J&J Innovative Medicine Nederland

J&J Innovative Medicine Netherlands (formerly Janssen, Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson) approached Castro in the summer of 2023. The company asked if, in the run-up to the Lower House elections, we could organise an election activity around the theme of healthcare. In the end, in consultation with J&J and the other two clients (Amgen and MSD), the choice was made for an election debate. The organisation of the debate ended up being a co-production between Castro and New Balls Please Netherlands (our joint venture together with Belgian event organiser New Balls Please). Humberto Tan acted as debate leader and Frits Huffnagel as co-host. Participants included Fleur Agema (PVV), Mona Keijzer (BBB) and Sophie Hermans (VVD). Many thousands of guests watched live online via NPO found the recording and the debate so successful that the broadcaster broadcast the election debate many times until the elections on NPO Politics.The success of the debate in The Hague was repeated in April 2024 ahead of the European elections. In Brussels, Castro EU and New Balls Please organised another debate, this time with Frits Wester as debate leader. The list leaders of D66 and NSC participated, as well as directly-electable candidates from VVD and BBB. Once again, NPO broadcast the debate many times.

Koen Venekamp, Lead Government Affairs & Policy at Johnson & Johnson Innovative Medicine Netherlands:

“I experienced the partnership with Castro and New Balls Please as incredibly pleasant. It was a conscious choice, because they combine an excellent network in politics and media with a lot of experience in organising events and all the technology involved. Castro and New Balls Please do not settle for a six, they go for a top result and, as far as I am concerned, they succeeded.”