Aeternus-squareAareon Nederland takes over Square DMS Groep in Grathem

‘Focus on what’s realistic and don’t try to achieve the impossible!’

Thanks to its unique document management system Square Document Management Systems conquered a solid position in the Dutch and Belgian real estate market. The recent takeover by Aaeron Nederland will offer the Grathem-based company opportunities for international growth. Read on for the story of how a passionate military man discovered the business world and embarked on an entirely new mission.

‘After eleven years as a non-commissioned officer in the military service I decided try my hand at business. The business world was entirely new to me, but the knowledge and experience I gained in the military helped my turn my dreams into tangible successes. I founded Square Document Management Systems together with Ron Janssen and Gerd van der Slik in 1998. We transform hard copy into digital information that is accessible to all parties involved, no matter where they are and on a 24/7 basis.’

Serious note

‘Square DMS was a success in the real estate market from the very start. Ninety per cent of our clients are housing corporations. Our Enterprise Content Management (ECM) software soon gave us a solid position on the market and our customer base soon propelled us towards a nation-wide cover. Our ECM solutions are currently used to manage the data relevant to over 650,000 lettable units. This success did not remain unnoticed. In the past few years, companies regularly knocked on our door, so to speak, but when Aareon Nederland approached us this struck a more serious note.’


‘Aareon is the market leader in Western Europe in the field of automation for the real estate sector. Collaboration with Aareon enables us to respond to European developments and put new services and products on the market much faster. Although our businesses are complementary and our corporate cultures are similar, this did not make the takeover any easier. First you say “Yes, let’s do it; let’s jump off the deep end and see if we can swim”.  At that stage, however, you have no idea of the complexity involved. Aeternus guided us through the entire takeover process as a professional sparring partner and director. A takeover process is so complex that a clearly visible marching route would not be a bad idea!’

Heart and soul

‘We aim to offer our staff and clients continuity. The takeover by Aaeron will enable us to guarantee this continuity. Square DMS will retain its autonomous role on the Dutch and Belgian market after the takeover. As the management team, we will continue to put our heart and soul into the company for the next few years to come. Our first goal is to achieve a successful integration. What will become our long-term personal mission? As an entrepreneur, it’s wonderful to dream. However, you must focus on what’s realistic and not try to achieve the impossible.’

Photo by: Leon Heber