Soil Ninja aims to create high-quality, species-specific houseplant soils as well as tools, information and soil components to help houseplant hobbyists create blends that work their plants. The company – founded in 2019 – grew rapidly, but due to Brexit the company lost access to their customers in the EU. With a new production facility in Zwolle, The Netherlands, Soil Ninja has reopened to the EU market. Oost NL assisted the company with their location choice.
Soil Ninja is a company for plant enthusiasts, explains Jack Binns, co-founder: “We know non-native plants probably aren’t going to be in the most ideal conditions when we grow them in our homes so creating well balanced soil blend gives our plants a solid foundation to deal with some of the inconsistencies that being in homes as well as watering and nutrient schedules.”
The company grew rapidly in recent years, but due to Brexit it wasn’t cost effective to ship their products to their customers in the EU anymore. “Being able to establish the Netherlands has reopened the whole EU market allowing us to easily provide customers with high quality products without limitation. And being based in Overijssel has huge geographical, infrastructure and transport benefits. The high volume of clustered horticultural and agricultural business opens more opportunities for trade and collaboration,” says Binns.
Taking the plunge to East Netherlands
Marloes de Goeijen, advisor at Oost NL, assisted the company with their establishment in Zwolle. “We’re happy to welcome Soil Ninja and their enthusiastic team to the East Netherlands. In recent years we’ve helped several companies from the UK to set up shop in our region. We know what the specific challenges are and can advise companies in their search for a suitable location and relevant connections in the Netherlands to give them a soft landing in the region.”
That’s exactly what Soil Ninja did, adds co-founder Levent Latif-Maeer: “We found Oost NL while researching ways to make the process of exporting our products to the EU post Brexit. The team have helped us with our business plans, VISA submissions and even hosted a fact finding trip around East Netherlands to scout out warehouses prior to our move. It is a daunting task to set up a business in a country that isn’t your own, and without Oost NL we may not have ever taken the plunge!”
Eyes on the future
Now that Soil Ninja has established itself in Zwolle the company is looking forward to the future, says Binns: “We’ve already made some incredible connections across the region, the diversity of businesses and skills means we’ve been able to already build solid relationships with manufacturers, advertising agencies, independent influencers, transport and logistics specialists and so much more. For example, we’ve been able to partner with the fantastic houseplant wholesaler Javado based in Zuid-Holland.”