Looking back on an eventful year with CFO Bastian Bouwsema


Many companies look back at the end of the year, are busy with plans and budgets. Bastian Bouwsema, especially because of his position as Financial Director, is no exception. What did his 2020 look like, what did it bring, despite the corona crisis, and how does he see the future of Cr8las Group?

Who is Bastian?

Armed with a vwo diploma, Bastian first followed the Commercial Economics course at the University of Applied Sciences. A conscious choice because, according to Bastian, he wanted to operate in the labor market himself. Nevertheless, he decided to develop himself further after that. In 2011 he successfully completed the study Business Administration at Radboud University. He started his career as Account Manager at Inalfa Roof Systems Group (Venray) and worked until Cr8las came his way, at Franke (Helmond) as Account Manager Germany and Benelux.

Bastian as CFO at Cr8las Group

The management of Cr8las (Coen Litjens, CEO and Ruud Custers CCO) needed a third colleague who would further professionalize the organization and at the same time take care of the financial aspect. Bastian: “I was immediately excited, it clicked right away. I saw the great challenge at this wonderful company, with a lot of specialist knowledge and large national and international clients, as a great opportunity. Cr8las has grown explosively due to its enormous customer focus, identifying expectations and living up to them together with the incessantly involved employees. And still is! We go to extremes for our clients, we keep searching until we have found the right solution. We produce very accurately, think along with our clients and deliver the right people for the right jobs. Employees work with us effortlessly, regardless of the project or location”.

Looking back at 2020

As a result of continued growth, further structuring became increasingly important. It was time to work on instead of for Cr8las. Bastian: “We are in the process of recording crucial business processes and at the same time translating them into up-to-date procedures, work instructions and job descriptions. Since its inception 10 years ago, we just haven’t been able to make time for it. We have grown from a one-person company to an organization with 75 skilled employees. We serve customers all over the world from either our own workshop or on location. What also grew was the need for structure and clarity. Who does what, how or why. That is why we decided to make room for a thorough analysis and description of processes. With these process analyses and descriptions, we avoid grey areas while responsibilities and working methods become clear. In this way we can guarantee continuity even better and also create space and possibilities to work on our future and ambitions.  We are a relatively young club and want our employees to be able to (co-)develop continuously. We believe in continuous development and professionalization of the organization and our people. Working together to build the future of Cr8las and of our customers, because process thinking is also customer thinking as far as we are concerned”.

Future Cr8las

Bastian: “There is no way around it, because of corona assignments at national and international locations could no longer be carried out and companies started to spend less and less. Also from a financial point of view it was difficult to manage the uncertainties. It demanded a lot, from all of us by the way. Thanks, among other things, to our company wide no-nonsense corporate culture, we were able to limit losses and even reduce them somewhat. The trend for 2021 is absolutely positive. We are looking forward to it!

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