Florijnz accompanies Plukkebol in their sale to Partou.
Florijnz had the opportunity to assist Mark Siep and Rob Vullings of Plukkebol with the sale of their company. We look back on a successful project in which we achieved a nice result.
How did Plukkebol get started?
My mother and aunt started Plukkebol in 1987 with 4 children. The municipality of Delft helped to find housing in a school building that also housed an elementary school. The elementary school was not running well and was getting smaller and smaller, our daycare on the other hand was running very well and could gradually grow as the elementary school needed fewer and fewer classrooms. My father converted the available classrooms into spaces for child care. Eventually the elementary school was closed due to the student shortage and we had all 16 classrooms at our disposal and grew to 132 child places for daycare and out-of-school care. From 2002, Plukkebol started opening new locations and now some 500 children use our care. Together with my partner Rob, I took over the family business in 2008 and expanded it further in size and quality.
Why did the sale of Plukkebol come up?
We have enjoyed Plukkebol immensely. Childcare is a very personal service to parents. After all, it is about their most precious possession: their child. At the same time, childcare is a rich world in which children are offered additional development opportunities. Rob focused on the service to parents and I on the pedagogical side. A division that suited our company well and in which we could express our passion. Despite all the success, entrepreneurship became increasingly difficult due to external factors. The period during Corona, despite a good compensation scheme from the government, was intense and intense. And it was followed by an even more intense period due to major personnel shortages. This, combined with increasingly complex regulations from The Hague and the prospect of a system change in 2025 (now postponed to 2027), made us wonder whether we still saw a future for ourselves in our role as owner/director.
In the end, what was the deciding factor in entering the sales process?
We see the space for entrepreneurship and innovation getting smaller and smaller in child care, and growing bureaucracy increasingly stands in the way of essential quality. Within this climate we did not feel comfortable for some time. More and more energy was going into side issues that were putting pressure on our passion. So we decided to sell our company. Good for us, so that we can give our passion room again in a new branch, and good for our company, because it gets a new leadership that is equipped to deal with the challenges the childcare sector is facing.
What struck you most during this journey?
The great interest and appreciation for our company by several potential buyers has done us very well. It emphasizes once again what great things we have realized and that this will continue. That does us very well.
How did you end up at Florijnz?
A fellow childcare entrepreneur known to us had sold her business last year. It was very helpful that she shared her experiences with us and she referred us to Florijnz, who also guided the sale of her business.
How did you experience working with Florijnz?
The collaboration with Florijnz was good right away. There was a good balance between business and the more emotional side that also played a big role for us. It is quite complicated to sell your company, which you have worked on with heart and soul. There was a lot of attention for both sides. We also liked the fact that Florijnz knows the childcare market inside out. That makes you speak each other's language and you don't have to explain too much. They also know the potential buyers well and know what is important to them. In the end, they succeeded in bringing together the wishes of us as seller and those of the buyer, so that both sides were happy with the outcome.
If you were to do everything over again, what would you do differently?
An important lesson for us was to check earlier in the process whether our archive of permits was complete and in order. An important environmental permit turned out to be lost. The municipality's archive also turned out to be incomplete, which meant we had to reapply for a new permit fairly late in the process. Such a process can easily take two months and can be a reason for the buyer to postpone the sale until the permit has been re-issued.
Wondering what Florijnz can do for your business? We would love to get in touch with you about the possibilities.