Gilbert Curtessi

Gilbert Curtessi

Biography Gilbert Curtessi
Strategy, Environment & Business Development

I come up with ideas about ecology, sustainability and innovation and always ask myself can we really do this. Is this really possible, that is the question!

After studying environmental geography i started working for the municipality of Rotterdam (Rotterdam City development Corporation) followed by the department of strategy at the Port of Rotterdam N.V. My work fields were renewable energy, recycling and agrification of Industrial Port systems.  

In 2004 i decided to put theory into practice. Inspired by a handful of entrepreneurs that changed the world and really made a difference we took off in good times. The company and my claim to fame was the super innovative and delicious “Happy Shrimp”, which was farmed on the Maasvlakte in tropical basins, heated with residual energy. It is still perceived as a great idea and has become a part of my life. I owe a lot to all the people that have contributed to this project and made me realize that real sustainability and innovation are hard nuts to crack. 

Recently Abu Dhabi state authority invited me to give a presentation at the Global Forum for Innovation and Agriculture about agro-energy clusters. Zero gravity, a company working for the NASA asked me to write a proposal for Shrimp farming in the ISS Space Shrimp, 5 years after the company stopped, it still is innovative and good idea. :) This eco Industrial concept attracted attention and follow-up in various countries based on the theory and practice. In my opinion this makes ideas valuable.

The most remarkable learning experience is that nothing appears to be real in the "green industry". Effectiveness, technical or economical yields are often generated by subsidies and (sometimes false) incentives. Investments in the green sector worldwide collapsed (for a while) and the actual operating results of green companies were small and quit disappointing. Why is this the situation and what can we do, is there a growing criticism towards the green industry, Why is media attention for green businesses huge and can you organize this, why is a sustainable niche market relatively easy to organize and it is very difficult to successfully approach a mainstream market with an environmentally friendly product or service? These are my question as an business developer and researcher. 

Since 2012 I am active as Business Development Director at Transmare BV a 60 year old Rotterdam family company in the chemical industry which is reforming itself into a bio-based chemical company. My current activities are developing mobile biomass factories in Asia and the Middle East and the development and production of bamboo compound applications. With the use of bio-plastic as a raw material for high quality products. At various plantations and ports in Asia, activities are developed to optimize the management of the value chain for sustainable biomass. 

In my definition, Business Development means being creative, taking responsibility and being able to connect people in teams and bio-technology into products.



  • Perspectieven op, CSR Academy van Gorcum, 2012, ISBN 978 90 232 4987 0
  • Rotterdam 2040, Trichis publishing by Gyz La Riviere 2011 ISBN 978-9490608-15-6
  • Waste heat feasibility study in the port of Rotterdam, 2006 ISBN 90-5059-303-8
  • Breekwater, opportunity mapping at the Breekwater site, 2008 ISBN 90-5059-311-9


  • Nominated Dutch excellence award 2009, stichting NIMA, Utrecht
  • Nominated Dutch / German economy award, 2008 NDHK, Den Haag
  • Ketel Binkie innovation & entrepreneurship award, 2007, Rotterdam
  • Social Venturing Award, RSM, 2006 Erasmus University, Rotterdam
  • KIVI NIRIA / New Venture innovation-award, 2005, Naarden

Workshops and presentations at the following clients:

Municipality of Rotterdam, Municipality of Amsterdam, Municipality of Schiedam, Ministry of Economic Affairs, Ministry of Agriculture, Euroforum, Business School Nyenrode, Rotterdam School of Management, Cap Gemini, HVC, Solvay, HAS Den Bosch, Innovation Network, TransForum, Reed Elsevier's conferences, UPC, E.ON Benelux, Radboud University, World Aquaculture Society, M.Sc course Industrial Ecology, VVD, Cradle 2 Cradle Congress, Oxxio, IMD MBA Business Festival Rotterdam, Innovating Metropolitan Agriculture, St. Bioport, the Veer Foundation, Castle Donk / Nassau Assurances, Rotterdam Climate Initiative, The Hague Entrepreneurs Association, Made in Holland, KPN (Hypo days), ABN AMRO - New Venture, ING - New Venture, McKinsey & Company - New Venture, Princeton University, Economy, Ecology & Technology conference, Greentech International, Industrial crops and products, IPC/APEX Conference USA, Senter-Novem.

Contact information

Gilbert Curtessi
Transmare / EnergyTransformers BV
Business development Director
Meent 93c
3011 JG Rotterdam

Phone number: +31(0)10 206 1666
Mobile: +31(0)6 50615462