There are a number of living arrangements that have to be settled as I move out from under the umbrella: taking over housing contracts, establishing new telephone and credit card arrangements, sorting transportation, finding health insurance. So far, those seem to be going smoothly and as anticipated.
Beyond that, What‘s Next?
- It’s a time for winding things down with the corporation. I need to finish disengaging from tasks while staying engaged with colleagues. This includes sending change of address notices, updating contact information on social networks, and suspending e-mail accounts gracefully. I got a couple of calls from senior folks at the corporation on Friday, reviewing choices and discussing options. Its unlikely that there will be any 11th hour changes, but I appreciate the conversations.
- It’s also a time for the foot surgery that I’ve deferred during the job-search process. The surgeon, insurance company, and I are doing a slow dance to pick dates and to assure reimbursement, and I hope to sort something out for June. There’s a six week recovery period involved, so I want to try to get this all done as soon as possible so that I can get back to hiking and sailing (and my mother’s milestone birthday celebration late this summer).
- Finally, I have succeeded in establishing a Dutch corporation (Besloten Vennootschap or BV)! The papers for the BVio (preliminary incorporation as a BV) arrived on Friday, along with s “Welcome Package” (right) has arrived from the local Chamber of Commerce.(The Kamer van Koophandel or KvK).
My company is now listed in the Handelsregister, the book of Dutch corporations. It’s very cool to see it there :) The KvK has sent along more warnings than welcome in their packet, but it’s a big step forward.
And I can always hope that they might send over the welcome woman in person with the champagne and streamers?
The registration enables me to set up a business bank account and to fund the business at the required 18,000 euros to complete the registration as a full BV. The BV, in turn, allows me to create a product, to work from the Netherlands, to take advantage of favorable Dutch corporate tax policies, and to preserve my 30% tax ruling (a sole proprietorship would not). The next steps in the process will be to submit a business plan and application under the Dutch American Friendship Treaty to allow me to stay in the country as a resident worker.
It wouldn’t all swing into place before August, but the discipline of creating a business plan has opened up some very interesting opportunities that would be fun to pursue full-time. The product seems to fill a unique and valuable niche, but needs a bit more research on the customer’s economics. The technical aspects are all Web 2.0, and I’ve had interest from groups in the US and Asia for connecting components together. A local business incubator may provide office space and resources on favorable terms; I’ve got contacts through business colleagues to seed fund angels.
The extended convalescence will be a great opportunity to put structure and substance to the vision, to make sure that the product concept has legs, and to see whether a great team is interested.
Thanks again to everyone who has helped, supported, reviewed, and encouraged me over the past few months. It’s been invaluable in gathering the information and the confidence to take these steps.