Nexxworks welcomes Upgrade Estate Founders Nele Van Damme & Koenraad Belsack as Partners May 3, 2021

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We’re excited to announce that long-time customers and Founders of connected housing company Upgrade Estate, Nele Van Damme and Koenraad Belsack are teaming up with nexxworks as Business Partners. Nele will take up an active advisory role and Koenraad will be joining our Board of Directors as Chairman.

On top of that, nexxworks has also been investing in expanding its internal network of team members, welcoming Sofie Kegels (ex-Deloitte) as Business Development Manager and Carlo D'Agnolo (ex-Lancio) as Digital Marketing Expert.

Kindred spirits

The synergy between nexxworks and Upgrade Estate should not come as a surprise, seeing that Nele and Koenraad are long-time customers and both companies have always had the habit of seeking to collaborate on the future of their customers and other stakeholders. An example is the ‘What’s Up Nexxt’ project: collaborative trend events for their shared networks. And since April 2020, the nexxworks team has also been residing in the Upgrade Academy building, bringing both closer together than ever.

“Nexxworks was founded on the principle of ‘The Network Always Wins’ and right from the start of our interaction with Nele and Koenraad, it was clear that this was one of the most ecosystem-driven companies we ever met”, says nexxworks CEO Julie Vens-De Vos about their compatibility. “They are not just a building company. Every project of theirs has a human sidetrack, like their student coaches or the Upgrade Academy for their stakeholders. Add to that their incredible innovation mindset, continuous entrepreneurial drive and daring long-term outlook, and it should be clear why our companies are such a great match.”

“The high-level vision of the international nexxworks thought leaders and their innovation network is furthermore completely compatible with the down-to-earth local entrepreneurial experience from the Upgrade Estate ecosystem”, says Koenraad Belsack. “What’s more, both of our organizations strive to achieve business and social impact in an almost obsessive manner, which has always brought us together”, Nele Van Damme adds. “We’re really excited and looking forward to the serendipitous synergies that will come out of this”, concludes Julie.

About Upgrade Estate

Upgrade Estate realizes and manages connective housing for students and young professionals and has an unrivalled ability to respond to the needs of these target groups. Its integrated management makes it clear what they stand for as a business: attractive shared spaces, greenery, excellent value for money, convenience for both tenant and investor and a ‘living coach’ as a connecting factor. This gives more than 2500 tenants the 'time of their lives' in their projects.

About nexxworks

Nexxworks inspires and connects innovators all over the world. We help organizations kickstart their innovation – through our many innovation programs – by confronting them with the latest evolutions in business and technology and by encouraging them to combine a long-term vision with short-term initiatives. Our thought-leading community of innovation keynote speakers Raya Bidshahri, Pascal Coppens, Jessica Groopman, Peter Hinssen, Jerry Michalski, Nancy Rademaker, April Rinne, Steven Van Belleghem and Rik Vera is the beating heart of our network.

Our customers are local and international innovation-thirsty profiles, who are eager to uncover the exciting business possibilities that come with exponential change and (technology) disruption. To help and inspire them, we collaborate with a very diverse ecosystem of renowned thought-leaders, disruptive start-ups, C-level corporate pioneers, experts, academics, investors, consultants and highly innovative entrepreneurs.