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Digital transformation

Executive Search

Successful story of:

 

Picturae

Facts and figures

  • 1997 Founded in
  • Digitalise Heritage collections
  • Karmijn Kapitaal Part of

Question.

Picturae

Picturae is the international market leader when it comes to the digitalisation, storage, management and making accessible of heritage collections such as but not limited to herbaria, manuscripts, photos, books and audio. By digitalising heritage collections and thus enriching them, Picturae contributes to the global accessibility, the growth of knowledge, and to maintaining this for future generations. PIcturae has great international and national clients such as the City Archives Amsterdam, MoMa, UNESCO, Smithsonian Institution, The Frick Collection and the Van Gogh museum.

The products and services offered by Picturae can broadly be divided into three categories. Firstly, the digitalisation of collections. Once the products and content have been digitalised, Picturae offers the possibility to store this content and data and to make it digitally available. Thirdly, they offer software to manage collections which means that clients can manage and publish their collections themselves.

There are currently around 140 people working at Picturae. Aside from its headquarters in Heerhugowaard, Picturae also has a branch in New York and has recently opened a branch in Berlin.

In 2018, Karmijn Kapitaal took over Picturae from its former shareholders. Bruno Giebels was appointed as CEO in 2020 to make a turnaround happen, which resulted in a positive EBITDA in 2021 and in a positive outlook for the coming years. Picturae wants to transform from a digital project organisation into an SaaS organisation in which clients can use Picturae’s software as a service. This demands a change of business model, a change in the way the organisation is structured etc.

To help shape this transition, Picturae went looking for a Director Product & IT, in a fixed and in an interim construction.

To keep the team and the business running well and to be able to make the first steps for the desired transformation a reality, an interim Director Product & IT is first hired. The person hired on an interim basis already lays the foundation and helps give shape to the permanent position.


Solution.

Tristan Teunissen came to strengthen Picturae’s management team in March 2022, in the new role of Director Product & IT ad interim. Aside from the daily management of the IT & Product organisation, being the quartermaster and a business transformation specialist, he laid the foundation for the person coming to fill the fixed position. In conjunction with Picturae, he developed the strategy and set course to a scalable product and a customer-centric organisation. In this, the goal is to make sustainable commercial growth a reality, and to do this, the pragmatic and entrepreneurial character of the organisation have been well-examined.

Bas Blokpoel started in the permanent position of Director Product & IT halfway through November 2022. His goal is to keep developing and executing the Product and Tech strategy and roadmap based on Picturae’s overall strategy. Aside from this he is also responsible for:

  • Creating the model whereby product development happens based on customer needs and whereby a scalable product is built instead of a customised product where possible;
  • Gaining an insight into the pricing of various products and propositions or the development of these, with the goal of achieving an improved pricing strategy and being able to put the products on the market in a better, more commercial way;
  • Leading the Product & IT team and ensuring this keeps developing. This team is responsible for software development that digitalises collections, storage for collections and the development and management of websites where there are digital exhibitions of these collections.

Building SaaS products, teams and organisations. He thinks in solutions and always has high levels of energy.

Building SaaS products, teams and organisations. He thinks in solutions and always has high levels of energy.

Bas has experience in a B2B environment and with platform business (SaaS) models and is also experienced in drawing up a roadmap to execute the product and tech vision. He has a track record in leading technology and product teams. Bas is a strategic thinker, combined with a strong focus on execution. He looks for the pragmatic short-term solution that fits with the long-term strategy.

Bas is an outside-in thinker that places the customer at the heart of what they do, uses data and shapes Picturae’s ecosystem and when it comes to growth, understands the dynamic of an international MKB organisation in a private equity environment. Bas fits in the culture of Picturae and complements the Board/Management team.

Leadership

Connector

The leadership most suited for success in this phase is characterized by:

  • Bridge-builder
  • Evangelist & change agent – creating urgency to keep moving and the business
  • Someone who goes through walls
  • Outside-in thinker, putting the customer first and using data
  • Power of execution (think big, act small)
  • Test & Learn – you can make mistakes
  • Commitment to agility and multidisciplinarity
  • Stakeholder management – between evangelist and urgency is relevance, ambassadors breeding / recognizing and deploying
Look at our leadership model

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