Primark opens new flagship store in Forum Rotterdam

Primark opens new flagship store in Forum Rotterdam

Rotterdam's new flagship store is Primark's 21st location in the Netherlands. The retailer is known for offering fashion, accessories and homewares at bargain prices. This flagship store is estimated to create more than 300 new jobs.
ROTTERDAM, 21 April 2021 - Primark, the international retailer known for its "Amazing Fashion, Amazing Prices" slogan, today has opened the doors of a new flagship store in Forum Rotterdam. The shop covers an area of more than 7400 m2 and offers items like fashion and everyday essentials.

Three Primark stores in Rotterdam

Forum Rotterdam is Primark's third store in the city. Primark opened its first store in Rotterdam Alexandrium in 2008, marking Primark's entry into the Dutch retail market at the time. The new Rotterdam flagship store will create over 300 new jobs in the city and give a major boost to the local economy.
Kevin Tulip, Director of Sales Primark Benelux, explains why Primark chose to open a third location in Rotterdam: "We have a special bond with Rotterdam since we opened our very first Dutch store here over ten years ago. We have a large number of loyal customers in Rotterdam visiting our stores in Alexandrium and Zuidplein, and we are excited to bring a new store to the city to meet customer demand. The size, scale and range of products will make this store stand out from the crowd, and our customers will have a great shopping experience. We at Primark are proud to offer Rotterdam its own flagship store, and we look forward to welcoming customers to our new store."
Inside the new Primark flagship store at Forum RotterdamInside the new Primark flagship store at Forum Rotterdam

Customer safety measures

The new Primark shop is currently open by appointment. Appointments can be booked via the website, four hours before a shop visit. Each appointment is limited to one person per booking and allows customers 50 minutes of shopping time in the Primark shop. Customers can book an appointment via the Primark website.
As of 28 April, the current COVID-19 measures taken by the government will be adjusted, and it will be possible to visit the store without an appointment. However, conditions still apply, such as a maximum number of visitors in the shop. Of course, our security measures remain in force.
New escalators unveiled at World Trade Center Rotterdam

New escalators unveiled at World Trade Center Rotterdam

On 13 April 2021, brand-new escalators at WTC Rotterdam were taken into use for the first time. The outdoor escalators move both diagonally and horizontally while following the contours of the stairs, making them unique in the Netherlands. 
ROTTERDAM, 13 April 2021 - Today, the new escalators of the World Trade Center Rotterdam were put into operation for the first time. The eye-catchers are not only a new asset for the streetscape of Rotterdam, but also unique in the Netherlands. They are the very first outdoor escalators that follow the platform and thus move both diagonally and horizontally. WTC Rotterdam has been working on making the monumental building more sustainable for some time now. The revitalization of the entrance area is part of the large master plan with which WTC Rotterdam is being prepared for the future.
Architectural firm BiermanHenket, builder Van Wijnen, supplier Schindler and project manager Cushman & Wakefield Project & Development Services worked for months on the realization of the escalators. Managing Director of World Trade Center Rotterdam Eveline Steenbergen is enthusiastic about the final result: "We are extremely proud that the Netherlands' first outdoor escalators lead to the entrance of World Trade Center Rotterdam. It is the epitome of modern technology, and at the same time the monumental character of the building and the beautiful staircase have been preserved. The symmetry has returned and even the tiles that had to be removed for the escalator have been reused where the old escalator used to be."
New unique escalators installed at WTC Rotterdam 📷 Gerrit VermeulenNew unique escalators installed at WTC Rotterdam 📷 Gerrit Vermeulen
The escalators are also very special on an international scale, explains Rob Jue, Director of New Construction at supplier Schindler: "Even in the 'escalator world' these are special specimens. Worldwide, the number of outdoor escalators is very small. After all, this is a very complex construction and the stairs also have to be able to withstand all kinds of weather conditions. The escalators are therefore more robust than other escalators, so that they can really face a long future. Naturally, the escalators have been produced as sustainably as possible and are low in energy consumption."

Revitalization of WTC Rotterdam

The delivery of the escalators marks the completion of the second phase of work on the main entrance. This brings WTC Rotterdam one step closer to the completion of the grand master plan. This plan will provide tenants and visitors with even more high-quality facilities, including a hotel, brasserie, company restaurant and an in-house city gym. In the coming period, much work will be done to complete the plan, including the opening of the new brasserie Jules and the rest of the entrance area.

About World Trade Center Rotterdam

World Trade Center Rotterdam, situated in the bustling city centre and in the middle of the Central Business District, has been part of Bouwinvest's Office Fund since 2015 and has a total floor area of 82,000 m². As a member of the World Trade Centers Association, WTC Rotterdam is part of the large international network of World Trade Centers and works intensively with various partners in the field of international business. The former Beursgebouw is a national monument and currently offers accommodation to approx. 100 tenants. In addition to the rental of state-of-the-art office space, freelancers and occasional renters are provided with flexible workspace in the Business Center. The building is known for its high level of facilities, including a hotel with 168 rooms, a conference centre, the Coffee Salon, an Art Gallery, in-house gym, company restaurant, brasserie, WTC Service Store, car parks and shops.
Two new coronavirus testing locations in Rotterdam

Two new coronavirus testing locations in Rotterdam

Getting tested for COVID-19 is now easier for Rotterdammers as opens two new rapid testing facilities in the city. The result of a rapid test is given within 30 minutes. PCR-test results take just a few hours and patients are provided with a globally recognized travel certificate.
ROTTERDAM, 9 April 2021  - This week, is opening two new branches in Rotterdam. The location at the Ungerplein 2 marks the 60th branch of in the Netherlands. This Saturday, the new site at Schiedamseweg 13A in Rotterdam will be opened. Together with the Bergse Dorpsstraat 26B, three locations in Rotterdam will now offer a PCR test with a worldwide recognized travel certificate, a rapid test and/or an antibody test.
It is the ambition of to get a good national coverage with 100 locations, so that everyone in the Netherlands can be at a location within 20 minutes. is a cooperation partner of Arbodienst Medprevent, which has recently been approved by the Ministry of Health to offer employers free antigen rapid tests for employees with symptoms.

Reopening the community

"We are very happy with this new milestone: no less than three branches in Rotterdam!" said Rasmus Emmelkamp, co-founder and CEO of "Barely 7 months ago we started and two branches. We already noticed that people prefer to be tested in their familiar surroundings, instead of in a container on a shunting yard. Our centrally located test sites are therefore located in empty shops or office buildings. Meanwhile, has grown to 60 locations and over 400 well-trained employees. Arbodienst Medprevent has recently entered into a partnership with, commissioned by the Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport, to offer employers rapid tests in order to test employees with symptoms. We are proud that in this way we can contribute to the (re)opening of the Dutch society in the best possible way."

About facilitates accessible, reliable and rapid coronavirus testing by certified staff, according to the standards of the RIVM and the Inspectorate of Health and Youth. This is done from one of the 60 locations of The result of a rapid test is given within 30 minutes, the result of a PCR test after just a few hours, including a globally recognized travel certificate. The ambition is to get a good national coverage with 100 locations, so that everyone can be at a location within 20 minutes driving time.
Rotterdam successful in 'resetting' debt assistance approach

Rotterdam successful in 'resetting' debt assistance approach

Rotterdam's revised approach to consumer debts has resulted in improved accessibility of debt assistance and better reach among young people.
ROTTERDAM, 1 APRIL 2021 - Two years ago Rotterdam carried out a "Reset" of its debt approach. This is working: the number of Rotterdammers with problematic debts has decreased in recent years. From 27,000 in 2018 to 25,000 in 2020. More Rotterdammers receive help, there are fewer drop-outs, the service is improved and many new interventions and collaborations have been started.
In 2020 4,135 Rotterdammers (including 151 entrepreneurs) received debt assistance from the city. Despite the corona crisis, which caused limitations in the opportunities for physical contact, this was substantially more than in 2019 (3,534). Twice as many young people applied for and received debt assistance. Of these, 44 entered the perspective fund: they do something in return and their debts are settled.
The Reset Rotterdam debt approach has three ambitions: to prevent Rotterdammers from getting into debt (especially young people), to help Rotterdammers get their debts under control and to introduce more innovations in the approach. The city council is now actively approaching Rotterdammers with (early) payment arrears. In addition, in 2020, throughout the city debt counsellors have been expedited; in each area there is now a permanent point of contact for indebted Rotterdammers and cooperating partners. The creation of a relationship of trust with citizens to work on debt and poverty is the starting point.

More young people reached

More young people find the way to help. In 2020, 1,018 young people reported to the municipality with a financial request for help. For 760 young people a support trajectory was started through the Perspective Pact. Different interventions are possible within the Perspective Pact: from courses to budget management and from a debt settlement to participation in the Perspective Fund. If young people do not manage to settle their debts themselves, the fund pays off the debts. The young person "pays off" the debt by a performance, in the form of an internship or voluntary work.
The relaxation of the admission criteria of the perspective fund resulted in a much larger inflow into the fund: 44 young people have now started. Another way to reach young people is with a 'students for students' approach. Last year, about 130 young people were helped in this way.
"The fact that we are reaching more young people is promising", says alderman Michiel Grauss (fighting poverty, tackling debts and informal care): "We know that financial problems lead to a lot of stress. The current corona situation adds to this. Many young people have lost their temporary jobs in the hospitality industry and have less income. In addition, the lockdown measures have meant that the counters have not always been easily accessible. As a municipality, we therefore pull out all the stops to find young people with money worries or debts in time. Proactively and low-threshold, in places where they are active".

Entrepreneurs free of debt more quickly

The municipality will soon start a test to get entrepreneurs with debts free of debts in six months instead of three years. It concerns entrepreneurs who want to stop their business and are looking for paid employment. The repayment period for the restructuring loan, which normally takes three years, is shortened to six months. After these six months, the residual debt is cancelled. In return, the participant must make an effort, with assistance, to provide for his or her own income.

To one in six children in poverty

The number of children growing up in a family with a low income fell from one in five in 2016 to almost one in six (17.7%) in 2019. In order to tackle poverty structurally well, a pilot (intensive family approach) was started. By now, 282 families in four districts (Bospolder-Tussendijken, Tarwewijk and Crooswijk and in Carnisse) are receiving help. In this approach, building trust is the starting point for subsequently tackling the problems together.
Alderman Grauss: "We are on the right track: fewer children are living in poverty and more Rotterdammers are getting help with their debts. But we are not there yet. We need to increase our reach. The corona crisis is also causing a lot of financial stress and problems. In 2021, we will increase our efforts to reach and help (early on) more indebted Rotterdammers.

Facts and figures

The total amount of debts which Rotterdammers reported to the city council in 2020 amounted to 74.8 million. Of this, 66.1 million was waived through mediation. This means that 11.6% of the debts have been paid off. The average debt in 2020 amounts to €41,670 per person. The most common creditors are benefit agencies, health insurers, energy suppliers and the National Tax Office. The percentage of successful debt settlements has increased last year compared to 2019 by 3% to 87%. At the end of 2020, 3,453 Rotterdammers were in budget management and 594,000 payments (€82.2 million) were made for these Rotterdammers during the entire year.
Uber competitor Bolt expands taxi services to Rotterdam

Uber competitor Bolt expands taxi services to Rotterdam

After a successful launch in Amsterdam, Bolt is now available in Rotterdam. The taxi service is a direct competitor to Uber and differentiates itself by charging their drivers up to 50% less commission than other companies.
ROTTERDAM, 11 March 2021 - As of today you can use the fast-growing European taxi service Bolt in Rotterdam. After a successful launch in Amsterdam and Haarlem in 2020 and recent expansion to 't Gooi and Almere, the company has set its sights on also contributing to the various forms of (micro) mobility in Rotterdam. Rotterdam is the first in what is to be a major expansion to several cities in the Netherlands in 2021.

No need for car ownership

Lars Speekenbrink, country manager in the Netherlands: "Rotterdam is one of the largest cities in the Netherlands with a booming economy. This is therefore a logical next step for Bolt. As we approach the moment when more is possible, access to safe and affordable transport is crucial. By expanding to Rotterdam now, we are committed to offering more choice and good quality, for both passengers and drivers."
Rotterdam is also an interesting city logistically, Speekenbrink says: "Rotterdam The Hague Airport and the Port of Rotterdam are important, major mobility hubs in this city. The hubs play an important role on a business and international level. In addition, an interesting development is taking place in Rotterdam when it comes to (micro) mobility. The city is daring to experiment with different forms of mobility such as shared scooters and various forms of public transport. All these initiatives, of which Bolt is now one, offer the chance to make the city even more accessible without the need for car ownership."
European Uber competitor Bolt expands taxi services to Rotterdam European Uber competitor Bolt expands taxi services to Rotterdam

Better deal

Because Bolt operates efficiently and charges its drivers up to 50 per cent less commission than the competition, both drivers and passengers get a better deal. In addition, through the Economy category, Bolt offers rides with 10% lower prices for the same vehicles, making it the most affordable taxi service on the market. In Rotterdam, Bolt is also immediately starting the Protect category, which aims to prevent the possibility of the coronavirus spreading.
The Bolt app is available for download and for iOS and Android.

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