Pavan: ‘Good relationships are important, also in business’

Paola and Linda Pavan-Geraedts-photo by Kim Balster

Paolo Pavan and his wife Linda are paving the way between Italy and the Netherlands

The world is small. We can go anywhere and live in many different places. We can communicate with anyone at anytime, anywhere in the world. Yet the cultural gap between countries and nationalities is often huge, which often makes doing business internationally or working in another country difficult. Paolo Pavan and his wife Linda Pavan-Geraedts are helping reduce the distance between Eindhoven and Italy as much as possible, which offers some wonderful perspectives.

Old toll and customs office Eindhoven

The place where the Pavan companies are located is symbolic. As a toll and customs office, the Bleekstraat 1 building in Eindhoven was once a pivotal part of trade between local businesses and (inter)national customers. Italian nobleman Paolo Pavan also wants to fulfil such a crucial function. The inscription on the facade is just as revealing: Pavan, family & company office. Entrepreneurship never stands alone, but is always embedded in family and friendships. Pavan Associates is not only dedicated to companies, it also guides (mostly Italian) expats on their way to Eindhoven and its surroundings.

The word ‘relationship’ is used a hundred times during my conversation with the passionate Italian, who also recently became chairman of the Italian Chamber of Commerce in the Netherlands.

Laura de Troia (PA at Pavan) and Paolo Pavan – photo by Kim Balster

IF A PERSONAL RELATIONSHIP IS NOT THERE, ANY ATTEMPT TO DO BUSINESS IN ITALY IS NOT LIKELY TO SUCCEED. “So, look for people who can put you in touch with a company, and then meet each other! Get to know each other and the deal will follow. There are certainly examples of this – Pavan Associates has already established successful relationships between Dutch importers of fresh fruit and Italian fruit growers, but also between Italian horticulturalists and Dutch suppliers of greenhouses and associated climate systems. It can be quite difficult, as Italian growers initially believe only sun and fresh air can lead to tasty lemons. Conversely, Pavan helps Dutch designers overcome their prejudices about Italy by finding small-scale production facilities.

ECONOMIC GROWTH AND PROSPERITY IN THE REGION LED TO AN ENORMOUS INCREASE IN THE NUMBER OF INTERNATIONAL KNOWLEDGE WORKERS. Pavan Associates meets a need – providing guidance and support for these expatriates. “We are a sort of guide for many expatriates – mostly Italians, but other nationalities too. This office is a one-stop-shop for them. They can come here if they want to do business with Dutch companies, but also for guidance in buying a house. We put them in contact with a notary, an estate agent and a bank. And, if they want, we can look for the right suppliers for gas and light.” Because the cultural gap Dutch people feel in Italy is also felt by Italian expats here. “We understand the customer’s needs and provide them with the best possible support. We want to be the client’s go-to and, if necessary, hire external assistance with specific qualities so we can offer tailor-made solutions.”

Old toll and customs office near Eindhoven harbour

Financial and fiscal support remains – if the client so desires – within the family. WIGEPA is located on the first floor of the tastefully restored office building on Bleekstraat, where Linda Pavan-Geraedts, who has more than twenty years of experience as an accountant, is in charge. She also employs a number of specialised professionals in the field of international tax legislation and regulations. They guide clients – companies and individuals – through the ups and downs of their international path. WIGEPA offers the highest quality service to expatriates, says Linda. “Of course, everything is done in accordance with applicable laws and regulations. We take care of a lot of communication for our customers. We are a true guide, supporting our business customers in their entrepreneurship and helping them achieve the results they strive for.”

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