Meet Our Reseller: Hostnet

Hostnet offers hosting and domain services in the Netherlands

Like many hosting companies, Hostnet started small. But thanks to a continued focus on the needs of its customers and a long-standing commitment to innovative technology and superior customer support, Hostnet has grown to become one of the leading providers of hosting and domain services in the Netherlands.

The company was started in 1998 by a pair of students providing web-design services. Soon, they realized that they needed a more recurring revenue model upon which they could grow their business.

Providing hosting and domain (domeinnaam in dutch) registrations was the natural extension that served the needs both of existing customers and allowed them to expand their customer base.

“Hostnet started out as a small ISP, offering web-design and SEO services to go with them,” says Merijn de Brabander, Business Manager, Hostnet. “It only made sense to add hosting services and domain registrations, and at that point things really took off for the company.”

Hostnet: Hosting is a growing market.

It was about five years ago that Hostnet completely shifted the focus to hosting and business services and they have been growing quickly ever since. The company now boasts nearly 60 employees working out of an office overlooking the IJ river in Amsterdam serving hundreds of thousands of customers who run the gamut from individuals to small and mid-sized businesses.

Hostnet is regarded as a leader in the Dutch hosting space, offering a one-stop shop where customers can get online, create brand awareness and grow their business or personal online presence. Hostnet offers low-cost domains, hosting and other solutions aimed at Small and Medium Business including email, Hosted Exchange and SSL certificates. For Large and Enterprise customers Hostnet offers high performance hosting services like Virtual Private Servers and Dedicated Servers.

Hostnet and OpenSRS Long-time Partnership

Hostnet has been an OpenSRS domain reseller since 2000 and uses OpenSRS to power domain registrations and management for a large part of their domain portfolio with the exception of the larger european domain registrations (Hostnet are themselves a .nl, .eu and .be accredited registrar).

De Brabander says the partnership with OpenSRS has played a key role in the company’s growth.

“Working with OpenSRS for the last ten years has contributed to the improvement our services,” he says. “Also, we were very excited to hear that Thorsten Einig has joined OpenSRS and we look forward to an even closer relationship with OpenSRS.” [editors note: Thorsten Einig joined OpenSRS in October, 2010 as the Managing Director for Europe and is based in Amsterdam].

Hostnet Premium Hosting Support

With a customer base of small and mid-sized businesses, support is an important consideration. Hostnet offers a full helpdesk site with tutorials, FAQs and other resources to help their customers use the hosting an domain services. And they have a full customer support team to provide the enhanced level of customer support that their business base requires.

De Brabander says the company knows providing top-notch support is a must. “We try to stay on top of the customer support by constantly adding easy-to-use features to our website and our hosting and domain services, as well as improving the communications skills of our employees,” he says.

Ensuring the company is stocked with top talent is another way it stays in the lead in a very competitive environment. Hostnet recruits from nearby Delft University of Technology, one of the best engineering and technical schools in the country.

The company’s commitment to its employees starts the day they walk in the door. New employees will find a bicycle waiting for them on their first day–bikes being a common mode of transportation in the Netherlands.

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