Minister for Nature and Nitrogen Policy, more precisely. That’s an official position in The Netherlands.
Her husband, Piet van der Wal is heir to Okke van de Wal and brother to Bouke van der Wal.
They are known for owning a massive supermarket chain called Boni, but few people know they are also massively invested in Picnic, huge groceries retailer in The Netherlands, about to expand in Germany too, as attested by the mainstream media RTL.
Even less people know is that…
Picnic directly buys from an existing supermarket chain (Boni), which saves them the operational costs on that side. Not having shops saves them big time on distribution and rent, which they can use to benefit consumers:
So whether you buy from Boni or Picnic, you buy from the Dutch Nitrogen Minister.
I can’t believe I just wrote this previous sentence and it’s legit too…
But, in September 2021, after pouring in about half a billion dollars, the lead investor in Picnic has become none other than Bill Gates. That kind of money buys you access to anything.
The exact amount that the Gates put down, is unknown. But they did provide the majority of the funds, CEO Michiel Muller says in an interview. The Gates Foundation was joined by previous investors in the Series D funding round, such as NPM Capital, De Hoge Dennen and Hoyberg.
As a result. Picnic jumps over Jumbo on Dutch online grocery market, with Jumbo controlling about 1/3 of the market just a few years prior.
They have been accused of violating several Dutch labor laws. The FNV said on Thursday it would take Picnic to court for refusing to pay staff according to the nationwide supermarket pay and conditions agreement (cao).
And this is not the first time Gates stuck his nose into Dutch food and agriculture.
DUTCH FOREIGN TRADE MINISTER AND BILL GATES DISCUSS COOPERATION BETWEEN THE NETHERLANDS AND GATES FOUNDATION
European Seed, April 30, 2018
Dutch Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Aid Sigrid Kaag met with Bill Gates, co-chairman of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation during the 2018 World Bank Spring Meetings in Washington DC. Bill Gates expressed his appreciation that the Dutch development budget is ‘going back in the right direction’. Both share the vision that the private sector can provide a key contribution to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. Further cooperation was discussed, such as in the areas of agriculture and health care.
The Netherlands and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation have been involved supporting industry benchmarking for sustainable development from the very start. The Access to Medicine Index was the first industry benchmark of this kind. As early as 2010, Bill Gates was the first to state that industry benchmarks should also be created for other industries to boost the private sector’s contribution to sustainable development and to give credit to companies that set an example.
Since then, the Access to Seeds Index as well as the Access to Nutrition Index were set up with support of both The Netherlands and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Currently the World Benchmarking Alliance is being set up, which will focus on developing new industry benchmarks tracking, disclosing and encouraging the contributions of various industries to achieving the SDGs.
GLOBAL CENTER ON ADAPTATION OPENS AN OFFICE IN BEIJING, CHINA
Dutch Water Sector. 28 June 2019
Dutch prime Minister Mark Rutte, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon announce the launch of the first regional office of the Global Center on Adaptation in China. The two countries have agreed to work closely together to accelerate action to make China and the region more resilient to the reality of the climate crisis on its fragile ecological environment.
Launched in 2018 the Global Center on Adaptation works to accelerate action and support for adaptation solutions, from the international to the local, from the public and private sector, to ensure we learn from each other and work together for a climate resilient future.
The Global Center on Adaptation is a Managing Partner of the Global Commission on Adaptation led by Ban Ki-moon, 8th Secretary-General of the United Nations, Bill Gates, co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and Kristalina Georgieva, CEO of the World Bank.
The GCA head office is based in The Netherlands.
More interesting connections to be revealed soon, stay tuned.