As if nothing had happened, Gerard Sanderink returned this week as CEO of the IT company Centric. Justice wants him to resign. If this does not happen, the Chamber of Commerce will be summoned. “Only they can completely match Sanderink.”
Sanderink is a 100 percent shareholder in Centric and, as of this week, also ‘non-executive director and chairman of the board’ because he is unhappy with his company’s performance. The prosecution wants to intervene ‘in the public interest’.
Important for the Netherlands
“Centric is a company that does a lot for the Dutch government,” explains Angelique Kunst from the regional newspaper Tubantia. She has followed the Sanderink case closely for years and wrote a book about it: There is only one boss here.
The IT company Centric works for many public authorities such as municipalities, water boards and provinces. “This means that a lot of financial and personal data about all Dutch people is in the company’s systems. And you want those systems to be properly secured, that they are in the hands of a company that functions correctly. And that is not the case. now.”
Argument with ex-boyfriend
Sanderink has been involved in various lawsuits with his ex-girlfriend Brigitte van Egten for years. The arguments became so loud that Sanderink’s most important companies, including Centric, are affected.
He stopped directing at the beginning of 2021, but according to Kunst, he continued to pull the strings behind the scenes. “He is still 100 percent shareholder, and in his case that means who pays,” says Kunst.
Restlessness by Rian van Rijbroek
Since 2019, directors and executives have left Centric all the time or were forced to leave. The source of the unrest is the involvement of Rian van Rijbroek. Self-proclaimed cyber expert and Sanderink’s girlfriend. She would make important decisions about his businesses in the background. Art: “She manages his email accounts and whispers to him every day who is good and who is not good and what to do.”
Van Rijbroek was discredited after a broadcast by Nieuwsuur in 2018. She pretended to be a cyber security expert. But several experts said after the broadcast that what she said was nonsense. Also the book she wrote A world of cyber security and cyber crime had to be withdrawn from the market for plagiarism.
‘If he does not resign voluntarily, he will be sidelined’
The prosecution has been working for months to bring peace back to the IT company. If Sanderink does not resign, the Business Section will be summoned and Sanderink may be suspended. Art does not know if the driver is leaving voluntarily. “Maybe he thinks it’s wise to pick eggs for his money, because if he resigns voluntarily, he’ll have just a little more credit than if he’s pushed aside.”
According to journalist and writer Kunst, the Chamber of Commerce is the only one that has the power to fully equate Sanderink. “They can take away his voting rights as a shareholder and put a director there who can go his own way and not have to listen to the shareholder.”
‘The company is not doing well’
According to Kunst, this is the only way to turn the IT company Centric back into a stable company. “Then you have 100 percent guarantee and security. You can put everyone there in a top position or become CEO, but the moment the person is there, Sanderink is next to him and he will tell you exactly what to do. So as long as if you let Sanderink keep control of the company, he’ll fire anyone who does something he doesn’t like.”
More and more customers are now losing confidence in the company: “I hear from all sides that non-government customers are canceling their contracts. The chip maker ASML announced last week that they no longer want to cooperate with Centric. The company is not doing well. . Customers are aware that the company’s data is not safe there.”