Brightlands Campus Greenport Venlo: four new innovators

november 23, 2019

The Brightlands ecosystem is constantly evolving. From large companies to start-ups, new campus residents are joining us all the time. Meet the new faces at Brightlands Campus Greenport Venlo: Mushroom4Health, Impactfabriek, Stichting IKL and Vertical Rainforest BV!


Peter Christiaens and Leo van Griensven are the driving forces behind Mushrooms4Health. This company wants to extract health-promoting substances from mushrooms and market them as dietary supplements. The first product is already available on the market: a dietary supplement for calves that promotes these young animals’ resistance, reducing the need for antibiotics. Leo: “We also want to develop a dietary supplement for people. Our location on campus offers us a unique opportunity to provide extra backup for our own research. Take Maastricht University's research at the campus on the ingredients and health effects of vegetables, for example. This is an important addition to the knowledge that we, as a company, need now and in the future.”

Stichting IKL: turning Limburg green

Stichting IKL is a foundation committed to the preservation and development of the Limburg landscape. The foundation works with more than 7,000 volunteers to keep the greenery in Limburg healthy and livable. Sabine de Jong (photo left below) is the project leader at Stichting IKL. “As a foundation, we want to become more active in the rural areas in North and Central Limburg. Our head office is in Nieuwstadt, deep in the southern part of the province. Being based in Venlo puts us right in the middle of the area where all these projects are. The campus was the ideal place for us because of the lively and positive atmosphere, the young companies, the educational programs and the students active there. Our goal as a foundation is to create a large green network where people and animals feel at home. We can't do this alone as IKL; we really need partners to help out. We hope to find these partners at the campus.”

The Impactfabriek: we facilitate impact!

De Impactfabriek (Impact Factory) supports organizations, government and entrepreneurs to make more impact with their projects, programs and meetings. This doesn’t involve traditional meetings with a speaker on a stage, but is about creating impact through creativity, language and energy. Our activities include teambuilding with Lego, musical training to improve communication, and tackling complex topics and problems via Open Space. Kim Hendriks (photo right above) is one of the founders of this agency with a staff of four. “We believe that you can make a change for the better when it’s done in an atmosphere characterized by relaxation and connection. Working (and being able to laugh) together produces the best results. We chose Venlo because the campus is full of companies that, like us, want to do things differently. They (and we) want to make the world a little more beautiful based on our conviction that things can and must be done differently!”

Vertical Rainforest: a vertical rainforest in the city

Ruud Derks and Twan van Hagen are the founders of Vertical Rainforest BV, a smart vertical garden that collects and buffers rainwater in a water unit. The first prototype is ready, and is equipped with sensors that measure temperature, humidity and air quality. The vertical rainforest even monitors weather conditions: when a peak downpour arrives, the garden is ready for it. Ruud and Twan are happy with their new workplace at Brightlands in Venlo. “The campus is a hotbed of innovativeness, and we fit in perfectly here with our new product. Our prototype has been given a spot at the campus. We make smart use of the knowledge available here and are already working with several companies based at the campus. Our hope is that the Vertical Rainforest will make cities greener, prettier and more sustainable.”

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