Editor’s note: The Netherlands-American Chamber of Commerce Southeast, based in Atlanta, publishes a monthly interview spotlighting one of its members. This month, the organization caught up with Leontien Visser, owner of YEP — Your Expat Partner — a relocation firm that prioritizes personal service mainly to Europeans moving into the Atlanta metro area.
Netherlands-American Chamber: What is your business industry category or specialty?
Ms. Visser: I help expatriates and their families with their relocation to the USA. This saves time, money, prevents headaches and ensures a happy landing. I am specialized in moves to the greater Atlanta area.
How do you describe your job to people outside the industry?
When people move to a new country, not only their job, but their whole lives change. I help them with the personal and bureaucratic challenges. The service I offer is a package of pre-arrival, finding a home, settle in and after care support. I will keep in contact with the expatriates after the move and I am a local source of information for the first few months.
What are the biggest challenges?
My biggest challenge is to convince big companies what the advantages are of working with YEP, a small company, instead of working with bigger international relocation companies.
Who are your main competitors and what differentiates you from the competition?
My main competitors are international relocation companies. What people don’t realize is that their service is less personal and usually more costly. An international relocation company will contact their American partner, and this partner will hire a local realtor for a day or two. Their approach only addresses a part of what YEP offers. I work directly with the families and I am specialized in helping expats. For example, I know what documents they need to be able to sign a lease contract without having a social security number and address questions related to the school system. In short, I give independent, personal help based upon years of experience.
What makes you unique?
I am European. I speak their language and know the impact cultural differences can have on a family. I moved twice to the USA with my family. Based upon my experience, I am able to understand the expat’s wishes, needs and concerns. I know what challenges to overcome. In addition, I have seen, heard and learned a lot in my four years of being the president of the board of the Dutch school De Molenwiek here in Atlanta. I am happy I can share this experience and knowledge with my clients. My clients especially value my personal touch and my dedication.
How was the business started?
YEP was originally founded in 2010 by two Dutch expatriates. I took over the company in 2015 and am now the sole owner.
How many employees does the business have?
I am the only employee and use my connections to pull in expertise and people on a project by project basis. I work, for example, with a very reliable realtor who is specialized in rentals.
How did you end up in Atlanta?
I moved here nine years ago. My husband’s company was relocated here because of a better connection to Europe. Other pros for us were that Atlanta has an international environment, good educational options and the weather is still good. Before that we lived in Corpus Christi, Texas, for two years.
What is your number one business goal over the next year?
My goal is to continue making all my expats and their families happy! I also would like to “get my name out there” more and consolidate growth.
Any other personal information you would like to share, e.g. hobbies, special interests, family etc…
I like to help and meet new people. That is probably why I love the work that I do. I socialize and organize a lot, what started as a “borrel” for a small group of friends has now grown into a Friday evening borrel every other month for Dutch and Flemish people. I have three awesome kids and a husband; we love good food and family movie night at home. I like to be active. I jog, play tennis and do yoga. I am thankful for De Molenwiek to teach my children Dutch. Living so many years in the U.S., they prefer to speak English but they know how to read and speak their mother language.
Leontien Visser – Owner
Tel: (361) 510-3074