Van Leeuwen
Steel construction revolves around frequent customer contact

Steel construction revolves around frequent customer contact

Anton OverduinAnton Overduin,
Van Leeuwen Pipe and Tube, Zwijndrecht

Our customers come to us with all sorts of requests: from small quantities of tubes from our stock to large tonnages of tube material for new development projects. Customer demands, in other words, are never the same. In order to meet these demands, we combine an extensive and relevant stock with an international network of steel mills where we place our orders directly. This makes us the ideal partner for our customers in steel construction. Furthermore, we are able to respond quickly to every customer need. In order to map those needs, we are in constant contact with the customer.

Few job hoppers

Van Leeuwen is known for the knowledge and skills that we acquired over the years. We celebrate our 95th anniversary this year and many of our employees have been with us for a long time. Because there are only a few job hoppers at Van Leeuwen, knowledge rarely leaves the company. New employees are guided by experienced colleagues and have the opportunity to follow courses and workshops, for instance in material knowledge. This teaches them quickly and informally how to assist and advice our customers.

The only specialist

We are the only specialist in the area of tube trade in the Netherlands, offering a very wide and deep range of tubes, with circular, square and rectangular profiles. This wide range of products allows us to sell to many different branches. To our customers in steel construction we often sell from stock. When quoting for large projects, we deal with our mills directly. This ensures fast and flexible transactions. Many of our tubes are manufactured in the Netherlands, but they also originate from other European countries and even from other continents.

Besides supplying the tubes, we also offer additional services like cutting, shotblasting, painting, galvanizing and coating. Finally, we offer room in our warehouses to store customer and project related stock.


In many projects like public transport stations, distribution centers and sports stadiums, our tubes are quite visible. Brainport Eindhoven, Distribution center New Logic III, Schiphol airport and Royal van Lent are just a few examples which feature tubes from Van Leeuwen. Architects like to use tubes for visible constructions because of their closed, aesthetically pleasing form. Hidden parts of the construction usually feature open profiles or beams.

Steel construction is on the move

In general, the steel market can be considered to be fairly conservative. In fact, our tubes are almost identical to those we sold a decade ago. However, there are significant changes in the many applications of steel. The number of projects which require large quantities of steel is currently growing. Take for instance the construction of large distribution centers in the food and non-food sector. Furthermore, steel is increasingly applied in circular construction projects because it is 100% recyclable and even upcyclable. In other words, used steel can be turned into new steel, even of higher quality than it was. Another benefit of steel constructions is the ease with which they are disassembled and rebuilt at a different location. This is why you increasingly see temporary constructions throughout cities, like the temporary courthouse in Amsterdam. As a result, the drive towards sustainable building means more steel is applied in general, which in turn increases the demand for steel tubes.

We also notice a slight change in the daily stock sales (order today, deliver tomorrow). The Internet made the world more transparent, thereby making it easier to compare products. Customer relations have become more rational as a result.

Frequent customer contact

We join forces with different disciplines in the organization to make each customer request a success. That’s what keeps this job interesting and dynamic. In order to be successful, frequent customer contact is essential, whether by phone, e-mail or at the customer’s desk. We highly value “customer intimacy” and use these moments to translate a client’s wish into an optimal solution, customized to their needs.

We set ourselves apart from the competition by focusing on swift transactions. After a quotation has been sent, we regularly keep in touch with our customer. There is stiff competition in this market and a proactive mindset makes the difference between success and failure. It is absolutely necessary to know which projects are upcoming and which customers are involved. We keep a close watch on all market developments and broaden our knowledge whenever possible. You can’t predict success. You have to prove your worth every time. That’s what keeps you sharp!



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