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Corda Connect: “An ideal environment for making an impression on your visitors”

10 September 2020


As Corda Campus has grown, TrendMiner has undergone a similar metamorphosis. The software company now occupies an entire floor of Corda 2. CTO Thomas Dhollander and Managing Director Joan van de Wetering love where they work. Even if they do have a few suggestions for some extras it would be nice to have on Corda Campus…

A TrendMiner – is that a trendy version of a Limburg mine worker?

“The similarity with miners is that we too dig into a large entity for something of value and bring it to the surface,” the pair say. “TrendMiner is a software platform designed for engineers, production managers and operators of large manufacturing businesses such as Total or BASF. They can use it to find interesting patterns in large quantities of data collected using sensors in the factory. They can then use the results to make recommendations or issue warnings. Our software is designed to allow clients to manufacture more efficiently, cheaply or in a more energy-efficient way.”

And it’s going well?

“We now have over 100 clients in 20 countries and process data from many tens of millions of sensors in over 500 factories. So, yes. Since TrendMiner sits in the fast-growing market of the industrial Internet of Things, we are riding that wave and the prospects for further growth are excellent.”

What underground corridors must we pass through to find TrendMiner?

“We occupy the entire top floor of the new Corda 2 building. We worked with Belisia interior designers in Bilzen to transform the space into a super-cool, light and airy office in true Silicon Valley style, including a terrace, our own kitchen, as well as a Playstation and darts board so our staff can relax. This is our headquarters where some 70 of our 100 employees are based.”

Do you remember why you chose to move to the campus?

“Yes, because LRM presented it to us (they both laugh). At that time Corda Campus was still under construction, but as a startup there were a lot of opportunities. The offering is much more complete these days, with various catering options, the conference center, the parcel service, great keynote events and so on.  All these facilities together make Corda the ideal environment for ambitious startups and scale-ups. We know that from our own experience. The campus also looks great, so visitors and staff alike enjoy spending time here. The surroundings make an impression and that reflects on our company’s image.”

Which are your favourite co-tenants that we might run into?

“The campus is full of interesting companies, of course, but if you get an opportunity to go into Epihunter, you have to grab it. They help people with epilepsy to get a handle on their condition using data analysis. It’s a great startup, if you ask us. Another favourite is Erbacom. They are a provider of superfast Internet, and everyone can do with that.”

Do you do business with other tenants?

“Absolutely. In addition to Erbacom, we do business with various other companies. For instance, we use Thalento’s tests for assessments, Atrado provides our translations and To The Point Events devises the experiences for our events and marketing campaigns. Like good neighbours, we want to build up goodwill with the other tenants of Corda Campus.

What are the challenges for Corda if it wants to move up a gear?

“The campus certainly has a role to play in the search for good staff. It’s still a problem that a lot of companies here are battling with. What we dream of is an initiative to attract more top talent from neighbouring regions such as the Netherlands, Germany and Wallonia. It would also be fantastic if more students could be attracted to a technical career here. That would be a huge boost for the growth of all the companies here.”

Growth means recruiting more people. And that means a harder fight for a parking space…

“The parking problem is already being tackled with the construction of the new offices. Nevertheless, we must make sure that, with further expansion, mobility is managed properly. It mustn’t become suffocating when you walk around or go for a bite to eat at lunchtime. But the people at Corda are smart enough to know how to scale the infrastructure in relation to volume of activity.”

What would you suggest to campus director Raf Degens when he outlines his plans for campus 2.0?

“The conference center could be a bit bigger and the catering facilities could be more extensive. And a small supermarket, perhaps? And other convenience services and nice-to-haves such as a dry cleaner, a car wash and a gym…”

Imagine you could pick up the campus with a big crane. Where would you set it down?

“In Houston, where we have an office. The benefits of the ecosystem that has been created in Hasselt would be greatly appreciated there. Most dreams are an illusion, but you never know…”