Do you know why we chose Manhattan, the birthplace of New York City success, and Heineken?
Can you imagine acquiring all of Manhattan for around $ 24? Today it is unthinkable, but it was possible about 400 years ago.
The success of the Netherlands East India Company (VOC) during the 17th century marked a turning point in global trade. Made up of equity-based capital from the Amsterdam Stock Exchange – coincidentally the first exchange to operate financial assets in history – the VOC became the first multinational corporation in the world and the first company to publicise its profits.
By 1669, the rise of the VOC was so splendid that its value was estimated between 7.2 and 8.28 trillion dollars in its current equivalent. In what position does that data leave today’s great leviathans like Apple, Amazon or Microsoft?!
The Dutch expeditions carried out by the VOC at the beginning of the century had resulted in the navigator Henry Hudson reaching the shores of present-day New York and starting trade along that route in 1609.
A few years later, specifically on 24th May 1626, the Dutch settler leader Peter Minuit bought Manhattan Island from the natives and settled there for about $24 at the time, which today would be equivalent to about $1000, although this payment is made with articles of interest to indigenous people valued at that amount. In this way, New Amsterdam was born, the first colony and capital of the New Netherlands, present-day New York.
Although the Dutch colony was conquered within a few years, it formed the foundations of The Big Apple and, today, its legacy can be seen in buildings such as those in the Harlem neighbourhood.
Centuries later, the Dutch reconquered their colony, but this time with a closer method: Heineken. Three days after the end of Prohibition in 1933 in the United States, Heineken landed in the port of New York with a whole ship full of quality beer. It supplied the city with happiness at the perfect moment, because after 13 years of being prohibited from drinking alcohol, the celebrations required cooling the throat with a drink at the level of the occasion. Thus, Heineken became the first imported beer available and its success skyrocketed. To this day, it remains one of the most successful import brands in the United States.
Heineken has its origins in Amsterdam, where Gerard Adriaan Heineken bought the Haystack brewery in 1864. Although the Dutch beer industry was facing a time of decline, Gerard triumphed among the capital’s artistic and intellectual elites with his own low-fermented beer. That was just the first of Heineken’s successes to date. At present, it is a reference brand in our social life for being a sponsor of our favourite sports such as football.
As you may have seen, behind a great city and a great brand connected to each other great stories are hidden. At Boxlite, we want those memorable stories to live close to you with our Manhattan and New York art collections.