Nov 19, 2023 at 1:02 PM Update: 6 minutes ago
Former VDL CEO Wim van der Leegte passed away on the night from Saturday to Sunday at the age of 76. His family reported this in a statement.
VDL was founded in 1953 by Wim van der Leegte’s father. In 1966, Wim became involved in his father’s company as a HTS student. “Due to various factors, his father Pieter van der Leegte senior became overworked in the summer. As a result, Wim was in charge of the company within three months,” writes VDL. In 1972 Wim took over all the shares.
Van der Leegte was president of the billion-dollar company for 44 years. His son Willem has been in charge of the company since 2016. His other children Pieter and Jennifer also joined the management of VDL that year.
Since its founding, the group has grown into an organization with more than a hundred companies and more than sixteen thousand employees active in nineteen countries. For example, VDL has car manufacturer Nedcar in Born. The company’s total turnover last year was almost 5.8 billion euros.
Van der Leegte was appointed Commander in the Order of Orange-Nassau in 2014 for his contribution to the Dutch manufacturing industry. Van der Leegte died of natural causes at home in his hometown of Duizel.
Chairman Ingrid Thijssen of the VNO-NCW business organization said in a response that Van der Leegte had meant “an extraordinary amount”. “He was creative and innovative. And a model of entrepreneurship. He put the manufacturing industry back on the map with his VDL, which he single-handedly expanded into a global concern.”
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