More commonly known as Bernard J. Sleijster or Berrel, as lovingly named by his dear grandmother when he was a young boy, this dynamic entrepreneur was born in Amsterdam, the Netherlands in 1966. Currently Bernardus resides in Latin America, working as a consultant with a focus on clean technology and wellness related businesses, as well as managing his own charity for children in need.
Bernardus discovered his passion for marketing when he graduated from the School of Entrepreneurs in Amsterdam, after which he decided to pursue his interests further by taking some additional courses. This allowed him to dive deeper into the subject field and widen his expertise through more theoretical and practical work.
In the early nineties, Bernardus jump-started his career as an account manager for a Dutch stock broker firm, where he built up his skills and knowledge of the working world. Quick to learn and always eager to grow and expand, Bernardus didn’t wait long to start up his own business. After taking some time to travel, he set up an import/export and trading company and began giving marketing consultations to international companies worldwide.
After a few years, the real estate market sparked Berrel’s interest and he joined a Latin American based company, Isthmus Realty, which operated within the world-renowned Prudential Real Estate network. After several years of intensive travelling, he settled back in Europe and focused on the southern European property market until the financial crisis hit Europe. The crisis was especially hard in these areas, and the difficulties with the real estate market as well as hardships in refinancing his business, left Bernardus no other choice than to close this chapter of his life with a heavy heart.
From a young age, Bernardus Sleijster had a keen interest in boxing (even winning the district championship during his school years) and thanks to this, he learnt a valuable lesson that greatly helped him get through this tough time in his life – that it’s not about how often you get knocked down, but how many times you get back up again. He went back to what he did best – consulting local companies on marketing strategies and sales, helping them create structures for new business models and attract finances.
Bernardus’s recent activities evolve around rebranding and marketing strategies for mid-sized firms. Since the middle of 2014 his full focus went into supporting and advising on the creation of a marketing strategy of a renewable energy finance platform, cleantech and a global wellness & hospitality brand.
There are many things that Bernardus is passionate about, and he is excited to share with you his latest project that he has been anxious to set up for years – a personal foundation and charity for the less fortunate and children in need. The charity is called Sleijster4Children and currently focuses mainly on Central America, but knowing his personal drive and enthusiasm, it could grow and expand into new territories very soon. Bernardus set up this charity because it breaks his heart to see so many children in need of help and support, and through helping in any way he can, he hopes to make this world a safer and nicer place for everyone to live in, one child at a time.