God, help me :-)

Love the picture below. O yeah, for the record, after a test by the Hercules Academy I’ve moved from being ENFJ to ENTJ and Inge moved from ENFP to ENTP. Close call, but it looks like the profiles match us more in this stage of our life. Guess we have to change our company from ENF United to ENT United now Smile  So God, help me slow downand not rushthroughwhatIdoAmen! (easy for you to say God, you’re not on a business tour around the world in 13 days)


Thanks for sharing this Koen Blanquart.

Sports for all: it really works!

A few weeks ago we marked another lifetime event in our young Herculean lives: the inaugural Hercules Trophy in New York was a big hit! Another proof that sports for all really works! We are now in Europe, Middle East, Africa and the US in only 2 years time.

305002_423650324358204_978859210_n[2]Fans from all over the world sent us very sweet personal messages saying they were amazed we pulled this off in only a few months time in one of the most difficult markets in the world. Even my mum was proud for a second Smile

Did we work hard? Oh yes! Is it hard to organize a good Hercules Trophy? Yeps, extremely. Did we have serious setbacks? Daily! Were we challenged by the Gods? O yeah baby. Do we have an awesome team? Yes we have (and Koen Blanquart: you are a rockstar!). Did we have amazing fans believing in us? Yes we did!

I’m always happy to be in the USA for a week. Especially in New York. So much energy, such an entrepreneurial spirit, such hard working people, so extremely hard to reach them, but once you get a chance to talk to them: they open their hearts and love to help you with your dream and make it their dream! In a few months time we made some “new best friends for ever”.

New York is one of those markets where business leaders understand why team sport is such a brilliant metaphor for everything that happens on the corporate work floor. That sport unites people. That sport doesn’t care about who you are. That you can do a lot of good through sports. That it’s a great networking opportunity. That you should bring supporters and kids to join you in all the fun. That it’s an investment and not a cost. In Dubai and Johannesburg we get the same messages. Wonder what the British did to get that message across. That’s probably one of the reasons why London was Olympic host for 3 times already.

A lot of of European business leaders still struggle with these statements, although we host more than 500 Hercules teams a year. In Europe, most people discovered corporate sports for individuals, but corporate teamsport is not generally accepted yet. Some still think that running the Ekiden with a few people or climbing the Mont Ventoux with colleagues is a team thing. No guys, these are corporate sporting events but they are not about teamwork, they are about individual achievements. Once you’ve participated in one of the Hercules Trophies, you’ll know what I’m talking about.

Wonder if we will take a break now? Who needs sleep when you are having fun? We are in full preparation mode for 2013. Our US Managing Director is here with us to discuss the future, this week we are in Dubai for the launch, Inge is in India in 2 weeks and I will be in Australia shortly. In the meantime we are working on mind-blowing new plans for Belgium and we’ll soon launch the South African edition. Hope to see you there.

Dreams come true

Press release

New York, June 23, 2011. Today, the City of New York and Hercules Trophy International have signed a contract to organize the first American Hercules Trophy on Randall’s Island, Manhattan. The signing of the contract was presided by His Royal Highness Prince Philippe, Crown Prince of Belgium. The first Hercules Trophy will be organized on July 12 2012 for more than 250 corporate teams in New York.

On June 23 2011, the City of New York Department of Parks & Recreation and Hercules Trophy have signed an agreement to organize the Hercules Trophy event at Randall’s Island (Manhattan). The contract has been signed during the Economic USA Mission of H.R.H. Crown Prince Philippe of Belgium.

Hercules Trophy is the fastest growing networked teambuilding competition in the world. The format has already revolutionized the event and teambuilding market in Europe and the Middle East and is now ready to conquer the American market. By the combination of competitive experiences, sports and entertainment on one day, Hercules Trophy builds a long-term team effect. The format actively promotes physical and mental fitness for business people. Everybody at the office with a basic physical condition, regardless of age, sex or weight can join the event, and even win the competition.

The first edition of the Hercules Trophy in the United States will attract 3,000 business men and women from New York, who are looking for a balance between work, sports, health and family.

“New York City was elected as the first City in the USA to organize a Hercules Trophy, for obvious reasons like the City’s attraction as a Metropolis, and the vibrant economic activities”, says Inge Van Belle, VP Sales and Co-Founder Hercules Trophy International. “But what most appealed to us, was New York’s impressive way to promote health and fitness programs amongst the citizens. We think that Hercules Trophy can have an added value to these programs by adding the “team” dimension to the existing offering.”

Koen Blanquart, CEO Hercules Trophy North America: “Randall’s Island came out as the best location to host the event, because of the central location, variety of sports facilities, festival atmosphere, and the similar values on sustainability and sports. We are very excited about our collaboration and will be happy to support the Randall’s Island Sports Foundation (RISF) in our CSR program.”

About Hercules Trophy
Founded in 1999 in Belgium, the Hercules Trophy is a super-charged inter-company sporting team day that builds camaraderie, embraces networking and promotes company loyalty. It has developed into the biggest and most anticipated international teambuilding and networking event in Europe, attracting more than 15,000 people from 500 companies to date. In addition to Belgium, Hercules Trophy events are also run in Spain, The Netherlands, UAE (Dubai), South Africa and Singapore. The United States, Germany and the UK are scheduled for launch in 2012.

Hercules Trophy was created by international entrepreneur Yves Vekemans and a group of corporate businessmen who cared about their people. They looked for a formula that would establish long lasting emotional connections between their employees. Recognizing that sport was a good means for getting people connected and working towards common goals, they created an inter-company challenge that today is the Hercules Trophy. Teams of 5 to 7 people participate in 12 ‘labours’ or sporting challenges with a fun twist. Each activity requires participants to think, act and perform as a team, and the emotional resonance created by the event continues at both the team and individual level long after the day. So successful is the outcome of Hercules Trophy that the event enjoys a 91% return rate every year.

About Randall’s Island
Randall’s Island has enjoyed the status of a shining star, one of Manhattan’s main recreation hubs, since the 1930s. Between 1934 and 2002, Downing Stadium served as home base for professional football and soccer teams, as well Olympic Trials and a plethora of music concerts. In 2004, Icahn Stadium replaced Downing as the island’s athletic headquarters, boasting a standard 400-meter Mondo surface running track, with 5,000 covered spectator seats and temporary seating available for up to 10,000 spectators. In addition to leisurely bike rides and scenic walks, Randall’s Island abounds in tennis, golf, soccer, and baseball leagues, programs, and fields, thanks in large part to the Randall’s Island Sports Foundation (RISF). Randall’s Island Sports Foundation was founded in 1992 as a public-private partnership to work on behalf of Randall’s Island Park, located in the East River between East Harlem, the South Bronx and Astoria, Queens. The Foundation, in conjunction with City leadership, works to realize the Island’s unique potential by developing sports and recreational facilities, restoring its vast natural environment, reclaiming and maintaining parkland, and sponsoring community-linked programs for the children of New York City.

Hercules Trophy North America Corp.
Koen Blanquart
+1 (646) 652 6216 koen.blanquart@hercules-trophy.com 110 Wall Street 11Floor New York, NY 10005-3817 www.herculestrophy.com
Randall’s Island Park
David Salerno Concessions and Events Manager Randall’s Island Park (212) 830-7713 David.Salerno@parks.nyc.gov http://www.randallsisland.org