What information does the Dutch Business Register contain?

The Business Register (Handelsregister) lists all businesses, legal entities, and other organisations that participate in economic transactions in the Netherlands. It is a public register, that is consulted millions of times per year. The register is important for legal certainty in trade. By consulting the register, you know who you are doing business with, who is allowed to sign on behalf of the company, and whether there are any bankruptcies.

What is in the Business Register?

KVK records several details, such as the name, contact data, and officers of the company. Each registration receives its unique KVK number. Most of the details are public, so that it is possible to verify if a company exists, who is liable, and where it is located. This is also true of deregistered companies and organisations, that may still be subject to liability and debt issues from the past. Some details can only be viewed by authorised persons, such as lawyers, notaries, court bailiffs, or judicial services. The Commercial Register Act (Handelsregisterwet, in Dutch) details which data are restricted.

The public information includes the following:

  • name of the company or organisation;
  • contact details, such as the address, telephone number, fax number, email address, and internet address;
  • details of branches;
  • officers and authorised signatories;
  • the insolvency practitioner, in case of bankruptcy;
  • the number of employees.

The UBO register is part of the Business Register. Since 22 November 2022, a ruling by the European Court of Justice has made the data temporarily non-public.

How do I find company information in the Business Register?

You can search for information in the Business Register by trade name, address or KVK number (only in Dutch). Searches are free of charge. If you want to order information, such as extracts or financial statements, costs are involved.

Unsolicited mailings or phone calls

The Business Register's main goal is to offer legal certainty. However, some companies and organisations use the details in the register for direct marketing purposes. This is the downside of public transparency. No one welcomes unsolicited mail or email, telesales phone calls, or door-to-door vendors. However, this is part of being an entrepreneur; and for some companies, this is the way to find new customers. If you want to limit the amount of unsolicited sales approaches, there are options. For instance, the non-mailing indicator, that limits physical mail and visits to your company address.

Private addresses in the Business Register

The private addresses of business owners and officers are registered in the Business Register. These addresses have not been public since 2008. For the eenmanszaak, vof, cv, and professional partnership, the private addresses of the owner, partners, and associates have not been public since 1 January 2022. Only employees of administrative bodies, lawyers, notaries, and bailiffs can view these data if they have authorisation to do so.

Read more about the disclosure of private addresses in the Business Register.