‘Elsevier 500’ has recently been published. In this edition, Jos Blejie tells more about innovation and acquisitions. Read the article below or download the PDF.

Please note: the text is in Dutch only.

ICT Group is een vooraanstaande technologie- en servicesprovider met een notering op de Amsterdam Exchange. Het bedrijf maakt sinds 2014 een forse groei door. CEO Jos Blejie vertelt over acquisities, succesvolle software en innovatie.

“Van zeshonderd medewerkers in 2014 naar vijftienhonderd in 2019: ja, we zijn onstuimig gegroeid”, zegt CEO Jos Blejie. “Deels autonoom, deels door overnames. Begin 2019 hebben we Additude uit Malmö overgenomen. Dit bedrijf won de afgelopen vier jaar de Zweedse Gazelle Award en is nu ook actief in Nederland, vooral in (tech)recruitment. Daarnaast verwierven we BNV Mobility, dat TURNN heeft ontwikkeld: het beste onafhankelijke MaaS-platform op de Nederlandse
markt. Met de recente overname van Proficium willen wij, samen met Nedmobiel, het ingenieursbureau van de toekomst neerzetten. Deze acquisities dragen daadwerkelijk bij aan onze strategie om een total solutions provider te worden.”

Digitale transformatie

ICT Group is actief in de industrie, de gezondheidszorg en het publieke domein. “We zijn al veertig jaar gespecialiseerd in industriële automatisering”, zegt Blejie. “Als het gaat om digitale transformatie, hebben wij een voorsprong op concurrenten.
Digitalisering en het omzetten van data in operationele bedrijfsinformatie zit in ons DNA.”

ICT Group is betrokken bij diverse grote projecten, zoals het Zuidasdok en de Gaasperdammertunnel. Blejie: “Onze software is toonaangevend. Zo heeft OrangeNXT, dat deel uitmaakt van ICT Group, mobileNXT ontwikkeld: een platform dat buitendienstmedewerkers een kantoor op zakformaat biedt.”


“In Nederland is het aanbod van technici schaars”, zegt Blejie. “Toch weten we mensen ook hier te boeien en binden. Via onze CoLab-community werken we met studenten aan oplossingen die in de toekomst het verschil maken. Dat we onze
reputatie van opleider waarmaken, blijkt uit de tweede plaats die we in de recente Computable 100 scoorden in de ranking ‘Opleidingen & Trainingen’. ICT Group is aanwezig in Nederland, België, Duitsland, Zweden en Bulgarije. Wij
hebben dus een sterke positie in Noord-Europa en zullen deze verder blijven verstevigen.”

ICT Netherlands is awarded project for energy community Loenen

During the next few years, the Loenen municipality is hosting activities that will create the energy system of the future. In order to centrally manage the energy that is generated locally and merge this energy into a community-based Virtual Power Plant (cVPP), the Sustainable Projects Loenen Foundation (Stichting Duurzame Projecten Loenen) selected ICT Netherlands as its IT partner.

“ICT offers an excellent price/quality ratio. One of the reasons for selecting them as supplier of the system was the system’s early roll-out and delivery date. Moreover, the possibility to control extra devices beyond the scope of our request offered additional value”, says Willem Dikker Hupkes, chaiman of the Sustainable Projects Loenen Foundation (Stichting Duurzame Projecten Loenen). “During the last couple of years inhabitants and businesses already invested 1.25 million Euros in sustainability projects such as installing solar panels and insulation through Loenen Energy Neutral. The next step is to maximise the local consumption of the energy that was generated in a sustainable manner. This is the reason why we chose the EU level to initiate the cVPP project aimed at realising an Energy Management System.”

Expertise energy domain
A cVPP is a model in which citizens who generate and consume energy decentrally are connected virtually, thus creating one, single, large entity that generates and consumes energy.” Eric van der Laan, Business Development Executive Energy at ICT Group: “As a technical IT company we know what’s involved in the process of connecting sustainable equipment such as solar panels, heat pumps, electric cars and batteries. In addition, we offer a wealth of expertise in the energy domain. We understand the entire spectrum, the context, and we are thoroughly familiar with the future developments that may be relevant for the Loenen municipality. And of course we take all these factors into account during the project’s realisation phase.”

ICT Group has been carrying out similar projects during the last ten years. “In addition to the technical and organisational expertise, we have accumulated a good amount of experience in the various ways in which you can involve inhabitants in the project. And our experience resulted directly in a smart application.” Van der Laan is referring to Earn-e, a smart gateway that is installed in each household at the beginning of the project. “Giving inhabitants insight into the amount of energy they generate and consume themselves ensures that they’re actively involved.” Earn-e was developed by Wijkie, a young company that stimulates maximum local consumption of locally generated solar energy. Earn-e was one of the companies for whom ICT developed the platform. “But we have so many other partners who we can also involve providing it would add value to the project.”

Interreg NWE project
The project for realising a community-based Virtual Power Plant is part of the Interreg North-West Europe-project, led by the Eindhoven Technical University. The objective of the project for the Sustainable Projects Loenen Foundation (Stichting Duurzame Projecten Loenen) is to optimise the benefits achieved by generating sustainable energy within the community. The first phase entails solar cells, heat pumps and electric transport, while a field of solar panels and Smart Grid Ready Heat-installations will be added in the longer term. After its realisation, ICT Group will manage the project for a period of at least three years. The energy project of the future involves some 100 households and possibly more in years to come. Van der Laan concludes: “This project allows us to take a nice next step in our service portfolio towards energy communities in which we serve individual households, but where we can pay particular attention to the households as a group, resulting in a virtual energy station.”

Water authority Hollandse Delta and ICT Group sign agreement for future-proof management of water system

Requirements with regard to water management are becoming increasingly strict. In the past water management activities mainly consisted of managing the water level, however this is no longer sufficient. Factors such as more intensive use of space and water as well as climate change are imposing pressure on water management making proper management of water, in terms of both quantity and quality, increasingly important. In order to ensure a sustainable and efficient level of management of the water system, Secretary-director Eric Jongmans of the Hollandse Delta water authority (WSHD) signed the agreement ‘uniform object management’ with ICT Group (ICT).

The area managed by WSHD consists of five islands and more that 750 measurement areas. The area is managed by infrastructure objects with barrages, pumping stations, valves, inlets and locks. The project involves migrating and creating a uniform Technical Automation (TA) water system with over 475 objects and central systems within a period of four years. The migration is followed by a management phase of 15 years.

ICT uses its solution Waterproof to realise the project. This solution comprises the latest open and standardised telemetrics interfaces, completely integrated with WSHD’s  current Geographical Information System (GIS) and in compliance with the Baseline Information Security Government (BIO).

Eric Jongmans is looking forward to a long-term and sustainable relationship: “Modifying the management of our barrages, pumping stations and other objects enables us to facilitate and improve the way in which we monitor the water in ditches, canals and lakes. This investment is a big step towards making the management and quality of the water future-proof.”

The project has already started and will run until the end of 2023, followed by a 15-year contract for maintenance and management.

Water 4.0 challenges the water sector

The developments in the field of automation, and especially computerization, are going so fast that the water-dominated water sector cannot lag behind. Where water policy normally dictates the pace, now the rapidly innovative ICT technology seems to determine the developments.

The control room has already entered the water sector. In water management, this is already indispensable. But nowadays, water boards and drinking water companies also have control rooms from which things can be controlled and monitored remotely. The current state of affairs is an ever-increasing automation. The future will mainly bring more computerization, as recently appeared at the ICT Group Water Congres 2019. Waterforum was present at the leading Water Congres and published the accompanying article.

Note: the article is written in Dutch.

Do you want to learn more about the ICT Group Water Congress 2019? Click here!

Successful support from A.S. Watson during Black Friday and Cyber ​​Monday

Black Friday and Cyber ​​Monday are both a phenomenon that grow every year in the Netherlands. On Friday, November 29 and Monday, December 2, it was that time of the year again. A.S. Watson, with formulas such as Kruidvat, ICI Paris XL and Trekpleister, prepared itself for massive crowds in its warehouses in order to be able to process the expected peak in (online) purchases. ICT Transport & Logistics supported the market leader in the Health & Beauty market in the Netherlands, Belgium and France, also during this extremely busy period.

ICT Group’s business unit Transport & Logistics is the builder of the Smart Warehouse Management System (DCS) for the Distribution Centers of A.S. Watson in the Benelux. This DCS system is the IT heart of the logistic processing of all web orders within Kruidvat and ICI Paris XL.

During peak periods such as Black Friday and Cyber ​​Monday, it is crucial that all processes in the warehouse continue to run optimally. There is a huge increase in orders on these days and these orders must be processed as quickly as possible to prevent congestion. During these periods of extreme pressure, the team from ICT  is on the lookout to give A.S. Watson the right support.

Thanks to automatic e-mail alerts, ICT professionals receive a notification in case of problems. The team can respond to it adequately, so that orders can still be read and processed quickly. Thanks to the good coordination between functional management, the people on the expedition floor and the ICT Transport & Logistics team, customers of, among others, Kruidvat were once again allowed to receive their orders in a timely and complete manner.

Recently A.S Watson and the team from ICT Transport & Logistics celebrated their 25-year partnership. In those 25 years, ICT has been able to develop and manage the Warehouse Management System (WMS), whereby all products pass through the chain as efficiently as possible. The strength is in the people, the team and in the collaboration. Kruidvat knows what is needed, ICT knows what the options are. We really complement each other.

Do you want to know more about the DCS of A.S. Watson? Read the case study.

Royal visit for Groningen and Drenthe

Koning Willem-Alexander bracht een werkbezoek aan de regio Groningen en Drenthe ter voorbereiding op de Nieuwjaarsontvangst van Koning Willem-Alexander en Koningin Máxima in januari 2020. Daar sprak hij onder andere met vertegenwoordigers van het openbaar vervoer over de samenwerking met vervoerders om het openbaar- en publiek vervoer te organiseren.

— Only available in Dutch —

Ook werd de koning bijgepraat over de ontwikkeling van een app voor alle reigers in Groningen en Drenthe en daarbuiten, waarmee zij zelf een reis kunnen plannen, boeken en betalen. ICT Group sloot recent een contract met de vervoerder uit de regio, Qbuzz, voor de ontwikkeling van een Mobility as a Service (MaaS) platform en bijbehorende app: TURNN. Met TURNN worden alle vervoersopties gecombineerd in één app, van (deel)fiets en (deel)auto, tot OV en (water)taxi. Zo wordt reizen nog makkelijker!

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ICT Healthcare Technology Solutions was present at the MEDICA exhibition in Düsseldorf

ICT Healthcare Technology Solutions was present, together with partner Medlife, at the MEDICA trade fair at Messe Düsseldorf on November 18, 19, 20 and 21.

The launch of MososNXT CTG was the main topic at the exhibition. MososNXT CTG is the new generation CTG solution. It is easy to integrate with an existing environment and offers secure insight on your mobile. The launch of this new solution generated a lot of interest among potential customers.

MEDICA is the world’s largest medical trade fair in the world with around 5500 exhibitors from 71 countries in 17 halls and has been around for more than 40 years.

Successful participation at SPS 2019

On November 26, 27, and 28 ICT Machine & Systems was present at the Smart Production Solutions (SPS) exhibition in Nurnberg, Germany. This exhibition is one of the largest international exhibitions in the field of electrical automation technology.

The unit was found at the 3S partner booth (CODESYS Group).  At the booth, visitors were informed about projects and products. “We help customers who build machines in series and need a machine-specific control for this. We help the customer and develop and deliver the desired controls”, says Arjan Kleiboer, Sr. Business Development Manager Machine & Systems. The successful participation in the exhibition led to follow-up appointments with interested visitors.


MaaS pilot helps to maintain sustainable access to Brainport Eindhoven

Starting next year, employees of the Eindhoven municipality and ASML will use ICT Group N.V.’s TURNN app. The app is part of a pilot initiated by the municipality, ASML and Brainport Development to stimulate alternatives for private vehicles, to make travelling easier and to improve the accessibility of Brainport Eindhoven. The pilot in Eindhoven is one of the seven national MaaS pilots organised by the Ministry of Infrastructure and Water management (IenW) in collaboration with regional authorities.

On November 28th, the Eindhoven municipality, ASML and Brainport Development signed a collaboration agreement with ICT Group. As of 2020, employees of the Eindhoven municipality and ASML can use the app to plan, book and pay their journeys throughout the entire country. As a next step and within the context of the employers approach, Brainport Smart Mobility will start encouraging as many regional employers as possible to participate and thus maintain the region’s accessibility in a smart and sustainable manner.

ICT Group and Arriva take the next step in Mobility as a Service with Via-Go

Arriva has won the tender for the Mobility as a Service pilot “Limitless Mobility” in Limburg. This gives Limburg the scoop with the launch of the new national platform Via-Go from Arriva.

TURNN, an ICT Group company, is developing the MaaS platform Via-Go for Arriva. With Via-Go you plan, book and pay for your trip in one app. All means of transport, from (partial) bicycle to taxi and from bus transport to e-scooter are connected to and offered via the platform. This way the traveler has access to all possible means of transport in the Via-Go app, tailored to personal preferences. The ease of use is paramount when developing the app.

Also read the press release from Arriva (only available in Dutch).