An entrepreneurial pirate, that's what you can call Tacco Marijnen (34). The driven entrepreneur 'hacks' into different markets with innovative products. How does he manage all this? Tacco doesn't do business alone, but together. Crowfunding is the golden word here. De Tilburger sees opportunities in different markets and sails through them with different companies such as Crowd Cookware.
"From another company, we're working on household items, including pans. Here we work together with many European A-brand manufacturers. With the products of these manufacturers we saw a lot of innovations and things that we like. However, we also saw an enormous amount of air and margin within these products. That made us decide to develop our own pan, the Blackbeard. All the innovations and positive points that we saw in other products were combined in this pan. A pan of the same quality would normally cost around 100/130 euros. Our pan costs 39 euros. A low price for a high quality product. This is possible because we deliver directly from the factory to the consumer and settle for less margin. We are also very good at handling logistics. Our packaging is a good example of this. We pack everything in one box without any other box or unnecessary material around it. This is one of the ways in which we save costs. In addition to being functional, the packaging has also been nominated for the Dutch Packaging Awards".
From pan to mobile
Tacco hacks more than just the world of pots and pans. During a trip to China, he came across a concept that he had to bring directly to the Netherlands. "For the Blackbeard pan, I went to a manufacturer in China to place an order. While I was eating something with this manufacturer, what happened to me every day, my mobile phone was empty. When I asked if I could charge my mobile somewhere behind the bar, I was offered another solution: renting a powerbank. I was sold right away, but it became even more beautiful. After dinner I wanted to hand in my powerbank, but then my manufacturer said: no, you don't have to, take it with you, where we're going to have a drink later you can hand it in as well. So there is a network of charging stations where you can rent and return powerbanks. My first question was: why don't we have this in the Netherlands yet? When I returned home, I immediately set to work. I started the project via Crowdaboutnow. First in Rotterdam, but in the end we want to be found all over the Netherlands." Tacco recently made the news nationwide with this project, the Batterybox.
Which market is he going to hack now?
"We are currently busy with our own knife. As with the pan, it is of high quality, for a low price. We hope to start the campaign in June."
Doing business in Tilburg
"I am a born and raised Tilburg man. This is where I got my high school and where I went to university. After that I had a company in Amsterdam for a while, but I never really could settle there. My roots and network were in Tilburg. And networking, I think that is one of the most important factors for entrepreneurship. In Tilburg this is done in a very open way. Especially if you compare it to Amsterdam, where I used to have my company. Entrepreneurs here are willing to help each other. This is also important to me."
"Tilburg is really developing in a positive way. This also contributes to entrepreneurship. Not so much for my company, because we mainly operate on a national and international level. I don't have to get my business locally. But it's still a good starting point. Certainly also for international business."
Ten Year Challenge
At the moment all entrepreneurs in Tilburg can participate in the 10 Year Challenge. It's all about where you see yourself as an entrepreneur in ten years' time. We also asked Tacco this question. "For me, it is the dream that I have been able to successfully sell some of the companies I am currently working on. I don't think I'm the right person to stay with a company for ten years. I think that I am more the person who makes the start and facilitates the first growth. Then there are people who are better at taking the company forward. I also hope that in ten years' time I will still see new business opportunities and that I will be able to set them up with all the enthusiasm."
The golden tip from Tacco
"My golden tip for entrepreneurs is to travel a lot and visit a lot of fairs. I myself visit more than twenty fairs a year, ranging from trade and manufacturers to fitness and food fairs. There you always see the latest developments. By travelling you get to know different cultures, different habits and see different products in the market."