ROM Nederland, the umbrella organisation for these RDAs, gives the following definition of a ROM: 'A regional development agency is a corporation with public shareholders, whose aim is to strengthen a region’s economy and bolster employment. As an RDA, we are a neutral player in a region and have no profit motive.'
The 9 ROMs each represent a region in the Netherlands. They focus on boosting the local economy and employment by stimulating innovation, investments and internationalisation. In other words: they help businesses, whether they are local or international, find their bearings, funding, employees, and building up a business network. By organising events and setting up meetings, the ROMs help you finding contacts with investors for your innovative product or service, with logistics operators, or whatever type of contact it is you need.
The ROMs focus on the regional strong points. For instance, the province of Limburg is situated ideally for trade and logistics, bordering as it does on Belgium, Germany, and Luxembourg. Noord-Brabant is home to one of the most innovative tech campuses in Europe, the High Tech Campus Eindhoven. And so every region has several focal points and strengths.
But the ROMs do more than promote growth. They also provide support in times of economic adversity.
How ROMs work
The Regional Development Corporations receive an annual budget. They primarily invest this money in funding innovative, fast-growing regional businesses in venture capital funds, and the development or rezoning of industrial estates and business parks.
They provide venture capital to business owners, sometimes in exchange for equity ownership.