Dutch East India Company
|Type||Publicly traded company|
|Founded||20 March 1602 by a government-directed amalgamation of the voorcompagnieën/pre-companies,|
|Founder||Johan van Oldenbarnevelt and the States-General|
|Defunct||31 December 1799|
|Products||Spices, silk, porcelain, metals, livestock, tea, grain, rice, soybeans, sugarcane, wine, coffee|
The Dutch East India Company, officially the United East India Company (Dutch: Vereenigde Oostindische Compagnie; VOC; Indonesian: Kompeni), was a megacorporation founded by a government-directed amalgamation of several rival Dutch trading companies (voorcompagnieën) in the early 17th century. It was established on 20 March 1602, as a chartered company to trade with Mughal India[disputed ] in the early modern period, from which 50% of textiles and 80% of silks were imported, chiefly from its most developed region known as Bengal Subah. In addition, the company traded with Indianised Southeast Asian countries when the Dutch government granted it a 21-year monopoly on the Dutch spice trade.
The company has been often labelled a trading company (i.e. a company of merchants who buy and sell goods produced by other people) or sometimes a shipping company. However, the VOC was in fact an early-modern corporate model of vertically integrated global supply chain and a proto-conglomerate, diversifying into multiple commercial and industrial activities such as international trade (especially intra-Asian trade), shipbuilding, and both production and trade of East Indian spices, Indonesian coffee, Formosan sugarcane, and South African wine. The company was a transcontinental employer and a corporate pioneer of outward foreign direct investment at the dawn of modern capitalism. In the early 1600s, by widely issuing bonds and shares of stock to the general public,[f] VOC became the world's first formally listed public company.[g][h]
With its pioneering institutional innovations and powerful roles in global business history, the company is often considered by many to be the forerunner of modern corporations. In many respects, modern-day corporations are all the 'direct descendants' of the VOC model. It was its 17th-century institutional innovations and business practices that laid the foundations for the rise of giant global corporations in subsequent centuries – as a highly significant and formidable socio-politico-economic force of the modern-day world – to become the dominant factor in almost all economic systems today. It also served as the direct model for the organisational reconstruction of the English/British East India Company in 1657. The company, for nearly 200 years of its existence (1602–1800), had effectively transformed itself from a corporate entity into a state or an empire in its own right.[i] One of the most influential and extensively researched business enterprises in history, the VOC's world has been the subject of a vast amount of literature that includes both fiction and nonfiction works.
The company was historically an exemplary company-state[j] rather than a pure for-profit corporation. Originally a government-backed military-commercial enterprise, the VOC was the wartime brainchild of leading Dutch republican statesman Johan van Oldenbarnevelt and the States-General. From its inception in 1602, the company was not only a commercial enterprise but also effectively an instrument of war in the young Dutch Republic's revolutionary global war against the powerful Spanish Empire and Iberian Union (1579–1648). In 1619, the company forcibly established a central position in the Javanese city of Jayakarta, changing the name to Batavia (modern-day Jakarta). Over the next two centuries the company acquired additional ports as trading bases and safeguarded their interests by taking over surrounding territory. To guarantee its supply, the company established positions in many countries and became an early pioneer of outward foreign direct investment.[k] In its foreign colonies, the VOC possessed quasi-governmental powers, including the ability to wage war, imprison and execute convicts, negotiate treaties, strike its own coins, and establish colonies. With increasing importance of foreign posts, the company is often considered the world's first true transnational corporation.[l] Along with the Dutch West India Company (WIC/GWIC), the VOC was seen as the international arm of the Dutch Republic and the symbolic power of the Dutch Empire. To further its trade routes, the VOC-funded exploratory voyages, such as those led by Willem Janszoon (Duyfken), Henry Hudson (Halve Maen), and Abel Tasman, revealed largely unknown landmasses to the western world. In the Golden Age of Netherlandish cartography (c. 1570s–1670s), VOC navigators and cartographers helped shape geographical knowledge of the world as we know it today.
Socio-economic changes in Europe, the shift in power balance, and less successful financial management resulted in a slow decline of the VOC between 1720 and 1799. After the financially disastrous Fourth Anglo-Dutch War (1780–1784), the company was nationalised in 1796, and finally dissolved on 31 December 1799. All assets were taken over by the government with VOC territories becoming Dutch government colonies.
Company name, logo, and flag
In Dutch, the name of the company is Vereenigde Oostindische Compagnie or Verenigde Oost-Indische Compagnie, literally the "United East Indian Company", which is abbreviated to VOC. The company's monogram logo was possibly the first globally recognised corporate logo. The logo of the VOC consisted of a large capital 'V' with an O on the left and a C on the right leg. It appeared on various corporate items, such as cannons and coins. The first letter of the hometown of the chamber conducting the operation was placed on top . The monogram, versatility, flexibility, clarity, simplicity, symmetry, timelessness, and symbolism are considered notable characteristics of the VOC's professionally designed logo. Those elements ensured its success at a time when the concept of the corporate identity was virtually unknown. An Australian vintner has used the VOC logo since the late 20th century, having re-registered the company's name for the purpose. The flag of the company was red, white, and blue, with the company logo embroidered on it.
Around the world, and especially in English-speaking countries, the VOC is widely known as the 'Dutch East India Company'. The name 'Dutch East India Company' is used to make a distinction from the [British] East India Company (EIC) and other East Indian companies (such as the Danish East India Company, French East India Company, Portuguese East India Company, and the Swedish East India Company). The company's alternative names that have been used include the 'Dutch East Indies Company', 'United East India Company', 'United East Indian Company', 'United East Indies Company', 'Jan Company', or 'Jan Compagnie'.
Before the Dutch Revolt, Antwerp had played an important role as a distribution centre in northern Europe. After 1591, however, the Portuguese used an international syndicate of the German Fuggers and Welsers, and Spanish and Italian firms, that used Hamburg as the northern staple port to distribute their goods, thereby cutting Dutch merchants out of the trade. At the same time, the Portuguese trade system was unable to increase supply to satisfy growing demand, in particular the demand for pepper. Demand for spices was relatively inelastic; therefore, each lag in the supply of pepper caused a sharp rise in pepper prices.
In 1580, the Portuguese crown was united in a personal union with the Spanish crown, with which the Dutch Republic was at war. The Portuguese Empire therefore became an appropriate target for Dutch military incursions. These factors motivated Dutch merchants to enter the intercontinental spice trade themselves. Further, a number of Dutchmen like Jan Huyghen van Linschoten and Cornelis de Houtman obtained first hand knowledge of the "secret" Portuguese trade routes and practices, thereby providing opportunity.
The stage was thus set for the four-ship exploratory expedition by Frederick de Houtman in 1595 to Banten, the main pepper port of West Java, where they clashed with both the Portuguese and indigenous Javanese. Houtman's expedition then sailed east along the north coast of Java, losing twelve crew members to a Javanese attack at Sidayu and killing a local ruler in Madura. Half the crew were lost before the expedition made it back to the Netherlands the following year, but with enough spices to make a considerable profit.
In 1598, an increasing number of fleets were sent out by competing merchant groups from around the Netherlands. Some fleets were lost, but most were successful, with some voyages producing high profits. In March 1599, a fleet of eight ships under Jacob van Neck was the first Dutch fleet to reach the 'Spice Islands' of Maluku, the source of pepper, cutting out the Javanese middlemen. The ships returned to Europe in 1599 and 1600 and the expedition made a 400 percent profit.
In 1600, the Dutch joined forces with the Muslim Hituese on Ambon Island in an anti-Portuguese alliance, in return for which the Dutch were given the sole right to purchase spices from Hitu. Dutch control of Ambon was achieved when the Portuguese surrendered their fort in Ambon to the Dutch-Hituese alliance. In 1613, the Dutch expelled the Portuguese from their Solor fort, but a subsequent Portuguese attack led to a second change of hands; following this second reoccupation, the Dutch once again captured Solor in 1636.
East of Solor, on the island of Timor, Dutch advances were halted by an autonomous and powerful group of Portuguese Eurasians called the Topasses. They remained in control of the Sandalwood trade and their resistance lasted throughout the 17th and 18th centuries, causing Portuguese Timor to remain under the Portuguese sphere of control.
At the time, it was customary for a company to be funded only for the duration of a single voyage and to be liquidated upon the return of the fleet. Investment in these expeditions was a very high-risk venture, not only because of the usual dangers of piracy, disease and shipwreck, but also because the interplay of inelastic demand and relatively elastic supply of spices could make prices tumble, thereby ruining prospects of profitability. To manage such risk, the forming of a cartel to control supply would seem logical. In 1600, the English were the first to adopt this approach by bundling their resources into a monopoly enterprise, the English East India Company, thereby threatening their Dutch competitors with ruin.
In 1602, the Dutch government followed suit, sponsoring the creation of a single "United East Indies Company" that was also granted monopoly over the Asian trade. For a time in the seventeenth century, it was able to monopolise the trade in nutmeg, mace, and cloves and to sell these spices across European kingdoms and emperor Akbar the Great's Mughal Empire at 14-17 times the price it paid in Indonesia; while Dutch profits soared, the local economy of the Spice Islands was destroyed. With a capital of 6,440,200 guilders, the new company's charter empowered it to build forts, maintain armies, and conclude treaties with Asian rulers. It provided for a venture that would continue for 21 years, with a financial accounting only at the end of each decade.
In February 1603, the company seized the Santa Catarina, a 1500-ton Portuguese merchant carrack, off the coast of Singapore. She was such a rich prize that her sale proceeds increased the capital of the VOC by more than 50%.
Also in 1603, the first permanent Dutch trading post in Indonesia was established in Banten, West Java, and in 1611, another was established at Jayakarta (later "Batavia" and then "Jakarta"). In 1610, the VOC established the post of Governor General to more firmly control their affairs in Asia. To advise and control the risk of despotic Governors General, a Council of the Indies (Raad van Indië) was created. The Governor General effectively became the main administrator of the VOC's activities in Asia, although the Heeren XVII, a body of 17 shareholders representing different chambers, continued to officially have overall control.
VOC headquarters were located in Ambon during the tenures of the first three Governors General (1610–1619), but it was not a satisfactory location. Although it was at the centre of the spice production areas, it was far from the Asian trade routes and other VOC areas of activity ranging from Africa to India to Japan. A location in the west of the archipelago was thus sought. The Straits of Malacca were strategic but became dangerous following the Portuguese conquest, and the first permanent VOC settlement in Banten was controlled by a powerful local ruler and subject to stiff competition from Chinese and English traders.
In 1604, a second English East India Company voyage commanded by Sir Henry Middleton reached the islands of Ternate, Tidore, Ambon and Banda. In Banda, they encountered severe VOC hostility, sparking Anglo-Dutch competition for access to spices. From 1611 to 1617, the English established trading posts at Sukadana (southwest Kalimantan), Makassar, Jayakarta and Jepara in Java, and Aceh, Pariaman and Jambi in Sumatra, which threatened Dutch ambitions for a monopoly on East Indies trade.
In 1620, diplomatic agreements in Europe ushered in a period of co-operation between the Dutch and the English over the spice trade. This ended with a notorious but disputed incident known as the 'Amboyna massacre', where ten Englishmen were arrested, tried and beheaded for conspiracy against the Dutch government. Although this caused outrage in Europe and a diplomatic crisis, the English quietly withdrew from most of their Indonesian activities (except trading in Banten) and focused on other Asian interests.
In 1619, Jan Pieterszoon Coen was appointed Governor-General of the VOC. He saw the possibility of the VOC becoming an Asian power, both political and economic. On 30 May 1619, Coen, backed by a force of nineteen ships, stormed Jayakarta, driving out the Banten forces; and from the ashes established Batavia as the VOC headquarters. In the 1620s almost the entire native population of the Banda Islands was driven away, starved to death, or killed in an attempt to replace them with Dutch plantations. These plantations were used to grow nutmeg for export. Coen hoped to settle large numbers of Dutch colonists in the East Indies, but implementation of this policy never materialised, mainly because very few Dutch were willing to emigrate to Asia.
Another of Coen's ventures was more successful. A major problem in the European trade with Asia at the time was that the Europeans could offer few goods that Asian consumers wanted, except silver and gold. European traders therefore had to pay for spices with the precious metals, which were in short supply in Europe, except for Spain and Portugal. The Dutch and English had to obtain it by creating a trade surplus with other European countries. Coen discovered the obvious solution for the problem: to start an intra-Asiatic trade system, whose profits could be used to finance the spice trade with Europe. In the long run this obviated the need for exports of precious metals from Europe, though at first it required the formation of a large trading-capital fund in the Indies. The VOC reinvested a large share of its profits to this end in the period up to 1630.
The VOC traded throughout Asia, benefiting mainly from Bengal. Ships coming into Batavia from the Netherlands carried supplies for VOC settlements in Asia. Silver and copper from Japan were used to trade with the world's wealthiest empires, Mughal India and Qing China, for silk, cotton, porcelain, and textiles. These products were either traded within Asia for the coveted spices or brought back to Europe. The VOC was also instrumental in introducing European ideas and technology to Asia. The company supported Christian missionaries and traded modern technology with China and Japan. A more peaceful VOC trade post on Dejima, an artificial island off the coast of Nagasaki, was for more than two hundred years the only place where Europeans were permitted to trade with Japan. When the VOC tried to use military force to make Ming dynasty China open up to Dutch trade, the Chinese defeated the Dutch in a war over the Penghu islands from 1623 to 1624, forcing the VOC to abandon Penghu for Taiwan. The Chinese defeated the VOC again at the Battle of Liaoluo Bay in 1633.
The Vietnamese Nguyen Lords defeated the VOC in a 1643 battle during the Trịnh–Nguyễn War, blowing up a Dutch ship. The Cambodians defeated the VOC in the Cambodian–Dutch War from 1643 to 1644 on the Mekong River.
In 1640, the VOC obtained the port of Galle, Ceylon, from the Portuguese and broke the latter's monopoly of the cinnamon trade. In 1658, Gerard Pietersz. Hulft laid siege to Colombo, which was captured with the help of King Rajasinghe II of Kandy. By 1659, the Portuguese had been expelled from the coastal regions, which were then occupied by the VOC, securing for it the monopoly over cinnamon. To prevent the Portuguese or the English from ever recapturing Sri Lanka, the VOC went on to conquer the entire Malabar Coast from the Portuguese, almost entirely driving them from the west coast of India. When news of a peace agreement between Portugal and the Netherlands reached Asia in 1663, Goa was the only remaining Portuguese city on the west coast.
In 1652, Jan van Riebeeck established a resupply outpost at the Cape of Storms (the southwestern tip of Africa, now Cape Town, South Africa) to service company ships on their journey to and from East Asia. The cape was later renamed Cape of Good Hope in honour of the outpost's presence. Although non-company ships were welcome to use the station, they were charged exorbitantly. This post later became a full-fledged colony, the Cape Colony, when more Dutch and other Europeans started to settle there.
Through the seventeenth century VOC trading posts were also established in Persia, Bengal, Malacca, Siam, Formosa (now Taiwan), as well as the Malabar and Coromandel coasts in India. Direct access to mainland China came in 1729 when a factory was established in Canton. In 1662, however, Koxinga expelled the Dutch from Taiwan (see History of Taiwan).
In 1663, the VOC signed the "Painan Treaty" with several local lords in the Painan area that were revolting against the Aceh Sultanate. The treaty allowed the VOC to build a trading post in the area and eventually to monopolise the trade there, especially the gold trade.
By 1669, the VOC was the richest private company the world had ever seen, with over 150 merchant ships, 40 warships, 50,000 employees, a private army of 10,000 soldiers, and a dividend payment of 40% on the original investment.
Around 1670, two events caused the growth of VOC trade to stall. In the first place, the highly profitable trade with Japan started to decline. The loss of the outpost on Formosa to Koxinga in the 1662 Siege of Fort Zeelandia and related internal turmoil in China (where the Ming dynasty was being replaced with the China's Qing dynasty) brought an end to the silk trade after 1666. Though the VOC substituted Mughal Bengal's for Chinese silk other forces affected the supply of Japanese silver and gold. The shogunate enacted a number of measures to limit the export of these precious metals, in the process limiting VOC opportunities for trade, and severely worsening the terms of trade. Therefore, Japan ceased to function as the lynchpin of the intra-Asiatic trade of the VOC by 1685.
Even more importantly, the Third Anglo-Dutch War temporarily interrupted VOC trade with Europe. This caused a spike in the price of pepper, which enticed the English East India Company (EIC) to enter this market aggressively in the years after 1672. Previously, one of the tenets of the VOC pricing policy was to slightly over-supply the pepper market, so as to depress prices below the level where interlopers were encouraged to enter the market (instead of striving for short-term profit maximisation). The wisdom of such a policy was illustrated when a fierce price war with the EIC ensued, as that company flooded the market with new supplies from India. In this struggle for market share, the VOC (which had much larger financial resources) could wait out the EIC. Indeed, by 1683, the latter came close to bankruptcy; its share price plummeted from 600 to 250; and its president Josiah Child was temporarily forced from office.
However, the writing was on the wall. Other companies, like the French East India Company and the Danish East India Company also started to make inroads on the Dutch system. The VOC therefore closed the heretofore flourishing open pepper emporium of Bantam by a treaty of 1684 with the Sultan. Also, on the Coromandel Coast, it moved its chief stronghold from Pulicat to Negapatnam, so as to secure a monopoly on the pepper trade at the detriment of the French and the Danes. However, the importance of these traditional commodities in the Asian-European trade was diminishing rapidly at the time. The military outlays that the VOC needed to make to enhance its monopoly were not justified by the increased profits of this declining trade.
Nevertheless, this lesson was slow to sink in and at first the VOC made the strategic decision to improve its military position on the Malabar Coast (hoping thereby to curtail English influence in the area, and end the drain on its resources from the cost of the Malabar garrisons) by using force to compel the Zamorin of Calicut to submit to Dutch domination. In 1710, the Zamorin was made to sign a treaty with the VOC undertaking to trade exclusively with the VOC and expel other European traders. For a brief time, this appeared to improve the company's prospects. However, in 1715, with EIC encouragement, the Zamorin renounced the treaty. Though a Dutch army managed to suppress this insurrection temporarily, the Zamorin continued to trade with the English and the French, which led to an appreciable upsurge in English and French traffic. The VOC decided in 1721 that it was no longer worth the trouble to try to dominate the Malabar pepper and spice trade. A strategic decision was taken to scale down the Dutch military presence and in effect yield the area to EIC influence.
The 1741 Battle of Colachel by warriors of Travancore under Raja Marthanda Varma defeated the Dutch. The Dutch commander Captain Eustachius De Lannoy was captured. Marthanda Varma agreed to spare the Dutch captain's life on condition that he joined his army and trained his soldiers on modern lines. This defeat in the Travancore-Dutch War is considered the earliest example of an organised Asian power overcoming European military technology and tactics; and it signalled the decline of Dutch power in India.
The attempt to continue as before as a low volume-high profit business enterprise with its core business in the spice trade had therefore failed. The company had however already (reluctantly) followed the example of its European competitors in diversifying into other Asian commodities, like tea, coffee, cotton, textiles, and sugar. These commodities provided a lower profit margin and therefore required a larger sales volume to generate the same amount of revenue. This structural change in the commodity composition of the VOC's trade started in the early 1680s, after the temporary collapse of the EIC around 1683 offered an excellent opportunity to enter these markets. The actual cause for the change lies, however, in two structural features of this new era.
In the first place, there was a revolutionary change in the tastes affecting European demand for Asian textiles, coffee and tea, around the turn of the 18th century. Secondly, a new era of an abundant supply of capital at low interest rates suddenly opened around this time. The second factor enabled the company easily to finance its expansion in the new areas of commerce. Between the 1680s and 1720s, the VOC was therefore able to equip and man an appreciable expansion of its fleet, and acquire a large amount of precious metals to finance the purchase of large amounts of Asian commodities, for shipment to Europe. The overall effect was approximately to double the size of the company.
The tonnage of the returning ships rose by 125 percent in this period. However, the company's revenues from the sale of goods landed in Europe rose by only 78 percent. This reflects the basic change in the VOC's circumstances that had occurred: it now operated in new markets for goods with an elastic demand, in which it had to compete on an equal footing with other suppliers. This made for low profit margins. Unfortunately, the business information systems of the time made this difficult to discern for the managers of the company, which may partly explain the mistakes they made from hindsight. This lack of information might have been counteracted (as in earlier times in the VOC's history) by the business acumen of the directors. Unfortunately by this time these were almost exclusively recruited from the political regent class, which had long since lost its close relationship with merchant circles.
Low profit margins in themselves do not explain the deterioration of revenues. To a large extent the costs of the operation of the VOC had a "fixed" character (military establishments; maintenance of the fleet and such). Profit levels might therefore have been maintained if the increase in the scale of trading operations that in fact took place had resulted in economies of scale. However, though larger ships transported the growing volume of goods, labour productivity did not go up sufficiently to realise these. In general the company's overhead rose in step with the growth in trade volume; declining gross margins translated directly into a decline in profitability of the invested capital. The era of expansion was one of "profitless growth".
Specifically: "[t]he long-term average annual profit in the VOC's 1630–70 'Golden Age' was 2.1 million guilders, of which just under half was distributed as dividends and the remainder reinvested. The long-term average annual profit in the 'Expansion Age' (1680–1730) was 2.0 million guilders, of which three-quarters was distributed as dividend and one-quarter reinvested. In the earlier period, profits averaged 18 percent of total revenues; in the latter period, 10 percent. The annual return of invested capital in the earlier period stood at approximately 6 percent; in the latter period, 3.4 percent."
Nevertheless, in the eyes of investors the VOC did not do too badly. The share price hovered consistently around the 400 mark from the mid-1680s (excepting a hiccup around the Glorious Revolution in 1688), and they reached an all-time high of around 642 in the 1720s. VOC shares then yielded a return of 3.5 percent, only slightly less than the yield on Dutch government bonds.
Decline and fall
This section needs additional citations for verification. (March 2017) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)
After 1730, the fortunes of the VOC started to decline. Five major problems, not all of equal weight, explain its decline over the next fifty years to 1780:
- There was a steady erosion of intra-Asiatic trade because of changes in the Asiatic political and economic environment that the VOC could do little about. These factors gradually squeezed the company out of Persia, Suratte, the Malabar Coast, and Bengal. The company had to confine its operations to the belt it physically controlled, from Ceylon through the Indonesian archipelago. The volume of this intra-Asiatic trade, and its profitability, therefore had to shrink.
- The way the company was organised in Asia (centralised on its hub in Batavia), that initially had offered advantages in gathering market information, began to cause disadvantages in the 18th century because of the inefficiency of first shipping everything to this central point. This disadvantage was most keenly felt in the tea trade, where competitors like the EIC and the Ostend Company shipped directly from China to Europe.
- The "venality" of the VOC's personnel (in the sense of corruption and non-performance of duties), though a problem for all East India Companies at the time, seems to have plagued the VOC on a larger scale than its competitors. To be sure, the company was not a "good employer". Salaries were low, and "private-account trading" was officially not allowed. Not surprisingly, it proliferated in the 18th century to the detriment of the company's performance. From about the 1790s onward, the phrase perished under corruption (vergaan onder corruptie, also abbreviated VOC in Dutch) came to summarise the company's future.
- A problem that the VOC shared with other companies was the high mortality and morbidity rates among its employees. This decimated the company's ranks and enervated many of the survivors.
- A self-inflicted wound was the VOC's dividend policy. The dividends distributed by the company had exceeded the surplus it garnered in Europe in every decade from 1690 to 1760 except 1710–1720. However, in the period up to 1730 the directors shipped resources to Asia to build up the trading capital there. Consolidated bookkeeping therefore probably would have shown that total profits exceeded dividends. In addition, between 1700 and 1740 the company retired 5.4 million guilders of long-term debt. The company therefore was still on a secure financial footing in these years. This changed after 1730. While profits plummeted the bewindhebbers only slightly decreased dividends from the earlier level. Distributed dividends were therefore in excess of earnings in every decade but one (1760–1770). To accomplish this, the Asian capital stock had to be drawn down by 4 million guilders between 1730 and 1780, and the liquid capital available in Europe was reduced by 20 million guilders in the same period. The directors were therefore constrained to replenish the company's liquidity by resorting to short-term financing from anticipatory loans, backed by expected revenues from home-bound fleets.
Despite these problems, the VOC in 1780 remained an enormous operation. Its capital in the Republic, consisting of ships and goods in inventory, totalled 28 million guilders; its capital in Asia, consisting of the liquid trading fund and goods en route to Europe, totalled 46 million guilders. Total capital, net of outstanding debt, stood at 62 million guilders. The prospects of the company at this time therefore were not hopeless, had one of the plans for reform been undertaken successfully. However, the Fourth Anglo-Dutch War intervened. British naval attacks in Europe and Asia reduced the VOC fleet by half; removed valuable cargo from its control; and eroded its remaining power in Asia. The direct losses of the VOC during the war can be calculated at 43 million guilders. Loans to keep the company operating reduced its net assets to zero.
From 1720 on, the market for sugar from Indonesia declined as the competition from cheap sugar from Brazil increased. European markets became saturated. Dozens of Chinese sugar traders went bankrupt, which led to massive unemployment, which in turn led to gangs of unemployed coolies. The Dutch government in Batavia did not adequately respond to these problems. In 1740, rumours of deportation of the gangs from the Batavia area led to widespread rioting. The Dutch military searched houses of Chinese in Batavia for weapons. When a house accidentally burnt down, military and impoverished citizens started slaughtering and pillaging the Chinese community. This massacre of the Chinese was deemed sufficiently serious for the board of the VOC to start an official investigation into the Government of the Dutch East Indies for the first time in its history.
After the Fourth Anglo-Dutch War, the VOC was a financial wreck. After vain attempts at reorganisation by the provincial States of Holland and Zeeland, it was nationalised by the new Batavian Republic on 1 March 1796. The VOC charter was renewed several times, but was allowed to expire on 31 December 1799. Most of the possessions of the former VOC were subsequently occupied by Great Britain during the Napoleonic wars, but after the new United Kingdom of the Netherlands was created by the Congress of Vienna, some of these were restored to this successor state of the Dutch Republic by the Anglo-Dutch Treaty of 1814.
The VOC is generally considered to be the world's first truly transnational corporation and it was also the first multinational enterprise to issue shares of stock to the public. Some historians such as Timothy Brook and Russell Shorto consider the VOC as the pioneering corporation in the first wave of the corporate globalisation era. The VOC was the first multinational corporation to operate officially in different continents such as Europe, Asia and Africa. While the VOC mainly operated in what later became the Dutch East Indies (modern Indonesia), the company also had important operations elsewhere. It employed people from different continents and origins in the same functions and working environments. Although it was a Dutch company its employees included not only people from the Netherlands, but also many from Germany and from other countries as well. Besides the diverse north-west European workforce recruited by the VOC in the Dutch Republic, the VOC made extensive use of local Asian labour markets. As a result, the personnel of the various VOC offices in Asia consisted of European and Asian employees. Asian or Eurasian workers might be employed as sailors, soldiers, writers, carpenters, smiths, or as simple unskilled workers. At the height of its existence the VOC had 25,000 employees who worked in Asia and 11,000 who were en route. Also, while most of its shareholders were Dutch, about a quarter of the initial shareholders were Zuid-Nederlanders (people from an area that includes modern Belgium and Luxembourg) and there were also a few dozen Germans.
The VOC had two types of shareholders: the participanten, who could be seen as non-managing members, and the 76 bewindhebbers (later reduced to 60) who acted as managing directors. This was the usual set-up for Dutch joint-stock companies at the time. The innovation in the case of the VOC was that the liability of not just the participanten but also of the bewindhebbers was limited to the paid-in capital (usually, bewindhebbers had unlimited liability). The VOC therefore was a limited liability company. Also, the capital would be permanent during the lifetime of the company. As a consequence, investors that wished to liquidate their interest in the interim could only do this by selling their share to others on the Amsterdam Stock Exchange. Confusion of confusions, a 1688 dialogue by the Sephardi Jew Joseph de la Vega analysed the workings of this one-stock exchange.
The VOC consisted of six Chambers (Kamers) in port cities: Amsterdam, Delft, Rotterdam, Enkhuizen, Middelburg and Hoorn. Delegates of these chambers convened as the Heeren XVII (the Lords Seventeen). They were selected from the bewindhebber-class of shareholders.
Of the Heeren XVII, eight delegates were from the Chamber of Amsterdam (one short of a majority on its own), four from the Chamber of Zeeland, and one from each of the smaller Chambers, while the seventeenth seat was alternatively from the Chamber of Middelburg-Zeeland or rotated among the five small Chambers. Amsterdam had thereby the decisive voice. The Zeelanders in particular had misgivings about this arrangement at the beginning. The fear was not unfounded, because in practice it meant Amsterdam stipulated what happened.
The six chambers raised the start-up capital of the Dutch East India Company:
The raising of capital in Rotterdam did not go so smoothly. A considerable part originated from inhabitants of Dordrecht. Although it did not raise as much capital as Amsterdam or Middelburg-Zeeland, Enkhuizen had the largest input in the share capital of the VOC. Under the first 358 shareholders, there were many small entrepreneurs, who dared to take the risk. The minimum investment in the VOC was 3,000 guilders, which priced the company's stock within the means of many merchants.
Among the early shareholders of the VOC, immigrants played an important role. Under the 1,143 tenderers were 39 Germans and no fewer than 301 from the Southern Netherlands (roughly present Belgium and Luxembourg, then under Habsburg rule), of whom Isaac le Maire was the largest subscriber with ƒ85,000. VOC's total capitalisation was ten times that of its British rival.
The Heeren XVII (Lords Seventeen) met alternately six years in Amsterdam and two years in Middelburg-Zeeland. They defined the VOC's general policy and divided the tasks among the Chambers. The Chambers carried out all the necessary work, built their own ships and warehouses and traded the merchandise. The Heeren XVII sent the ships' masters off with extensive instructions on the route to be navigated, prevailing winds, currents, shoals and landmarks. The VOC also produced its own charts.
In the context of the Dutch-Portuguese War the company established its headquarters in Batavia, Java (now Jakarta, Indonesia). Other colonial outposts were also established in the East Indies, such as on the Maluku Islands, which include the Banda Islands, where the VOC forcibly maintained a monopoly over nutmeg and mace. Methods used to maintain the monopoly involved extortion and the violent suppression of the native population, including mass murder. In addition, VOC representatives sometimes used the tactic of burning spice trees to force indigenous populations to grow other crops, thus artificially cutting the supply of spices like nutmeg and cloves.
The seventeenth-century Dutch businessmen, especially the VOC investors, were possibly the history's first recorded investors to seriously consider the corporate governance's problems. Isaac Le Maire, who is known as history's first recorded short seller, was also a sizeable shareholder of the VOC. In 1609, he complained of the VOC's shoddy corporate governance. On 24 January 1609, Le Maire filed a petition against the VOC, marking the first recorded expression of shareholder activism. In what is the first recorded corporate governance dispute, Le Maire formally charged that the VOC's board of directors (the Heeren XVII) sought to "retain another's money for longer or use it ways other than the latter wishes" and petitioned for the liquidation of the VOC in accordance with standard business practice. Initially the largest single shareholder in the VOC and a bewindhebber sitting on the board of governors, Le Maire apparently attempted to divert the firm's profits to himself by undertaking 14 expeditions under his own accounts instead of those of the company. Since his large shareholdings were not accompanied by greater voting power, Le Maire was soon ousted by other governors in 1605 on charges of embezzlement, and was forced to sign an agreement not to compete with the VOC. Having retained stock in the company following this incident, in 1609 Le Maire would become the author of what is celebrated as "first recorded expression of shareholder advocacy at a publicly traded company".
In 1622, the history's first recorded shareholder revolt also happened among the VOC investors who complained that the company account books had been "smeared with bacon" so that they might be "eaten by dogs." The investors demanded a "reeckeninge," a proper financial audit. The 1622 campaign by the shareholders of the VOC is a testimony of genesis of corporate social responsibility (CSR) in which shareholders staged protests by distributing pamphlets and complaining about management self enrichment and secrecy.
Main trading posts, settlements, and colonies
- Dutch Mauritius (1638–1658; 1664–1710)
- Dutch Cape Colony (1652–1806)
- Dutch Coromandel (1608–1825)
- Dutch Suratte (1616–1825)
- Dutch Bengal (1627–1825)
- Dutch Ceylon (1640–1796)
- Dutch Malabar (1661–1795)
- Anping (Fort Zeelandia)
- Tainan (Fort Provincia)
- Wang-an, Penghu, Pescadores Islands (Fort Vlissingen; 1620–1624)
- Keelung (Fort Noord-Holland, Fort Victoria)
- Tamsui (Fort Antonio)
- Dutch Malacca (1641–1795; 1818–1825)
- Ayutthaya (1608–1767)
Conflicts and wars involving the VOC
The history of VOC commercial conflict, for example with the British East India Company (EIC), was at times closely connected to Dutch military conflicts. The commercial interests of the VOC (and more generally the Netherlands) were reflected in military objectives and the settlements agreed by treaty. In the Treaty of Breda (1667) ending the Second Anglo-Dutch War, the Dutch were finally able to secure a VOC monopoly for nutmeg trade, ceding the island of Manhattan to the British while gaining the last non-VOC controlled source of nutmeg, the island of Rhun in the Banda islands. The Dutch later re-captured Manhattan, but returned it along with the colony of New Netherland in the Treaty of Westminster (1674) ending the Third Anglo-Dutch War. The British also gave up claims on Suriname as part of the Treaty of Westminster. There was also an effort to compensate the war-related losses of the Dutch West India Company in the mid-17th Century by the profits of the VOC, though this was ultimately blocked.
Historical roles and legacy
The Netherlands United East Indies Company (Verenigde Oostindische Compagnie, or VOC), founded in 1602, was the world's first multinational, joint-stock, limited liability corporation – as well as its first government-backed trading cartel. Our own East India Company, founded in 1600, remained a coffee-house clique until 1657, when it, too, began selling shares, not in individual voyages, but in John Company itself, by which time its Dutch rival was by far the biggest commercial enterprise the world had known.
(...) As populations grew, more robust legal and financial infrastructures began to develop across Europe. Those infrastructures, combined with advances in shipping technology, made large-scale trade feasible for the first time. In 1602, the Dutch East India Company was formed. It was a new type of institution: the first multinational company, and the first to issue public stock. These innovations allowed a single company to mobilize financial resources from a large number of investors and create ventures at a scale that had previously only been possible for monarchs.
In terms of global business history, the lessons from the VOC's successes or failures are critically important. In his book Amsterdam: A History of the World's Most Liberal City (2013), American author and historian Russell Shorto summarises the VOC's importance in world history: "Like the oceans it mastered, the VOC had a scope that is hard to fathom. One could craft a defensible argument that no company in history has had such an impact on the world. Its surviving archives – in Cape Town, Colombo, Chennai, Jakarta, and The Hague – have been measured (by a consortium applying for a UNESCO grant to preserve them) in kilometers. In innumerable ways the VOC both expanded the world and brought its far-flung regions together. It introduced Europe to Asia and Africa, and vice versa (while its sister multinational, the West India Company, set New York City in motion and colonized Brazil and the Caribbean Islands). It pioneered globalisation and invented what might be the first modern bureaucracy. It advanced cartography and shipbuilding. It fostered disease, slavery, and exploitation on a scale never before imaged."
A pioneering early model of the multinational corporation in its modern sense, the company is also considered to be the world's first true transnational corporation. In the early 1600s, the VOC became the world's first formally listed public company because it was the first corporation to be ever actually listed on a formal stock exchange. The VOC had a massive influence on the evolution of the modern corporation by creating an institutional prototype for subsequent large-scale business enterprises (in particular large corporations like multinational/transnational/global corporations) and their rise to become a highly significant socio-politico-economic force of the modern world as we know it today. In many respects, modern-day publicly listed global companies (including Forbes Global 2000 companies) are all 'descendants' of a business model pioneered by the VOC in the 17th century. Like modern-day major corporations, in many ways, the post-1657 English/British East India Company's operational structure was a derivative of the earlier VOC model.
During its golden age, the company played crucial roles in business, financial,[n] socio-politico-economic, military-political, diplomatic, ethnic, and exploratory maritime history of the world. In the early modern period, the VOC was also the driving force behind the rise of corporate-led globalization, corporate power, corporate identity, corporate culture, corporate social responsibility, corporate ethics, corporate governance, corporate finance, corporate capitalism, and finance capitalism. With its pioneering institutional innovations and powerful roles in world history, the company is considered by many to be the first major, first modern,[o] first global, most valuable, and most influential corporation ever seen.[p] The VOC was also arguably the first historical model of the megacorporation.
Pioneering institutional innovations and impacts on modern-day global business practices and financial system
The defining characteristics of the modern corporation, all of which emerged during the Dutch cycle, include: limited liability for investors, free transferability of investor interests, legal personality and centralised management. Although some of these characteristics were present to a certain extent in the fourteenth-century Genoese societas comperarum of the first cycle, the first wholly cognisable modern limited liability public company was the VOC. The organisational structures and corporate practices of the VOC were closely paralleled by the English East India Company and served as the direct model for all of the later mercantile trading companies of the second cycle, including those of Italy, France, Portugal, Denmark, and Brandenburg-Prussia.— Eric Michael Wilson, in "The Savage Republic" (2008)
In 1602 shares in the Dutch Vereenigde Oost-Indische Compagnie (VOC, better known as the Dutch East India Company) were issued, suddenly creating what is usually considered the world's first publicly traded company. (...) There are other claimants to the title of first public company, including a twelfth-century water mill in France and a thirteenth-century company intended to control the English wool trade, Staple of London. Its shares, however, and the manner in which those shares were traded, did not truly allow public ownership by anyone who happened to be able to afford a share. The arrival of VOC shares was therefore momentous, because as Fernand Braudel pointed out, it opened up the ownership of companies and the ideas they generated, beyond the ranks of the aristocracy and the very rich, so that everyone could finally participate in the speculative freedom of transactions. By expanding ownership of its company pie for a certain price and a tentative return, the Dutch had done something historic: they had created a capital market.
The VOC played a crucial role in the rise of corporate-led globalisation, corporate governance, corporate identity, corporate social responsibility, corporate finance, modern entrepreneurship, and financial capitalism. During its golden age, the company made some fundamental institutional innovations in economic and financial history. These financially revolutionary innovations allowed a single company (like the VOC) to mobilise financial resources from a large number of investors and create ventures at a scale that had previously only been possible for monarchs. In the words of Canadian historian and sinologist Timothy Brook, "the Dutch East India Company – the VOC, as it is known – is to corporate capitalism what Benjamin Franklin's kite is to electronics: the beginning of something momentous that could not have been predicted at the time." The birth and growth of the VOC (especially in the 17th century) is considered by many to be the official beginning of the corporate globalisation era with the rise of large-scale business enterprises (multinational/transnational corporations in particular) as a highly formidable socio-politico-economic force that significantly affects people's lives in every corner of the world today, whether for better or worse. As the world's first publicly traded company and first listed company (the first company to be ever listed on an official stock exchange), the VOC was the first company to issue stock and bonds to the general public. Considered by many experts to be the world's first truly (modern) multinational corporation, the VOC was also the first permanently organised limited-liability joint-stock company, with a permanent capital base.[r] The VOC shareholders were the pioneers in laying the basis for modern corporate governance and corporate finance. The VOC is often considered as the precursor of modern corporations, if not the first truly modern corporation. It was the VOC that invented the idea of investing in the company rather than in a specific venture governed by the company. With its pioneering features such as corporate identity (first globally recognised corporate logo), entrepreneurial spirit, legal personhood, transnational (multinational) operational structure, high and stable profitability, permanent capital (fixed capital stock), freely transferable shares and tradable securities, separation of ownership and management, and limited liability for both shareholders and managers, the VOC is generally considered a major institutional breakthrough and the model for large corporations that now dominate the global economy.
The stock market – the daytime adventure serial of the well-to-do – would not be the stock market if it did not have its ups and downs. (...) Apart from the economic advantages and disadvantages of stock exchanges – the advantage that they provide a free flow of capital to finance industrial expansion, for instance, and the disadvantage that they provide an all too convenient way for the unlucky, the imprudent, and the gullible to lose their money – their development has created a whole pattern of social behavior, complete with customs, language, and predictable responses to given events. What is truly extraordinary is the speed with which this pattern emerged full blown following the establishment, in 1611, of the world's first important stock exchange – a roofless courtyard in Amsterdam – and the degree to which it persists (with variations, it is true) on the New York Stock Exchange in the nineteen-sixties. Present-day stock trading in the United States – a bewilderingly vast enterprise, involving millions of miles of private telegraph wires, computers that can read and copy the Manhattan Telephone Directory in three minutes, and over twenty million stockholder participants – would seem to be a far cry from a handful of seventeenth-century Dutchmen haggling in the rain. But the field marks are much the same. The first stock exchange was, inadvertently, a laboratory in which new human reactions were revealed. By the same token, the New York Stock Exchange is also a sociological test tube, forever contributing to the human species' self-understanding. The behaviour of the pioneering Dutch stock traders is ably documented in a book entitled "Confusion of Confusions," written by a plunger on the Amsterdam market named Joseph de la Vega; originally published in 1688 (...)
Business ventures with multiple shareholders became popular with commenda contracts in medieval Italy (Greif, 2006, p. 286), and Malmendier (2009) provides evidence that shareholder companies date back to ancient Rome. Yet the title of the world's first stock market deservedly goes to that of seventeenth-century Amsterdam, where an active secondary market in company shares emerged. The two major companies were the Dutch East India Company and the Dutch West India Company, founded in 1602 and 1621. Other companies existed, but they were not as large and constituted a small portion of the stock market.
The VOC was a driving force behind the rise of Amsterdam as the first modern model of international financial centres[s] that now dominate the global financial system. With their political independence, huge maritime and financial power, Republican-period Amsterdam and other Dutch cities – unlike their Southern Netherlandish cousins and predecessors such as Burgundian-rule Bruges and Habsburg-rule Antwerp – could control crucial resources and markets directly, sending their combined fleets to almost all quarters of the globe. During the 17th century and most of the 18th century, Amsterdam had been the most influential financial centre of the world. The VOC also played a major role in the creation of the world's first fully functioning financial market, with the birth of a fully fledged capital market. The Dutch were also the first who effectively used a fully-fledged capital market (including the bond market and the stock market) to finance companies (such as the VOC and the WIC). It was in the 17th-century Dutch Republic that the global securities market began to take on its modern form. And it was in Amsterdam that the important institutional innovations such as publicly traded companies, transnational corporations, capital markets (including bond markets and stock markets), central banking system, investment banking system, and investment funds (mutual funds) were systematically operated for the first time in history. In 1602 the VOC established an exchange in Amsterdam where VOC stock and bonds could be traded in a secondary market. The VOC undertook the world's first recorded IPO in the same year. The Amsterdam Stock Exchange (Amsterdamsche Beurs or Beurs van Hendrick de Keyser in Dutch) was also the world's first fully-fledged stock exchange. While the Italian city-states produced first formal bond markets, they did not develop the other ingredient necessary to produce a fully fledged capital market: the formal stock market. The Dutch East India Company (VOC) became the first company to offer shares of stock. The dividend averaged around 18% of capital over the course of the company's 200-year existence. The launch of the Amsterdam Stock Exchange by the VOC in the early 1600s, has long been recognised as the origin of 'modern' stock exchanges that specialise in creating and sustaining secondary markets in the securities (such as bonds and shares of stock) issued by corporations. Dutch investors were the first to trade their shares at a regular stock exchange. The process of buying and selling these shares of stock in the VOC became the basis of the first official (formal) stock market in history. It was in the Dutch Republic that the early techniques of stock-market manipulation were developed. The Dutch pioneered stock futures, stock options, short selling, bear raids, debt-equity swaps, and other speculative instruments. Amsterdam businessman Joseph de la Vega's Confusion of Confusions (1688) was the earliest book about stock trading.
(...) I don't understand why you're all being so negative and unpleasant. Let's just be happy with each other. Let's just say "the Netherlands can do it" again: that VOC mentality. Look across our borders. Dynamism! Don't you think?
(...) The charter of the Dutch East India Company stipulated that any Dutch citizen could buy shares in the company. Many did grasp this opportunity. And they were not only wealthy merchants! Among these first shareholders were corn dealers, grocers, bakers, brewers, tailors, seamstresses, sail makers, carpenters, cobblers and servants. One of the most modest participants was the Mayor of Amsterdam's maid. Her name was Grietje Dirksdochter. Grietje saw a tipping point in Dutch history. This new opening provided ordinary people like her not only with the opportunity of becoming a shareholder of a mere shipping company. It provided her with the opportunity of becoming a shareholder of the Dutch Golden Age. Of an exciting era of social development and economic growth. She was taking part in a new, dynamic economy.
The idea of a highly competitive and organised (active mainly in Greater India but headquartered in the United Provinces of the Netherlands) Dutch government-backed privately financed military-commercial enterprise was the wartime brainchild of the leading republican statesman Johan van Oldenbarnevelt and the States-General in the late 1590s. In 1602, the "United" East India Company (VOC) was formed by a government-directed consolidation/amalgamation of several rival Dutch trading companies or the so-called voorcompagnieën. It was a time when the newly formed Dutch Republic was in the midst of their eighty-year-long revolutionary global war (1579–1648) against the mighty Spanish Empire, a foremost superpower of the early modern world, and its Iberian Union (1580–1640). And therefore, from the beginning, the VOC was not only a business enterprise but also an instrument of war. In other words, the VOC was a fully functioning military-political-commercial complex in its own right rather than a pure trading company or shipping company.[u]
(...) Only a unique federal state such as the Dutch Republic could have dreamed up a federal company structure. The VOC combined flexibility with strength, giving the Dutch a huge advantage in the competition to dominate maritime trade to Asia. Within a few decades, the VOC proved itself to be the most powerful trading corporation in the seventeenth-century world and the model for the large-scale business enterprises that now dominate the global economy.
In the early modern period, the VOC was the largest private employer in the Low Countries. The company was a major force behind the financial revolution[v] and economic miracle of the young Dutch Republic in the 17th century. During their Golden Age, the Dutch Republic (or the Northern Netherlands), as the resource-poor and obscure cousins of the more urbanised Southern Netherlands, rose to become the world's leading economic and financial superpower.[w] Despite its lack of natural resources (except for water and wind power) and its comparatively modest size and population, the Dutch Republic dominated global market in many advanced industries such as shipbuilding, shipping, water engineering, printing and publishing, map making, pulp and paper, lens-making, sugarcane refining, overseas investment, financial services, and international trade. The Dutch Republic was an early industrialized nation-state in its Golden Age. The 17th-century Dutch mechanical innovations/inventions such as wind-powered sawmills and Hollander beaters helped revolutionize shipbuilding and paper (including pulp)[x] industries in the early modern period. The VOC's shipyards also contributed greatly to the Dutch domination of global shipbuilding and shipping industries during the 1600s.[y] "By seventeenth century standards," as Richard Unger affirms, Dutch shipbuilding "was a massive industry and larger than any shipbuilding industry which had preceded it." By the 1670s the size of the Dutch merchant fleet probably exceeded the combined fleets of England, France, Spain, Portugal, and Germany. Until the mid-1700s, the economic system of the Dutch Republic (including its financial system) was the most advanced and sophisticated ever seen in history. From about 1600 to 1720, the Dutch had the highest per capita income in the world, at least double that of neighbouring countries at the time.
However, in a typical multicultural society of the Netherlands (home to one million citizens with roots in the former colonies Indonesia, Suriname and the Antilles), the VOC's history (and especially its dark side) has always been a potential source of controversy. In 2006 when the Dutch Prime Minister Jan Pieter Balkenende referred to the pioneering entrepreneurial spirit and work ethics of the Dutch people and Dutch Republic in their Golden Age, he coined the term "VOC mentality" (VOC-mentaliteit in Dutch).[z] For Balkenende, the VOC represented Dutch business acumen, entrepreneurship, adventurous spirit, and decisiveness. However, it unleashed a wave of criticism, since such romantic views about the Dutch Golden Age ignores the inherent historical associations with colonialism, exploitation and violence. Balkenende later stressed that "it had not been his intention to refer to that at all". But in spite of criticisms, the "VOC-mentality", as a characteristic of the selective historical perspective on the Dutch Golden Age, has been considered a key feature of Dutch cultural policy for many years.
Roles in the history of the global economy and international relations
Its [the VOC's] fame as the first public company, which heralded the transition from feudalism to modern capitalism,[aa] and its remarkable financial success for nearly two centuries ensure its importance in the history of capitalism.— Warwick Funnell and Jeffrey Robertson, in "Accounting by the First Public Company" (2014)
(...) Here [17th-century Ternate, North Maluku, Indonesia], surely, was a very early, fully operational manifestation of international integration, the embryonic form of today's ubiquitous globalisation. We would recognise its constituent elements. Here was the tenuous but well-structured supply-chain, extended all the way from Banda to Amsterdam, via numerous ports and functionaries, administered with brutal efficiency by the Dutch East India Company, perhaps the first business organisation that bears resemblance to today's multinational corporations. The company raised money by issuing shares. It had the first widely-recognised commercial logo. Even without today's computers, the company's officials were linked through a hierarchy of regular detailed reporting and accounting. Production was brought together in plantations and processed in 'factories'. Near-subsistence agriculture was replaced with scale and quality control, supervised by the perkeniers with an incentivising profit-sharing deal with the company. Customer feedback was insistently relayed to producers: 'small nutmegs are of no value'. This mighty machine produced 3000 tons of nutmeg annually and transported it across hazardous waters to deliver it to the burghers of Holland and on to the rest of Europe's spice-hungry upper-class. Ad hoc trade between nations, with goods passing through many hands, many owners and many markets, was replaced by 'straight-through' processing by a single entity – the Dutch East India Company.
The VOC was a transcontinental employer and an early pioneer of outward foreign direct investment at the dawn of modern capitalism. In his book The Ecology of Money: Debt, Growth, and Sustainability (2013), Adrian Kuzminski notes, "The Dutch, it seems, more than anyone in the West since the palmy days of ancient Rome, had more money than they knew what to do with. They discovered, unlike the Romans, that the best use of money was to make more money. They invested it, mostly in overseas ventures, utilising the innovation of the joint-stock company in which private investors could purchase shares, the most famous being the Dutch East India Company." The VOC's intercontinental activities played a major role to the Dutch Republic's prosperity, as well as it could awaken socio-economic dynamism elsewhere. Wherever Dutch capital went, urban features were developed, economic activities expanded, new industries established, new jobs created, trading companies operated, swamps drained, mines opened, forests exploited, canals constructed, mills turned, and ships were built. In the early modern period, the Dutch were pioneering capitalists who raised the commercial and industrial potential of underdeveloped or undeveloped lands whose resources they exploited, whether for better or worse. For example, the native economies of pre-VOC-era Taiwan[ab] and South Africa were virtually undeveloped or were in almost primitive states. In many way, recorded economic history of Taiwan and South Africa began with the golden age of the VOC in the 17th century. It was VOC people who established and developed the first urban areas in the history of Taiwan (Tainan) and South Africa (including Cape Town, Stellenbosch, and Swellendam).
The VOC existed for almost 200 years from its founding in 1602, when the States-General of the Netherlands granted it a 21-year monopoly over Dutch operations in Asia until its demise in 1796. During those two centuries (between 1602 and 1796), the VOC sent almost a million Europeans to work in the Asia trade on 4,785 ships, and netted for their efforts more than 2.5 million tons of Asian trade goods. By contrast, the rest of Europe combined sent only 882,412 people from 1500 to 1795, and the fleet of the English (later British) East India Company, the VOC's nearest competitor, was a distant second to its total traffic with 2,690 ships and a mere one-fifth the tonnage of goods carried by the VOC. The VOC enjoyed huge profits from its spice monopoly through most of the 17th century. By 1669, the VOC was the richest company the world had ever seen, with over 150 merchant ships, 40 warships, 50,000 employees, a private army of 10,000 soldiers, and a dividend payment of 40% on the original investment.
A CorporNation's vast global influence enables it to function simultaneously in two realms: a for-profit company, and as a force that can shape the geopolitical landscape. Google isn't the only CorporNation; Goldman Sachs is clearly in that category – as the Greek political crisis has revealed, the company has been a partner in deceit with governments that used financial alchemy to disguise deficits as off-balance sheet baubles. Wal-Mart functioned as a CorporNation during Katrina. CorporNations aren't new. Indeed, they are as old as capitalism, going back to the Dutch East India Company, which was chartered in 1602, became the world's first global company and transformed Holland into a colonial power as it dominated the East.
A chartered company, the first with publicly traded stocks, and—within a few decades of its foundation—the richest company in the world, the VOC was not merely a business interest. It constituted a politogen, even a state in itself. By 1669, it commanded over two hundred ships, a quarter of them warships, and ten thousand soldiers. The Dutch state had granted the VOC law-making, war-making, and judicial authority. It founded colonies that proved to be fully functioning, if not fully independent, states that lasted for centuries. It deported and imported populations to build new societies dedicated to a productive economy, it annihilated horizontal communities, and toppled preexisting local states. (...) One of the VOC's most groundbreaking achievements was to organize, practically alone, an intercontinental cycle of accumulation that was vital to the emergence of global capitalism and the modern state.
In terms of military-political history, the VOC, along with the Dutch West India Company (WIC/GWIC), was seen as the international arm of the Dutch Republic and the symbolic power of the Dutch Empire. The VOC was historically a military-political-economic complex rather than a pure trading company (or shipping company). The government-backed but privately financed company was effectively a state in its own right, or a state within another state.[ac] For almost 200 years of its existence, the VOC was a key non-state geopolitical player in Eurasia. The company was much an unofficial representative of the States General of the United Provinces in foreign relations of the Dutch Republic with many states, especially Dutch-Asian relations. The company's territories were even larger than some countries.
The VOC had seminal influences on the modern history of many countries and territories around the world such as New Netherland (New York), Indonesia, Malaysia, India, Sri Lanka, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Mauritius, Taiwan, and Japan.
Artistic, scientific, technological, and cultural legacies of the VOC World
(...) Much has also been learned about the VOC and Dutch colonial societies. Moreover, the TANAP (Towards a New Age of Partnership, 2000–2007) project has created momentum for research on the relationship between the VOC and indigenous societies. In contrast, the role of the VOC in cultural history and especially in the history of visual and material culture has not yet attracted comparable interest. To be sure, journals and other travel accounts (some even with illustrations) by soldiers, shippers, and VOC officials among others have been utilized as sources.— Michael North & Thomas DaCosta Kaufmann, in "Mediating Netherlandish Art and Material Culture in Asia" (2014)
As information and knowledge exchange network
During the Dutch Golden Age, the Dutch – using their expertise in doing business, cartography, shipbuilding, seafaring and navigation – traveled to the far corners of the world, leaving their language embedded in the names of many places. Dutch exploratory voyages revealed largely unknown landmasses to the civilised world and put their names on the world map. During the Golden Age of Dutch exploration (c. 1590s–1720s) and the Golden Age of Netherlandish cartography (c. 1570s–1670s), Dutch-speaking navigators, explorers, and cartographers were the undisputed firsts to chart/map many hitherto largely unknown regions of the earth and the sky. The Dutch came to dominate the map-making and map printing industry by virtue of their own travels, trade ventures, and widespread commercial networks. As Dutch ships reached into the unknown corners of the globe, Dutch cartographers incorporated new geographical discoveries into their work. Instead of using the information themselves secretly, they published it, so the maps multiplied freely. For almost 200 years, the Dutch dominated world trade. Dutch ships carried goods, but they also opened up opportunities for the exchange of knowledge. The commercial networks of the Dutch transnational companies, Dutch transnational companies, e.g. the VOC and West India Company (WIC/GWIC), provided an infrastructure which was accessible to people with a scholarly interest in the exotic world. The VOC's bookkeeper Hendrick Hamel was the first known European/Westerner to experience first-hand and write about Joseon-era Korea.[ad] In his report (published in the Dutch Republic) in 1666 Hendrick Hamel described his adventures on the Korean Peninsula and gave the first accurate description of daily life of Koreans to the western world. The VOC trade post on Dejima, an artificial island off the coast of Nagasaki, was for more than two hundred years the only place where Europeans were permitted to trade with Japan. Rangaku (literally 'Dutch Learning', and by extension 'Western Learning') is a body of knowledge developed by Japan through its contacts with the Dutch enclave of Dejima, which allowed Japan to keep abreast of Western technology and medicine in the period when the country was closed to foreigners, 1641–1853, because of the Tokugawa shogunate's policy of national isolation (sakoku).
Influences on Dutch Golden Age art
From 1609 the VOC had a trading post in Japan (Hirado, Nagasaki), which used local paper for its own administration. However, the paper was also traded to the VOC's other trading posts and even the Dutch Republic. Many impressions of the Dutch Golden Age artist Rembrandt's prints were done on Japanese paper. From about 1647 Rembrandt sought increasingly to introduce variation into his prints by using different sorts of paper, and printed most of his plates regularly on Japanese paper. He also used the paper for his drawings. The Japanese paper types – which was actually imported from Japan by the VOC – attracted Rembrandt with its warm, yellowish colour. They are often smooth and shiny, whilst Western paper has a more rough and matt surface. Moreover, the VOC's imported Chinese export porcelain and Japanese export porcelain wares are often depicted in many Dutch Golden Age genre paintings, especially in Jan Vermeer's paintings.
Formation of religious and ethnic groups within the VOC World
Contributions in the Age of Exploration
(...) The Dutch polity of the seventeenth century was famously unconcerned with territorial expansion: as long as the frontier operated effectively as a defensive shield, no extra land was deemed necessary.
The Dutch East India Company (VOC) was also a major force behind the Golden Age of Dutch exploration and discovery (c. 1590s–1720s). The VOC-funded exploratory voyages such as those led by Willem Janszoon (Duyfken), Henry Hudson (Halve Maen) and Abel Tasman revealed largely unknown landmasses to the civilised world. Also, during the Golden Age of Dutch/Netherlandish cartography (c. 1570s–1670s), VOC navigators, explorers, and cartographers[ae] helped shape cartographic and geographic knowledge of the modern-day world.
Halve Maen's exploratory voyage and role in the formation of New Netherland
In 1609, English sea captain and explorer Henry Hudson was hired by the VOC émigrés running the VOC located in Amsterdam to find a north-east passage to Asia, sailing around Scandinavia and Russia. He was turned back by the ice of the Arctic in his second attempt, so he sailed west to seek a north-west passage rather than return home. He ended up exploring the waters off the east coast of North America aboard the vlieboot Halve Maen. His first landfall was at Newfoundland and the second at Cape Cod.
Hudson believed that the passage to the Pacific Ocean was between the St. Lawrence River and Chesapeake Bay, so he sailed south to the Bay then turned northward, traveling close along the shore. He first discovered Delaware Bay and began to sail upriver looking for the passage. This effort was foiled by sandy shoals, and the Halve Maen continued north. After passing Sandy Hook, Hudson and his crew entered the narrows into the Upper New York Bay. (Unbeknownst to Hudson, the narrows had already been discovered in 1524 by explorer Giovanni da Verrazzano; today, the bridge spanning them is named after him.) Hudson believed that he had found the continental water route, so he sailed up the major river which later bore his name: the Hudson. He found the water too shallow to proceed several days later, at the site of present-day Troy, New York.
Upon returning to the Netherlands, Hudson reported that he had found a fertile land and an amicable people willing to engage his crew in small-scale bartering of furs, trinkets, clothes, and small manufactured goods. His report was first published in 1611 by Emanuel Van Meteren, an Antwerp émigré and the Dutch Consul at London. This stimulated interest in exploiting this new trade resource, and it was the catalyst for Dutch merchant-traders to fund more expeditions.
In 1611–12, the Admiralty of Amsterdam sent two covert expeditions to find a passage to China with the yachts Craen and Vos, captained by Jan Cornelisz Mey and Symon Willemsz Cat, respectively. In four voyages made between 1611 and 1614, the area between present-day Maryland and Massachusetts was explored, surveyed, and charted by Adriaen Block, Hendrick Christiaensen, and Cornelius Jacobsen Mey. The results of these explorations, surveys, and charts made from 1609 through 1614 were consolidated in Block's map, which used the name New Netherland for the first time.
VOC-sponsored Dutch discovery, exploration, and mapping of mainland Australia, Tasmania, New Zealand, and various islands
In terms of world history of geography and exploration, the VOC can be credited with putting most of Australia's coast (then Hollandia Nova and other names) on the world map, between 1606 and 1756. While Australia's territory (originally known as New Holland) never became an actual Dutch settlement or colony, Dutch navigators were the first to undisputedly explore and map Australian coastline. In the 17th century, the VOC's navigators and explorers charted almost three-quarters of Australia's coastline, except its east coast. The Dutch ship, Duyfken, led by Willem Janszoon, made the first documented European landing in Australia in 1606. Although a theory of Portuguese discovery in the 1520s exists, it lacks definitive evidence. Precedence of discovery has also been claimed for China, France, Spain, India,.
Hendrik Brouwer's discovery of the Brouwer Route, that sailing east from the Cape of Good Hope until land was sighted and then sailing north along the west coast of Australia was a much quicker route than around the coast of the Indian Ocean, made Dutch landfalls on the west coast inevitable. The first such landfall was in 1616, when Dirk Hartog landed at Cape Inscription on what is now known as Dirk Hartog Island, off the coast of Western Australia, and left behind an inscription on a pewter plate. In 1697 the Dutch captain Willem de Vlamingh landed on the island and discovered Hartog's plate. He replaced it with one of his own, which included a copy of Hartog's inscription, and took the original plate home to Amsterdam, where it is still kept in the Rijksmuseum Amsterdam.
In 1627, the VOC's explorers François Thijssen and Pieter Nuyts discovered the south coast of Australia and charted about 1,800 kilometres (1,100 mi) of it between Cape Leeuwin and the Nuyts Archipelago. François Thijssen, captain of the ship 't Gulden Zeepaert (The Golden Seahorse), sailed to the east as far as Ceduna in South Australia. The first known ship to have visited the area is the Leeuwin ("Lioness"), a Dutch vessel that charted some of the nearby coastline in 1622. The log of the Leeuwin has been lost, so very little is known of the voyage. However, the land discovered by the Leeuwin was recorded on a 1627 map by Hessel Gerritsz: Caert van't Landt van d'Eendracht ("Chart of the Land of Eendracht"), which appears to show the coast between present-day Hamelin Bay and Point D'Entrecasteaux. Part of Thijssen's map shows the islands St Francis and St Peter, now known collectively with their respective groups as the Nuyts Archipelago. Thijssen's observations were included as soon as 1628 by the VOC cartographer Hessel Gerritsz in a chart of the Indies and New Holland. This voyage defined most of the southern coast of Australia and discouraged the notion that "New Holland" as it was then known, was linked to Antarctica.
In 1642, Abel Tasman sailed from Mauritius and on 24 November, sighted Tasmania. He named Tasmania Anthoonij van Diemenslandt (Anglicised as Van Diemen's Land), after Anthony van Diemen, the VOC's Governor General, who had commissioned his voyage. It was officially renamed Tasmania in honour of its first European discoverer on 1 January 1856.
In 1642, during the same expedition, Tasman's crew discovered and charted New Zealand's coastline. They were the first Europeans known to reach New Zealand. Tasman anchored at the northern end of the South Island in Golden Bay / Mohua (he named it Murderers' Bay) in December 1642 and sailed northward to Tonga following a clash with local Māori. Tasman sketched sections of the two main islands' west coasts. Tasman called them Staten Landt, after the States General of the Netherlands, and that name appeared on his first maps of the country. In 1645 Dutch cartographers changed the name to Nova Zeelandia in Latin, from Nieuw Zeeland, after the Dutch province of Zeeland. It was subsequently Anglicised as New Zealand by James Cook. Various claims have been made that New Zealand was reached by other non-Polynesian voyagers before Tasman, but these are not widely accepted.
VOC-sponsored inland exploration and mapping of Southern Africa
This section needs expansion. You can help by adding to it. (August 2018)
One of the paradoxes of the Company [VOC] is that the Dutch were the most liberal and humane nation in Europe at that time, and yet they created in the Company a very efficient monstrosity. It should not be forgotten that the Netherlands at the time was a newly independent nation, in true existential peril from their former Spanish masters, who committed a number of atrocities on Dutch soil. In this situation the Netherlands needed the huge monopoly profits promised by Jan Pieterszoon Coen's vision for the Company, which entailed not only shutting out other European powers with violence, but even dominating trade among the Asians themselves.
The company has been criticised for its quasi-absolute commercial monopoly, colonialism, exploitation (including use of slave labour), slave trade, use of violence, environmental destruction (including deforestation), and overly bureaucratic in organisational structure.
Colonialism, monopoly and violence
This section needs expansion. You can help by adding to it. (August 2018)
Your Honours know by experience that trade in Asia must be driven and maintained under the protection and favour of Your Honours' own weapons, and that the weapons must be paid for by the profits from the trade; so that we cannot carry on trade without war nor war without trade.
Dutch slave trade and slavery under the VOC colonial rule
By the time the settlement was established at the Cape in 1652, the VOC already had a long experience of practicing slavery in the East Indies. Jan van Riebeeck concluded within two months of the establishment of the Cape settlement that slave labor would be needed for the hardest and dirtiest work. Initially, the VOC considered enslaving men from the indigenous Khoikhoi population, but the idea was rejected on the grounds that such a policy would be both costly and dangerous. Most Khoikhoi had chosen not to labor for the Dutch because of low wages and harsh conditions. In the beginning, the settlers traded with the Khoikhoi but the harsh working conditions and low wages imposed by the Dutch led to a series of wars. The European population remained under 200 during the settlement's first five years, and war against neighbors numbering more than 20,000 would have been foolhardy. Moreover, the Dutch feared that Khoikhoi people, if enslaved, could always escape into the local community, whereas foreigners would find it much more difficult to elude their "masters."
Between 1652 and 1657, a number of unsuccessful attempts were made to obtain men from the Dutch East Indies and from Mauritius. In 1658, however, the VOC landed two shiploads of slaves at the Cape, one containing more than 200 people brought from Dahomey (later Benin), the second with almost 200 people, most of them children, captured from a Portuguese slaver off the coast of Angola. Except for a few individuals, these were to be the only slaves ever brought to the Cape from West Africa. From 1658 to the end of the company's rule, many more slaves were brought regularly to the Cape in various ways, chiefly by Company-sponsored slaving voyages and slaves brought to the Cape by its return fleets. From these sources and by natural growth, the slave population increased from zero in 1652 to about 1,000 by 1700. During the 18th century, the slave population increased dramatically to 16,839 by 1795. After the slave trade was initiated, all of the slaves imported into the Cape until the British stopped the trade in 1807 were from East Africa, Mozambique, Madagascar, and South and Southeast Asia. Large numbers were brought from Ceylon and the Indonesian archipelago. Prisoners from other countries in the VOC's empire were also enslaved. The slave population, which exceeded that of the European settlers until the first quarter of the nineteenth century, was overwhelmingly male and was thus dependent on constant imports of new slaves to maintain and to augment its size.
By the 1660s the Cape settlement was importing slaves from Ceylon, Malaya (Malaysia), and Madagascar to work on the farms. Conflict between Dutch farmers and Khoikhoi broke out once it became clear to the latter that the Dutch were there to stay and that they intended to encroach on the lands of the pastoralists. In 1659 Doman, a Khoikhoi who had worked as a translator for the Dutch and had even traveled to Java, led an armed attempt to expel the Dutch from the Cape peninsula. The attempt was a failure, although warfare dragged on until an inconclusive peace was established a year later. During the following decade, pressure on the Khoikhoi grew as more of the Dutch became free burghers, expanded their landholdings, and sought pastureland for their growing herds. War broke out again in 1673 and continued until 1677, when Khoikhoi resistance was destroyed by a combination of superior European weapons and Dutch manipulation of divisions among the local people. Thereafter, Khoikhoi society in the western Cape disintegrated. Some people found jobs as shepherds on European farms; others rejected foreign rule and moved away from the Cape. The final blow for most came in 1713 when a Dutch ship brought smallpox to the Cape. Hitherto unknown locally, the disease ravaged the remaining Khoikhoi, killing 90 percent of the population. Throughout the eighteenth century, the settlement continued to expand through internal growth of the European population and the continued importation of slaves. The approximately 3,000 Europeans and slaves at the Cape in 1700 had increased by the end of the century to nearly 20,000 Europeans, and approximately 25,000 slaves.
- Batavia: a shipwreck on the Houtman Abrolhos in 1629, made famous by the subsequent mutiny and massacre that took place among the survivors
- Flying Dutchman: a legendary ghost ship in several maritime myths, likely to have originated from the 17th-century golden age of the VOC.
- Hansken: a female Asian elephant from Dutch Ceylon. The young elephant Hansken was brought to Amsterdam in 1637, aboard a VOC ship. Dutch Golden Age artist Rembrandt made some historical drawings of Hansken.
- Batavia, Dutch East Indies: 1650s/1660s paintings of scenes from everyday life by Dutch Golden Age painter Andries Beeckman, one of the few painters who travelled to the Dutch East Indies in the 17th century.
- Cosmos: A Personal Voyage: in the 6th episode Travellers' Tales of the popular documentary TV series Cosmos (1980), American astronomer Carl Sagan, who also served as host, took a look at the voyage to Jupiter and Saturn, and compared these events with the adventuring spirit of the Dutch Golden Age explorers (including the VOC's navigators).
- The Sino-Dutch War 1661: 2000 Chinese historical drama film. The film is loosely based on the life of Koxinga (Zheng Chenggong) and focuses on his battle with the VOC for control of Dutch Formosa at the Siege of Fort Zeelandia.
- Ocean's Twelve: a 2004 American comedy heist film inspired by the historical story from the VOC's IPO and the first shares of stock ever traded publicly in history. The VOC's stock certificate is the focused heist by the burglars in the movie.
- The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet, 2010 historical novel by British author David Mitchell.
- My Father's Islands: Abel Tasman's Heroic Voyages: a 2012 juvenile fiction by Christobel Mattingley, written from the perspective of Tasman's young daughter, Claesgen. The fictional story was inspired by a 1637 painting of the Tasman family by the Dutch Golden Age painter Jacob Gerritsz. Cuyp, one of the treasures of the National Library of Australia.
- The Tsar-Carpenter: a cultural depiction of Tsar Peter the Great (Peter I of Russia) in his undercover visit to the Dutch Republic as part of the Grand Embassy mission (1697–1698). When Peter the Great wanted to learn more about the Dutch Republic's sea power, he came to study seamanship, shipbuilding industry and carpentry in Amsterdam and Zaandam (Saardam).[ag] Through the agency of Nicolaas Witsen, mayor of Amsterdam and an expert on Russia, Tsar Peter I worked as a ship's carpenter in the VOC's shipyards in Holland.
- Megacorporation or mega-corporation: a quasi-fictional term/concept derived from the combination of the prefix mega- with the word corporation, possibly inspired by the VOC's history. It refers to a (quasi-fictional) corporation that is a massive conglomerate, possessing quasi-governmental powers and holding monopolistic control over markets.
- Black swan theory: a metaphor or metatheory of science popularized by Nassim Nicholas Taleb. It was possibly inspired by Willem de Vlamingh's 1697 discovery. De Vlamingh was the first known European/Western to observe and describe black swans and quokkas, in Western Australia.
VOC World etymologies
Places and things named after the VOC, its people and properties (VOC World eponyms)
- Dutch East India Company (VOC): 10649 VOC (minor planet); VOC-mentality ("VOC-mentaliteit" in Dutch, coined in 2006 by Jan Pieter Balkenende)
- Arnhem (VOC ship): Arnhem Land (Arnhems Landt), Cape Arnhem
- Willem Blaeu: 10652 Blaeu (minor planet)
- Willem Bontekoe: 10654 Bontekoe (minor planet)
- Hendrik Brouwer: Brouwer Route
- Pieter de Carpentier: Gulf of Carpentaria
- Jan Carstenszoon: Mount Carstensz; Carstensz Pyramid; Carstensz Glacier
- George Clifford III: Musa Cliffortiana, Hortus Cliffortianus
- Jan Pieterszoon Coen: Coen River
- Anthony van Diemen: Anthoonij van Diemenslandt (Van Diemen's Land); Van Diemen Gulf
- Maria van Diemen:[ah] Maria Island; Cape Maria van Diemen
- Hendrik Adriaan van Rheede tot Drakenstein: Drakenstein (mountain ranges), Drakenstein (local municipality), Rheedia (Rheedia aristata), Rheedia edulis
- Robert Jacob Gordon: Gordon's Bay
- Cornelis Jacob van de Graaff: Graaff-Reinet[ai]
- Dirk Hartog: Dirk Hartog Island; Hartog's Plate
- Wiebbe Hayes: Wiebbe Hayes Stone Fort
- Frederick de Houtman: Houtman Abrolhos; 10650 Houtman (minor planet)
- Henry Hudson: Hudson River; Hudson Valley; Hudson Bay
- Engelbert Kaempfer: Kaempferia (Kaempferia elegans, Kaempferia galanga, Kaempferia parviflora, Kaempferia rotunda)
- François Levaillant: Levaillant's cisticola, Levaillant's cuckoo, Levaillant's parrot, Levaillant's woodpecker
- Cornelis van der Lijn: Vanderlin Island
- Joan Maetsuycker: Maatsuyker Islands; Maatsuyker Island
- Johan Maurits Mohr: 5494 Johanmohr (minor planet)
- Pieter Nuyts: Nuyts Archipelago; Nuyts Land District; Nuytsia (Nuytsia floribunda)
- Francisco Pelsaert: Pelsaert Island; Pelsaert Group
- Petrus Plancius: Planciusdalen; Planciusbukta; 10648 Plancius (minor planet)
- Jan van Riebeeck: Riebeeckstad; Riebeek East; Riebeek West; Riebeek-Kasteel; Riebeeckosaurus
- Georg Eberhard Rumphius: Avicennia rumphiana, Caryota rumphiana, Musa rumphiana, Quadrula rumphiana
- Joost Schouten: Schouten Island
- Leeuwin (VOC ship): Cape Leeuwin
- Simon van der Stel: Simonstad (Simon's Town); Stellenbosch
- Hendrik Swellengrebel: Swellendam
- Salomon Sweers: Sweers Island
- Abel Tasman: Tasmania; Tasman Sea; Tasman Bay / Te Tai-o-Aorere; Tasman River; Mount Tasman; Tasman Highway; Tasman Bridge; Abel Tasman National Park; Tasman District; Tasmanian devil
- Jacob Temminck: Temminck's courser
- Carl Peter Thunberg: Thunbergia (Thunbergia alata, Thunbergia annua, Thunbergia erecta, Thunbergia fragrans, Thunbergia grandiflora, Thunbergia gregorii, Thunbergia laurifolia, Thunbergia mysorensis, Thunbergia natalensis); Allium thunbergii; Amaranthus thunbergii; Berberis thunbergii; Geranium thunbergii; Lespedeza thunbergii; Pinus thunbergii; Spiraea thunbergii
- Maarten Gerritsz Vries: Vries Strait
- Nicolaes Witsen: 10653 Witsen (minor planet)
- Wesel (VOC ship): Wessel Islands
Places and things named by VOC people
- Arnhem Land (Australia)
- De Witt Island (Tasmania, Australia)
- Groote Eylandt (Australia)
- Kaapstad / Cape Town (South Africa)
- Moordenaers Baij / Murderers Bay (New Zealand), by Abel Tasman
- Nova Hollandia / Nieuw Holland / New Holland (Mainland Australia), by Abel Tasman
- Nova Zeelandia / Nieuw Zeeland / New Zealand, by VOC cartographers
- Oranjerivier / Orange River (South Africa), by Robert Jacob Gordon
- Pedra Branca (Tasmania), by Abel Tasman
- Eylandt Rottenest / Rottnest Island, by Willem de Vlamingh
- St Francis Island / Eyland St. François (South Australia), by Pieter Nuyts and François Thijssen
- St Peter Island / Eyland St. Pierre (South Australia), by Pieter Nuyts and François Thijssen
- Swarte Swaene-Revier / Zwaanenrivier / Swan River (Australia), by Willem de Vlamingh
Populated places established by VOC people
- Batavia (Dutch East Indies), modern-day Jakarta
- Tainan, the oldest urban area in Taiwan, located in southern-western Taiwan
- Kaohsiung (formerly known as Takao or Dagao), located in southern-western Taiwan
- Kaapstad (Cape Town), the oldest urban area in South Africa and one of the first permanent European settlements in Sub-Saharan Africa. Constantia (Cape Town's suburb) is considered one of the oldest wine-producing regions in the Southern Hemisphere.
- Stellenbosch, the second oldest urban area (town) in South Africa
- Swellendam, the third oldest urban area (town) in South Africa
- Graaff-Reinet, the fourth oldest urban area (town) in South Africa
- Franschhoek, a town in the Western Cape Province, South Africa
- Paarl, the third oldest European settlement in South Africa and the largest town in the Cape Winelands
- Simonstad (Simon's Town), a town near Cape Town, South Africa
- Dutch Mauritius, the first permanent human settlement ever in Mauritius[ak]
Important heritage sites in the VOC World
- Netherlands: Amsterdam (the VOC's global headquarters); Zaandam (one of the world's earliest known industrialized areas and the VOC's shipbuilding centre)
- Indonesia: Kota Tua Jakarta/Jakarta Old Town, the VOC's second headquarters and de facto administrative centre
- Sri Lanka: Galle, a UNESCO World Heritage Site
- South Africa: Western Cape (Cape Town; Stellenbosch; Swellendam; Franschhoek; Paarl), the first urban areas to be established in South Africa
- Taiwan: Tainan, the first urban area to be established in Taiwan
- Japan: Nagasaki (Hirado & Dejima)
- Malaysia: Malacca, a UNESCO World Heritage Site
- Australia: Western Australia (Dirk Hartog Island & Houtman Abrolhos)
Buildings and structures
- Forts: Batavia Castle (Jakarta, Indonesia); Fort Rotterdam (Makassar, Indonesia); Castle of Good Hope (Cape Town, South Africa); Galle Fort (Galle, Sri Lanka); Batticaloa Fort (Batticaloa, Sri Lanka); Fort Zeelandia (Anping District, Tainan, Taiwan)
- Others: Oost-Indisch Huis (Amsterdam, Netherlands); Christ Church (Malacca City, Malaysia); Stadthuys (Malacca City, Malaysia)
Archives and records
The VOC's operations (trading posts and colonies) produced not only warehouses packed with spices, coffee, tea, textiles, porcelain and silk, but also shiploads of documents. Data on political, economic, cultural, religious, and social conditions spread over an enormous area circulated between the VOC establishments, the administrative centre of the trade in Batavia (modern-day Jakarta), and the board of directors (the Heeren XVII/Gentlemen Seventeen) in the Dutch Republic. The VOC records are included in UNESCO's Memory of the World Register.
Field of VOC World studies
The Dutch East India Company (VOC), as a historical transcontinental company-state, is one of the best expertly researched business enterprises in history. For almost 200 years of the company's existence (1602–1800), the VOC had effectively transformed itself from a corporate entity into a state, an empire, or even a world in its own right. The VOC World (i.e. networks of people, places, things, activities, and events associated with the Dutch East India Company) has been the subject of a vast amount of literature, including works of fiction and non-fiction. VOC World studies (often included within a broader field of early-modern Dutch global world studies) is an international multidisciplinary field focused on social, cultural, religious, scientific, technological, economic, financial, business, maritime, military, political, legal, diplomatic activities, organization and administration of the VOC and its colourful world. As North & Kaufmann (2014) notes, "the Dutch East India Company (VOC) has long attracted the attention of scholarship. Its lengthy history, widespread enterprises, and the survival of massive amounts of documentation – literally 1,200 meters of essays pertaining to the VOC may be found in the National Archives in The Hague, and many more documents are scattered in archives throughout Asia and in South Africa – have stimulated many works on economic and social history. Important publications have also appeared on the trade, shipping, institutional organization, and administration of the VOC. Much has also been learned about the VOC and Dutch colonial societies. Moreover, the TANAP (Towards a New Age of Partnership, 2000–2007) project has created momentum for research on the relationship between the VOC and indigenous societies. In contrast, the role of the VOC in cultural history and especially in the history of visual and material culture has not yet attracted comparable interest. To be sure, journals and other travel accounts (some even with illustrations) by soldiers, shippers, and VOC officials among others have been utilized as sources." VOC scholarship is highly specialized in general, such as archaeological studies of the VOC World. Some of the notable VOC historians/scholars include Sinnappah Arasaratnam, Leonard Blussé, Peter Borschberg, Charles Ralph Boxer, Jaap R. Bruijn, Femme Gaastra, Om Prakash, and Nigel Worden.
VOC World archaeology
VOC timeline and historical firsts in the VOC World
The publication of the Theatrum Orbis Terrarum by Abraham Ortelius in 1570 marked the official beginning of the Golden Age of Netherlandish cartography (c. 1570s–1670s). In the Golden Age of Dutch exploration and discovery (c. 1590s–1720s), the Dutch Republic's seafarers and explorers (including the VOC's navigators) became the first non-natives to undisputedly discover, explore and map coastlines of the Australian continent (including Mainland Australia, Tasmania, and their surrounding islands), New Zealand, Tonga, and Fiji.
- 1579: Establishment of the Union of Utrecht as the foundation of the Republic of the Seven United Provinces (or the Dutch Republic).
- 1580: Establishment of the Iberian Union (1580–1640) by Philip II, King of Spain and Lord of the Seventeen Provinces of the Netherlands (Heer der Nederlanden in Dutch).
- 1581: Act of Abjuration.
- 1585: Fall of Antwerp.
- 1594–1598: Establishment of the Compagnie van Verre, one of the forerunners (or the so-called voorcompagnieën/pre-companies) of the United East India Company (VOC).
- 1595–1597: First systematic mapping of the far southern sky in history of celestial cartography (12 Dutch-created southern constellations). In the first Dutch expedition to the East Indies, Dutch navigators Pieter Dirkszoon Keyser and Frederick de Houtman introduced and listed the 12 new southern constellations (including Apus, Chamaeleon, Dorado, Grus, Hydrus, Indus, Musca, Pavo, Phoenix, Triangulum Australe, Tucana, and Volans). These 12 southern constellations first appeared on a 35-cm diameter celestial globe published in 1597/1598 in Amsterdam by Petrus Plancius (one of the founders of the Dutch East India Company) and Jodocus Hondius.
- 1596: Dutch explorer Willem Barentsz and his crew became the firsts to undisputedly discover and chart the Svalbard archipelago while searching for the Northern Sea Route (Northeast Passage) to the Far East.
- 1596: The publication of Jan Huygen van Linschoten's Itinerario in Amsterdam opened the Indian Ocean world for the European geographical imagination. Van Linschoten is credited with publishing in Europe important classified information about Asian trade and navigation that was hidden by the Iberian great powers (the Spanish Empire and Portuguese Empire).
- 1598–1600: Second Dutch expedition to the East Indies.
- 1599–1602: Establishment of the Brabantsche Compagnie, one of the forerunners (voorcompagnieën/pre-companies) of the United East India Company (VOC).
- 1600: Establishment of the British East India Company (1600–1874).
- 1602: On 20 March, the United East Indies Company/United East India Company (Vereenigde Oost-Indische Compagnie, or VOC in Dutch), often referred to by the British as the Dutch East India Company, the world's first true transnational corporation, was originally established as a chartered company. The company was founded from a government-directed consolidation/amalgamation of the so-called Voorcompagnieën (or pre-companies). The VOC was the first joint-stock company to get a fixed capital stock and the first recorded (public) company ever to pay regular dividends.
- 1603: Van Heemskerck's capture of Portuguese carrack Santa Catarina.
- 1606: The first (undisputed) documented European sighting of and landing on the Australian continent (Nova Hollandia) by the VOC navigator Willem Janszoon aboard the Duyfken.
- 1608–1825: Establishment of Dutch Coromandel by the VOC.
- 1609–1621: Twelve Years' Truce.
- 1609: The VOC ship Halve Maen's exploratory voyage, a milestone in the history of New York (including New York City) and North America. English explorer Henry Hudson, in the employ of the VOC, sailed the Halve Maen through the Narrows into Upper New York Bay. He was looking for a westerly passage to the Far East.
- 1609: Dutch jurist Hugo Grotius wrote Mare Liberum, a foundational treatise on modern international law of the sea, while being a counsel to the Dutch East India Company (VOC) over the seizing of the Santa Catarina Portuguese carrack issue.
- 1609: The first recorded corporate governance dispute, took place on 24 January (1609) between the shareholders/investors (most notably Isaac Le Maire) and directors of the VOC.
- 1609: The first recorded short seller in history, Isaac Le Maire, a sizeable shareholder of the VOC.
- 1609: Establishment of the Bank of Amsterdam (Amsterdamsche Wisselbank in Dutch), arguably the world's first central bank.
- 1610: An early mechanism of financial regulation practice was the first recorded ban on short selling, by the Dutch authorities.
- 1611: The world's first official/formal stock exchange (Amsterdam Stock Exchange, or Beurs van Hendrick de Keyser in Dutch) and stock market were launched by the VOC in Amsterdam.
- 1611: The VOC was the first corporation to be ever actually listed on an official/formal stock exchange. In other words, the VOC was the world's first formally listed public company (or publicly listed company).
- 1611: Discovery of the Brouwer Route by the VOC navigator Hendrik Brouwer.
- 1616: The VOC navigator Dirk Hartog made the first recorded European landing on the west coast of the Australian continent.
- 1616: Hartog Plate, the first known European artefact found on Australian soil (Dirk Hartog Island).
- 1616–1825: Establishment of Dutch Suratte by the VOC.
- 1616: Establishment of the Danish East India Company (1616–1729).
- 1619: Establishment of Batavia at the site of the razed city of Jayakarta by the VOC.
- 1619: Batavia Castle (Kasteel van Batavia in Dutch) was built by the VOC.
- 1621: Establishment of the Dutch West India Company (WIC/GWIC in Dutch).
- 1622: On 24 January, Amsterdam-based businessman Isaac Le Maire filed a petition against the VOC, marking the first recorded expression of shareholder activism or shareholder rebellion.
- 1623: Amboyna massacre.
- 1624–1634: Fort Zeelandia/Fort Anping (Dutch Formosa) was built by the VOC.
- 1624–1662: Tainan (Dutch Formosa), the first urban area to be established in Taiwan.
- 1627–1825: Establishment of Dutch Bengal by the VOC.
- 1627: The VOC explorers François Thijssen and Pieter Nuyts made the first recorded European landing on the south coast of the Australian continent and charted about 1,800 kilometres of it between Cape Leeuwin and the Nuyts Archipelago.
- 1628: Establishment of the Portuguese East India Company (1628–1633).
- 1629: Wiebbe Hayes Stone Fort (West Wallabi Island), the first known European structure to be built on the Australian continent. It was built by survivors of the Batavia shipwreck and massacre.
- 1636: Lamey Island Massacre.
- 1636: Beginnings of the recorded history of education in Taiwan.
- 1636–1637: Tulip mania, generally considered to be the first recorded economic bubble (or speculative bubble) in history. Early stock market bubbles and crashes also have their roots in financial activities of the Dutch East India Company and Dutch Republic.
- 1637: Hansken, a young female Asian elephant from Dutch Ceylon, was brought to Amsterdam in 1637, aboard a VOC ship. Dutch Golden Age artist Rembrandt made some historical drawings of Hansken.
- 1638–1710: Dutch Mauritius, the first permanent human settlement to be established in Mauritius.
- 1640–1796: Establishment of Dutch Ceylon by the VOC.
- 1641–1825: Establishment of Dutch Malacca by the VOC.
- 1641–1853: Beginnings of Rangaku (first phase: 1641–1720). After 1641, the VOC businessmen were the only Western allowed to trade with or to enter isolated Japan.
- 1642: The VOC explorer Abel Tasman discovered, explored, and charted Tasmania and its neighboring islands. He named Tasmania Anthoonij van Diemenslandt (Anglicised as Van Diemen's Land), after Anthony van Diemen, the Dutch East India Company's Governor General, who had commissioned his voyage.
- 1642: On 13 December, Abel Tasman's VOC crew were the first non-natives known to discover, explore and chart New Zealand's coastline (Nova Zeelandia).
- 1643: The VOC's navigator Maarten Gerritsz Vries became the first recorded European to explore and map Vries Strait.
- 1643: Trịnh–Nguyễn War.
- 1643–1644: Cambodian–Dutch War.
- 1646: Battles of La Naval de Manila.
- 1648: Peace of Westphalia.
- 1652–1654: First Anglo-Dutch War.
- 1652–1806: Kaapstad (Cape Town), the first urban area to be established in South Africa.
- 1653–1666: The VOC bookkeeper Hendrick Hamel was the first known non-Asian to experience first-hand and write about Joseon-era Korea (often referred to as the "Hermit Kingdom").
- 1659: Beginnings of the South African wine industry.
- 1659–1677: Khoikhoi–Dutch Wars.
- 1660: King Charles II of England sailed from Breda to Delft in a yacht owned by the VOC. HMY Mary and HMY Bezan (both were built by the VOC) were given to Charles II, on the restoration of the monarchy, as part of the Dutch Gift.
- 1661–1795: Establishment of Dutch Malabar by the VOC.
- 1662: The publication of Johannes Blaeu's Atlas Maior (first edition) in Amsterdam. Johannes Blaeu (also known as Joan Blaeu), like his father Willem Blaeu, was an official cartographer to the VOC. Along with Abraham Ortelius's Theatrum Orbis Terrarum (1570), the Atlas Maior (1662–65) is widely considered a masterpiece of the Golden Age of Netherlandish cartography (also known as the Golden Age of Dutch cartography).
- 1664: Establishment of the French East India Company (1664–1794).
- 1665–1667: Second Anglo-Dutch War.
- 1665: Battle of Vågen, in August 1665 as part of the Second Anglo-Dutch War.
- 1666–1679: The Castle of Good Hope, the oldest surviving building in South Africa, was built by the VOC.
- 1672–1674: Third Anglo-Dutch War.
- 1672–1678: Franco-Dutch War.
- 1679: Stellenbosch, the second oldest urban area (town) in South Africa, was founded in 1679 by the Governor of the Dutch Cape Colony Simon van der Stel.
- 1680: Establishment of Simonstad (Simon's Town), a town near Cape Town.
- 1688–1689: The first large-scale emigration of Huguenots to the Dutch Cape Colony (modern-day Western Cape, South Africa).
- 1688: Establishment of Franschhoek, a town in the Western Cape Province, in 1688 by Huguenots.
- 1688: After observing and analyzing the workings of the VOC-lead Dutch stock market, Amsterdam-based businessman Joseph de la Vega published Confusion de Confusiones, the earliest known book about stock trading and first book on the inner workings of the stock market (including the stock exchange) in its modern sense. The publication of Confusion de Confusiones (1688) helped lay the foundations for modern fields of technical analysis and behavioral finance.
- 1696: The VOC introduced coffee cultivation to Southeast Asia and the Far East in general.
- 1697: European discovery of black swans for the first time in history, by the VOC navigator Willem de Vlamingh.
- 1697: In his undercover visit to the Dutch Republic as part of the Grand Embassy mission (1697–98), Tsar Peter I of Russia (Peter the Great) worked incognito as a ship's carpenter at the VOC's shipyards in Amsterdam and Zaandam/Saardam, for a period of four months.
- 1704–1708: First Javanese War of Succession.
- 1712: The wreck of VOC ship Zuytdorp on the Western Australian coast.
- 1719–1723: Second Javanese War of Succession.
- 1722: In the service of the Dutch West India Company (WIC/GWIC), Dutch explorer Jacob Roggeveen and his crew were arrested for violating the monopoly of the VOC and sent back to the Dutch Republic almost as prisoners on ships of the VOC, the rivals of the Dutch West India Company.
- 1731: Establishment of the Swedish East India Company (1731–1813).
- 1740: Batavia massacre.
- 1746: Establishment of Swellendam, the third oldest urban area (town) in South Africa.
- 1749–1757: Third Javanese War of Succession.
- 1766: Meermin slave mutiny.
- 1780–1784: Fourth Anglo-Dutch War.
A replica of the VOC vessel Batavia (1620–29)
Anonymous painting with Table Mountain in the background, 1762
Sword of the East India Company, featuring the V.O.C. monogram of the guard. On display at the Musée de l'Armée in Paris.
Frontispiece from Voyage dans l'intérieur de l'Afrique by François Levaillant
Flag of the Amsterdam Chamber of the Dutch East Indies Company
Later Flag of the Dutch East Indies, after Dutch East India Company is dissolved
Other trading companies in the Age of Sail
- The Muscovy Company
- The Levant Company
- The British East India Company
- The Danish East India Company
- The Dutch West India Company
- The Portuguese East India Company
- The French East India Company
- The Danish West India Company
- The Hudson's Bay Company
- The Mississippi Company
- The South Sea Company
- The Ostend Company
- The Swedish East India Company
- The Emden Company
- The Austrian East India Company
- The Swedish West India Company
- The Russian-American Company
- The direct translation of the Dutch name Verenigde Oost-Indische Compagnie is "United East-India Company". For the VOC's different English-language trade names, see articles: East India companies; Greater India; East India; East Indies; Dutch East Indies; Dutch India; Voorcompagnie; List of Dutch East India Company trading posts and settlements.
- Historically, the Dutch East India Company was a multinational proto-conglomerate (including international trade, shipbuilding, spice production and trade, sugarcane industry, wine industry) rather than a pure trading company or shipping company.
- The so-called voorcompagnieën (or pre-companies) include: Compagnie van Verre (Amsterdam, 1594–1598), Nieuwe Compagnie, Eerste Verenigde Compagnie op Oost-Indië (Amsterdam, 1598–1601), Oude Oost-Indische Compagnie (Amsterdam, 1598–1601), Verenigde Amsterdamse Compagnie, Nieuwe of Tweede Compagnie, Brabantsche Compagnie, Nieuwe Brabantsche Compagnie, Magelhaensche Compagnie/Rotterdamse Compagnie, Middelburgse Compagnie, Veerse Compagnie (Zeeland, 1597), Verenigde Zeeuwse Compagnie (Middelburg & Veere, 1600), Compagnie van De Moucheron (Zeeland, 1600), and Delftse Vennootschap. Niels Steensgaard (The Asian Trade Revolution of the Seventeenth Century, 1973) notes, "the voorcompagnieën were not incorporated, but were run by a number of bewindhebbers, who were joined together like partners in a simple company, i.e. traded on joint account".
- As the VOC's board of directors
- As the VOC's de facto chief executives
- Edward Stringham (2015) notes: "Companies with transferable shares date back to classical Rome, but these were usually not enduring endeavors and no considerable secondary market existed (Neal, 1997, p. 61)."
- A public company, called a publicly traded company, publicly held company, or public corporation. A public company can be listed company (publicly listed company) or unlisted company (unlisted public company).
- The concept of the bourse (or the exchange) was historically 'invented' (in medieval Bruges) before the birth of formal stock exchanges in the 17th century. Before the VOC era, in terms of historical role, a bourse was not exactly a stock exchange in its modern sense. With the establishment of the Dutch East India Company (VOC) and the rise of Dutch capital markets in the early 1600s, the 'old' bourse (a place to trade commodities, municipal and government bonds) found a new purpose – a formal exchange that specialize in creating and sustaining secondary markets in the securities (such as bonds and shares of stock) issued by corporations – or a modern stock exchange as we know it today.
- As Remco Raben (2013) noted, "The concept of a 'VOC World', although implicit in many studies on early modern Dutch ventures in Asia, has received little attention and even less discussion. The term was used most prominently in Nigel Worden (ed.), Contingent Lives: Social Identity and Material Culture in the VOC World (Rondebosch 2007). ... The webbed character of the VOC World deserves further enquiry. This world should not be conceived as a firmly limited space of interaction or as exclusively 'Dutch'. Both the linkages between various VOC settlements as well as those to the worlds beyond should be taken into account, as the VOC created patterns of transport and safe spaces that facilitated the exchange of knowledge, goods and people. ... All kinds of persons and groups participated in or made use of the VOC World, forming their own webs. One example are knowledge networks, which have become a topic of research only fairly recently. Another strong case are the networks of exiles as described by Kerry Ward in her aptly titled Networks of Empire ..."
- About the VOC's exemplary role as a historical company-state (or a 'CorporNation' as dubbed by Adam Hanft
- For the pioneering roles of the Dutch Republic and the VOC in history of modern capitalism,
- A transnational corporation differs from a traditional multinational corporation in that it does not identify itself with one national home. While traditional multinational corporations are national companies with foreign subsidiaries, transnational corporations spread out their operations in many countries sustaining high levels of local responsiveness. An example of a transnational corporation is the Royal Dutch Shell corporation whose headquarters may be in The Hague (Netherlands) but its registered office and main executive body is headquartered in London, United Kingdom. Another example of a transnational corporation is Nestlé who employ senior executives from many countries and try to make decisions from a global perspective rather than from one centralized headquarters. While the VOC established its main administrative center, as the second headquarters, in Batavia (Dutch East Indies, 1610–1800), the company's global headquarters was in Amsterdam (Dutch Republic). Also, the company had important operations elsewhere.
- Robert Shiller (2011): "...[O]ne very important moment in the history of finance: when the first real important stock was invented. (...) They [the Dutch] did create one company that did have limited liability. So what that meant was, you could invest in this company, and it's just a game, you know? I can't lose more than I put into it. And if these guys turn out to be crooks and some of them are hanged for their crimes, no problem with me, because I'm an innocent investor. (...) So, it created a tremendous opportunity. It was talked about, because the stock price went up and up and up, and it made people rich who invested in it. But it was also very volatile. It went up and down. People had never seen anything like this before, because nothing was so actively traded, and had such an interesting story that you could change your mind about from one day to the next. Anyway, I didn't want just tell stories. This is a story, though, that illustrates our last lecture. It was a breakthrough innovation. It was a kind of gambling, but not gambling. It was gambling on real things. And so, you know, people like to gamble, but, you know, it's usually a waste of their time. This is not a waste time. This was setting up trading around the world. And so, it was important, it was a very important innovation. (...) And it was an invention, kind of a social invention. I'm thinking, it's kind of analogous. We have recent inventions that we think about, the social media. We have, you know, Facebook and other recent inventions. This was an invention like that. It was an invention that got people together and communicating and excited about something. And it created a sort of a game that people were playing that turned out to be productive. That's why it was copied all over the world. So, the core concepts, which began in Holland in 1609, are everywhere now. Every country of the world has this."
- It was also the Dutch financial innovations that helped lay the foundations for the financial system of the modern world, especially in corporate finance, and greatly influenced the financial history of English-speaking countries, especially the United Kingdom and United States.
- Eric Michael Wilson (2008) notes: "(...) the first wholly cognisable modern limited liability public company was the VOC. The organisational structures and corporate practices of the VOC were closely paralleled by the English East India Company and served as the direct model for all of the later mercantile trading companies of the second cycle, including those of Italy, France, Portugal, Denmark, and Brandenburg-Prussia."
- In terms of historical importance, overall influence (including institutional innovations), power, size, competitive capability (profitability), and wealth of the VOC.
- About the relationship between the stock market and capitalism (modern capitalism in particular), American economist Murray Rothbard (2006) discussed: “Even in the days before perestroika, socialism was never a monolith. Within the Communist countries, the spectrum of socialism ranged from the quasi-market, quasi-syndicalist system of Yugoslavia to the centralized totalitarianism of neighboring Albania. One time I asked Professor von Mises, the great expert on the economics of socialism, at what point on this spectrum of statism would he designate a country as "socialist" or not. At that time, I wasn't sure that any definite criterion existed to make that sort of clear-cut judgment. And so I was pleasantly surprised at the clarity and decisiveness of Mises's answer. "A stock market," he answered promptly. "A stock market is crucial to the existence of capitalism and private property. For it means that there is a functioning market in the exchange of private titles to the means of production. There can be no genuine private ownership of capital without a stock market: there can be no true socialism if such a market is allowed to exist."”
- Mark Smith (2003) notes: "The first joint-stock companies had actually been created in England in the sixteenth century. These early joint-stock firms, however, possessed only temporary charters from the government, in some cases for one voyage only. (One example was the Muscovy Company, chartered in England in 1533 for trade with Russia; another, chartered the same year, was a company with the intriguing title Guinea Adventurers.) The Dutch East India Company was the first joint-stock company to have a permanent charter."
- Wu Wei Neng (2012) noted: "17th century Amsterdam was the world's first modern financial centre – the city hall, Wisselbank, Beurs (stock exchange), Korenbeurs (commodities exchange), major insurance, brokerage and trading companies were located within a few blocks of each other, along with coffee houses which served as informal trading floors and exchanges that facilitated deal-making. Financial innovations such as maritime insurance, retirement pensions, annuities, futures and options, transnational securities listings, mutual funds and modern investment banking had their genesis in 17th and 18th century Amsterdam."
- Jan Peter Balkenende: "Ik begrijp niet waarom u er zo negatief en vervelend over doet. Laten we blij zijn met elkaar. Laten we zeggen: 'Nederland kan het weer!', die VOC-mentaliteit. Over grenzen heen kijken! Dynamiek! Toch?" [Original in Dutch, loosely translated from footage]
- As Gelderblom, de Jong, and Jonker (2010) noted: "...The gradual articulation of governing large partnerships was taken a step further by the First United East India Company (Eerste Verenigde Compagnie op Oost-Indië), formed by a merger between Amsterdam's Oude Compagnie and a venture run by Flemish immigrants, the Nieuwe Compagnie, in 1601. (...) In 1597 Van Oldenbarnevelt started pushing for a consolidation because the continuing competition threatened to compromise the Dutch fight against Spain and Portugal in Asia (Den Heijer 2005, 41). The companies of Middelburg and Veere followed the Amsterdam example and merged into one Verenigde Zeeuwse Compagnie in 1600. The idea for a merger between the all companies, first considered in 1599, then reappeared, given new momentum by the emergence of the East India Company in Britain. (...) Negotiations between the Dutch companies took a long time because of conflicting demands. Firstly, the Estates General wanted the merger to secure a strong Dutch presence in Asia. The hot rivalry between the voorcompagnieën undermined the country's fragile political unity and economic prosperity, and seriously limited the prospects of competing successfully against other Asian traders from Europe. By attacking the Luso-Hispanic overseas empire, a large, united company would also help in the ongoing war against the Spanish Habsburgs. Initially Van Oldenbarnevelt thought of no more than two or three manned strongholds (Van Deventer 1862, 301), but the Estates General wanted an offensive (Van Brakel 1908, 20–21)."
- Richard Sylla (2015) notes: "In modern history, several nations had what some of us call financial revolutions. These can be thought of as creating in a short period of time all the key components of a modern financial system. The first was the Dutch Republic four centuries ago."
- In Karl Marx's own words, "Its [17th-century Dutch Republic's] fisheries, marine, manufactures, surpassed those of any other country. The total capital of the Republic was probably more important than that of all the rest of Europe put together." (Das Kapital)
As Witold Rybczynski (1987) notes, the Dutch Republic or the United Provinces of the Netherlands, in its Golden Age of the 17th-century, "had few natural resources – no mines, no forests – and what little land there was needed constant protection from the sea. But this "low" country surprisingly quickly established itself as a major power. In a short time it became the most advanced shipbuilding nation in the world and developed large naval, fishing, and merchant fleets. (...) The Netherlands introduced many financial innovations that made it a major economic force – and Amsterdam became the world center for international finance. Its manufacturing towns grew so quickly that by the middle of the century the Netherlands had supplanted France as the leading industrial nation of the world."
- It was the invention of the Hollander beater (in the 17th-century) that made the Dutch Republic a major player in global pulp and paper industry.
- As Immanuel Wallerstein (1980) remarked, the Dutch shipbuilding industry was "of modern dimensions, inclining strongly toward standardised, repetitive methods. It was highly mechanized and used many labor-saving devices – wind-powered sawmills, powered feeders for saw, block and tackles, great cranes to move heavy timbers – all of which increased productivity."
- In Balkenende's own words: "Let us be optimistic! Let us say, 'It is possible again in The Netherlands!' That VOC mentality: looking across borders with dynamism!" [translated from the original text in Dutch].
- For the Dutch role in the history of capitalism (modern capitalism in particular), see: History of capitalism#Origins of capitalism
- On Chinese role in the history of pre-1600s Taiwan, Laurence G. Thompson (1964) noted, "The most striking fact about the historical knowledge of Formosa is the lack of it in Chinese records. It is truly astonishing that this very large island, so close to the mainland that on exceptionally clear days it may be made out from certain places on the Fukien coast with the unaided eye, should have remained virtually beyond the ken of Chinese writers down until late Ming times (seventeenth century)."
- The Dutch Republic or officially the Republic of the Seven United Provinces of the Netherlands (Republiek der Zeven Verenigde Nederlanden or Republiek der Verenigde Nederlanden in Dutch). Weststeijn, Arthur: "The VOC as Company-State: Debating Seventeenth Century Dutch Colonial Expansion", in Itinerario. International Journal on the History of European Expansion and Global Interaction, 38, 2014, pp. 13–34
- See also Jan Jansz. Weltevree.
- Including some notable figures of the Netherlandish school of cartography in its golden age (c. 1570s–1670s) like Petrus Plancius, Willem Blaeu, Johannes Blaeu, and Hessel Gerritsz – the official cartographers to the VOC.
- In Swedish historian Jan Glete's words, "From the late sixteenth to the early eighteenth century (...) Dutch maritime activities are normally described as superior to those of other nations and proofs of the Dutch society’s ability to combine technology, entrepreneurship and low transaction costs. The Dutch was in this period the naval enemy or ally of Spain, Portugal, England, France, Denmark-Norway and Sweden. In the naval histories of these countries, the Dutch navy is treated with respect, admiration or envy. In 1639, it won one of the most decisive victories ever achieved in a major fleet contest against Spain-Portugal in the Channel, and in 1658–59 it saved Denmark from possible extinction as an independent state by Sweden. In 1667, it attacked the English fleet in its bases, in 1672–73 it waged a very successful defensive campaign against the combined fleets of France and England [the two battles of Schooneveld and Texel], and in 1688 it achieved an invasion of England in an excellently administrated surprise mobilisation of a major fleet. In a European perspective, the Dutch navy is a strong candidate for the position as the most successful naval organisation of the seventeenth century."
- Zaandam (Saardam) was a historical center of the Dutch Republic's well-known shipbuilding industry. The shipbuilding district of Zaandam, in Holland, was one of the world's earliest known heavily industrialized areas.
- née Maria van Aelst, wife of Anthony van Diemen (Anthoonij van Diemen in Dutch), the Governor-General of the Dutch East Indies in Batavia.
- The town named after the then governor of Dutch Cape Colony, Cornelis Jacob van de Graaff, and his wife, whose maiden name was "Reinet".
- i.e., first settled or otherwise came into existence.
- named after Maurice of Nassau, Prince of Orange, the Stadtholder of all the provinces of the Dutch Republic (except for Friesland) from 1585 until his death in 1625.
- Ota, Atsushi (18 September 2013). "The Dutch East India Company and the Rise of Intra-Asian Commerce". Nippon.com (Nippon Communications Foundation). Retrieved 22 February 2018.
- Grenville, Stephen (3 November 2017). "The first global supply chain". Lowy Institute. Retrieved 18 May 2018.
- Shih, Chih-Ming; Yen, Szu-Yin (2009). The Transformation of the Sugar Industry and Land Use Policy in Taiwan, in Journal of Asian Architecture and Building Engineering [8:1], pp. 41–48
- Tseng, Hua-pi (2016). Sugar Cane and the Environment under Dutch Rule in Seventeenth Century Taiwan, in Environmental History in the Making, pp. 189–200
- Estreicher, Stefan K. (2014), 'A Brief History of Wine in South Africa,'. European Review 22(3): pp. 504–537. doi:10.1017/S1062798714000301
- Fourie, Johan; von Fintel, Dieter (2014), 'Settler Skills and Colonial Development: The Huguenot Wine-Makers in Eighteenth-Century Dutch South Africa,'. The Economic History Review 67(4): 932–963. doi:10.1111/1468-0289.12033
- Williams, Gavin (2016), 'Slaves, Workers, and Wine: The 'Dop System' in the History of the Cape Wine Industry, 1658–1894,'. Journal of Southern African Studies 42(5): 893–909
- "The Dutch East India Company (VOC)". Canon van Nederland. Archived from the original on 1 December 2010. Retrieved 19 March 2011.
- Gelderblom, Oscar; de Jong, Abe; Jonker, Joost (2011), 'An Admiralty for Asia: Business Organization and the Evolution of Corporate Governance in the Dutch Republic, 1590–1640,'; in J.G. Koppell (ed.), Origins of Shareholder Advocacy. (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2011), pp. 29–70. Gelderblom, Jonker & de Jong (2010): "The hot rivalry between the voorcompagnieën undermined the country's fragile political unity and economic prosperity, and seriously limited the prospects of competing successfully against other Asian traders from Europe. ... According to Willem Usselincx, a large merchant well versed in the intercontinental trade, the VOC charter was drafted by bewindhebbers bent on defending their own interests and the States-General had allowed that to pass so as to achieve the desired merger (Van Rees 1868, 410). An agreement was finally reached on March 20th, 1602, after which the Estates General issued a charter granting a monopoly on the Asian trade for 21 years (Gaastra 2009, 21–23)."
- Unoki, Ko (2012), 'A Seafaring Empire,'; in Mergers, Acquisitions and Global Empires: Tolerance, Diversity and the Success of M&A, by Ko Unoki. (New York: Routledge, 2013), pp. 39–64
- Richards, John F. (1995). The Mughal Empire. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 978-0-521-56603-2.
- Junie T. Tong (2016). Finance and Society in 21st Century China: Chinese Culture Versus Western Markets. CRC Press. p. 151. ISBN 978-1-317-13522-7.
- John L. Esposito, ed. (2004). The Islamic World: Past and Present. Volume 1: Abba - Hist. Oxford University Press. p. 174. ISBN 978-0-19-516520-3.
- Nanda, J. N (2005). Bengal: the unique state. Concept Publishing Company. p. 10. 2005. ISBN 978-81-8069-149-2.
Bengal [...] was rich in the production and export of grain, salt, fruit, liquors and wines, precious metals and ornaments besides the output of its handlooms in silk and cotton. Europe referred to Bengal as the richest country to trade with.
- Om Prakash, "Empire, Mughal", History of World Trade Since 1450, edited by John J. McCusker, vol. 1, Macmillan Reference USA, 2006, pp. 237–240, World History in Context. Retrieved 3 August 2017
- Indrajit Ray (2011). Bengal Industries and the British Industrial Revolution (1757-1857). Routledge. pp. 57, 90, 174. ISBN 978-1-136-82552-1.
- Gaastra, Femme (1986), 'The Dutch East India Company and its Intra-Asiatic Trade in Precious Metals,'; in The Emergence of a World Economy, 1500–1914, Part I (Papers of the XI International Congress of Economic History), edited by Wolfram Fischer, Marvin McInnis, and Jürgen Schneider (Stuttgart: F. Steiner Verlag Wiesbaden GmbH, 1986)
- Van Dyke, Paul A. (1997), 'How and Why the Dutch East India Company Became Competitive in Intra-Asian Trade in East Asia in the 1630s,'. Itinerario 21(3): 41–56. doi:10.1017/S0165115300015229
- Shimada, Ryuto (2006), 'The Golden Age of Japanese Copper: the Intra-Asian Copper Trade of the Dutch East India Company,'; in A.J.H. Latham & Heita Kawakatsu (eds.), Intra-Asian Trade and the World Market. (Abingdon: Routledge, 2006), chapter 2
- Shimada, Ryuto: The Intra-Asian Trade in Japanese Copper by the Dutch East India Company During the Eighteenth Century (TANAP Monographs on the History of Asian-European Interaction). (BRILL, 2005, ISBN 978-9004150928)
- Nadri, Ghulam A. (2008), 'The Dutch Intra-Asian Trade in Sugar in the Eighteenth Century,'. International Journal of Maritime History 20(1): 63–96
- Stringham, Edward Peter: Private Governance: Creating Order in Economic and Social Life. (Oxford University Press, 2015, ISBN 9780199365166), p.42
- Chambers, Clem (14 July 2006). "Who needs stock exchanges?". MondoVisione.com. Retrieved 20 December 2014.
- Kyriazis, Nicholas C.; Metaxas, Theodore (2011), 'Path Dependence and Change and the Emergence of the First Joint-Stock Companies,'. Business History 53(3): 363–374. doi:10.1080/00076791.2011.565513
- Petram, Lodewijk (2014); in Harold James, et al. (ed.), Financial Innovation, Regulation and Crises in History. (Routledge, 2014)
- Petram, Lodewijk (Columbia University Press, 2014)
- Stringham, Edward P. (2015); in Edward P. Stringham, Private Governance: Creating Order in Economic and Social Life. (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2015), pp. 39–60
- Stringham, Edward Peter; Curott, Nicholas A. (2015), 'On the Origins of Stock Markets,'. (Oxford University Press, 2015, ISBN 978-0199811762), pp. 324–344
- Macaulay, Catherine R. (2015), 'Capitalism's renaissance? The potential of repositioning the financial 'meta-economy,'. Futures 68: 5–18. doi:10.1016/j.futures.2014.10.016. As Catherine Macaulay (2015) notes, "(...) Meanwhile in England, the EIC repeatedly issued new bonds for the term of single voyages until 1657 and each of the six fleets sailing between 1610 and 1612 provided a profit between 50 and 200% (Dari-Mattiacci et al., 2013, p. 18). (...) The EIC's bond format, used successfully for over 50 years, has been criticised for preventing capital accumulation as bonds were liquidated quickly after each voyage and a new company effectively established for the next expedition. (...) The evolution of company bonds, adapting arrangements to suit new goals, was cut short when the EIC adopted the VOC share model in 1657."
- Steensgaard, Niels (1982), 'The Dutch East India Company as an Institutional Innovation,'; in Maurice Aymard (ed.), Dutch Capitalism and World Capitalism / Capitalisme hollandais et capitalisme mondial [Studies in Modern Capitalism / Etudes sur le capitalisme moderne], pp. 235–257
- Goetzmann, William N.; Rouwenhorst, K. Geert (Oxford University Press, 2005)
- Von Nordenflycht, Andrew (2011), 'The Great Expropriation: Interpreting the Innovation of "Permanent Capital" at the Dutch East India Company,'; in Origins of Shareholder Advocacy, edited by Jonathan G.S. Koppell. (Palgrave Macmillan, 2011), pp. 89–98
- Shah, Anup (5 December 2002). "The Rise of Corporations". GlobalIssues.org. Retrieved 28 August 2018.
Anup Shah (2002): "Today we know that corporations, for good or bad, are major influences on our lives. For example, of the 100 largest economies in the world, 51 are corporations while only 49 are countries, based on a comparison of corporate sales and country GDPs. In this era of globalization, marginalized people are becoming especially angry at the motives of multinational corporations, and corporate-led globalization is being met with increasing protest and resistance. [...]"
- Brook, Timothy: Vermeer's Hat: The Seventeenth Century and the Dawn of the Global World. (London: Profile Books, 2008) ISBN 1-84668-120-0
- Shorto, Russell (2013). Amsterdam: A History of the World's Most Liberal City.
- Taylor, Bryan. "The First and the Greatest: The Rise and Fall of the Vereenigde Oost-Indische Compagnie". GlobalFinancialData.com. Archived from the original on 24 May 2018. Retrieved 11 January 2017.
- Jonker, Joost; Gelderblom, Oscar; de Jong, Abe (2013)
- Unoki, Ko: Mergers, Acquisitions and Global Empires: Tolerance, Diversity and the Success of M&A. (New York: Routledge, 2013)
- Upbin, Bruce (22 October 2011). "The 147 Companies That Control Everything". Forbes. Retrieved 8 August 2017.
- Harlan, Chico (9 December 2012). "In S. Korea, the Republic of Samsung". The Washington Post. Retrieved 19 September 2018.
- Wooldridge, Adrian (17 September 2016). "Companies: the Rise of the Superstars". The Economist (www.economist.com). Retrieved 8 August 2017.
- LaFrance, Adrienne (11 February 2015). "Apple Is Basically a Small Country Now". The Atlantic. Retrieved 8 August 2017.
- Ullah, Zahra (17 February 2017). "How Samsung dominates South Korea's economy". CNN. Retrieved 8 August 2017.
- Sayle, Murray (5 April 2001). "Japan goes Dutch". London Review of Books vol. 23 no. 7. Retrieved 15 June 2018.
- Ferguson, Niall (2002). Empire: The Rise and Demise of the British World Order and the Lessons for Global Power, p. 15. Niall Ferguson: "Moreover, their company [the VOC] was a permanent joint-stock company, unlike the English company [the English East India Company], which did not become permanent until 1650."
- Clarke, Thomas; Branson, Douglas (eds.): The SAGE Handbook of Corporate Governance. (London: SAGE Publications, 2012), p. 431. "The EIC first issued permanent shares in 1657 (Harris, 2005: 45)."
- Shinkai, Tetsuya; Ohkawa, Takao; Okamura, Makoto; Harimaya, Kozo (2012), 'Why did the Dutch East India Co. outperform the British East India Co.? A theoretical explanation based on the objective of the firm and limited liability'. (Discussion Paper Series No. 96, School of Economics, Kwansei Gakuin University). Tetsuya Shinkai et al. (2012): "The Dutch company sent a governor-general with full authority over all of the company's officers to Indonesia. The British East India Company was even more decentralized, however, and acted less as a trading company than as a guild. It allowed each of its members to trade on his account, owning only the ships in common with other members. Bernstein (2008) also describes the behavior of the employees of the British East India Company, "the employee of the East India Company treated its ships as their own, transporting large amounts of trade goods for their accounts to and from Asia.""
- Vasu, Rajkamal (2017), 'The Transition to Locked-In Capital in the First Corporations: Venture Capital Financing in Early Modern Europe Archived 5 April 2018 at the Wayback Machine'. (Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University)
- Raben, Remco (2013), 'A New Dutch Imperial History? Perambulations in a Prospective Field,'. BMGN: Low Countries Historical Review 128(1): 5–30
- Hanft, Adam (23 May 2010). "Google Is the New "CorporNation" – Half Company, Half Virtual Government". HuffPost. Retrieved 23 May 2018.
- Weststeijn, Arthur (2014), 'The VOC as a Company-State: Debating Seventeenth-Century Dutch Colonial Expansion,'. Itinerario 38(1): 13–34. doi:10.1017/S0165115314000035
- Vickers (2005), p. 10
- In his Das Kapital, Karl Marx describes the Dutch Republic, in its Golden Age, as "the model capitalist nation of the seventeenth century", which was at the dawn of modern capitalism.
- Taylor, Peter J. (2002). Dutch Hegemony and Contemporary Globalization (Paper prepared for Political Economy of World-Systems Conference, Riverside, California).
- Gordon, John Steele (1999). The Great Game: The Emergence of Wall Street as a World Power: 1653–2000. (Scribner, ISBN 978-0684832876).
- "Slave Ship Mutiny: Program Transcript". Secrets of the Dead. PBS. 11 November 2010. Retrieved 12 November 2010.
- Ames, Glenn J. (2008). The Globe Encompassed: The Age of European Discovery, 1500–1700. pp. 102–103.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 7 February 2015. Retrieved 5 July 2015.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link) VOC at the National Library of the Netherlands (in Dutch)
- Due to internal structural changes, the effects of the fourth Anglo Dutch War in 1780 and the invasion of the French in 1795 all contributed to created a perfect storm devastating the company's revenue and lending capability. In the earlier hours of 14 June 1795 an English fleet hijacked nine Dutch East India Company ships off the coast of Saint Helena. As a result of this hijacking the VOC lost many ships and the accompanying cargo. The company could not afford to recover from this loss. The 'Committee for Affairs Relating to East India Trade and Possessions', instituted by the new Batavian Republic revolutionary government, resulting in the VOC being nationalised on 1 January 1800. The VOC charter, the legal foundation of the enterprise was revoked. Although the state of war in Europe permitted no drastic changes in course as far as shipping and trade to Asia were concerned it spelled the end of the company Balk, L., Van Dijk, F., Kortlang, D., Gaastra, F. Niemeijer, H., Koenders, P. (2007) The Archives of the Dutch East India Company (VOC) and the Local Institutions in Batavia (Jakarta), p. 14
- Lucas, Gavin (2006), 'The Archaeology of Dutch Capitalism and the Colonial Trade,'. In Gavin Lucas, An Archaeology of Colonial Identity: Power and Material Culture in the Dwars Valley, South Africa. (New York: Springer, 2006)
- Zuber, Charles. "VOC: The logo that lasted". Designonline.org.au. Retrieved 22 January 2017.
- Tim Treadgold (13 March 2006). "Cross-Breeding". Forbes. Archived from the original on 4 June 2013. Retrieved 2 April 2013.
- The Dutch East India Company Archived 6 September 2015 at the Wayback Machine, European Heritage Project
- Crump, Thomas (1 March 2006). "The Dutch East Indies Company – The First 100 Years [Transcript]". Gresham College (gresham.ac.uk). Retrieved 21 August 2017.
- de Vries, Jan; van der Woude, Ad (1997). The First Modern Economy: Success, Failure, and Perseverance of the Dutch Economy, 1500-1815. Cambridge University Press. p. 383. ISBN 0-521-57061-1.
- Ricklefs, M. C. (1991). A History of Modern Indonesia Since c. 1300. London: MacMillan. p. 27. ISBN 0-333-57689-6.
- Ricklefs, M.C. (1991). A History of Modern Indonesia Since c.1300, 2nd Edition. London: MacMillan. pp. 25–28. ISBN 0-333-57689-6.
- (in Portuguese) Matos, Artur Teodoro de (1974), Timor Portugues, 1515–1769, Lisboa: Instituto Histórico Infante Dom Henrique.
- (in Dutch) Roever, Arend de (2002), De jacht op sandelhout: De VOC en de tweedeling van Timor in de zeventiende eeuw, Zutphen: Walburg Pers.
- In the medium term, as new suppliers could enter the market. In the short term the supply was, of course, also inelastic.
- De Vries and Van der Woude, p. 384–385
- Reid, Anthony (1993). Southeast Asia in the Age of Commerce, 1450–1680. New Haven, Connecticut: Yale University Press. p. 290.
- Bruce, John (1810). Annals of the Honorable East-India Company. Black, Parry, and Kingsbury. p. 28.
- Boxer, C. R. (1948). Fidalgos in the Far East, 1550–1770. The Hague: Martinus Nijhoff. p. 50.
- Boyajian, James C. (2008). Portuguese Trade in Asia under the Habsburgs, 1580–1640. JHU Press. p. 151. ISBN 978-0-8018-8754-3.
- Ricklefs, M.C. (1991). A History of Modern Indonesia Since c.1300, 2nd Edition. London: MacMillan. p. 29. ISBN 0-333-57689-6.
- Om Prakash, The Dutch East India Company and the Economy of Bengal, 1630–1720 (Princeton University Press, 1985)
- William De Lange, Pars Japonica: the first Dutch expedition to reach the shores of Japan, (2006)
- Miller, George (ed.) (1996). To The Spice Islands and Beyond: Travels in Eastern Indonesia. New York: Oxford University Press. xvi. ISBN 967-65-3099-9.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
- Ricklefs, M.C. (1991). A History of Modern Indonesia Since c.1300, 2nd Edition. London: MacMillan. p. 30. ISBN 0-333-57689-6.
- The Dutch Seaborne Empire 1600–1800, p.218
- De Vries and Van der Woude, p. 386
- Ames, Glenn J. (2008). The Globe Encompassed: The Age of European Discovery, 1500–1700. p. 115.
- "Calling the shots: political interaction".
- Hertroijes, Frasie (2011). "Meeting the Dutch: cooperation and conflict between Jesuits and Dutch merchants in Asia, 1680–1795" (PDF). Paper Presented at the Conference of ENIUGH, London: 10. Retrieved 28 July 2018.[permanent dead link]
- Andrade, Tonio (2005). How Taiwan Became Chinese: Dutch, Spanish and Han Colonization in the Seventeenth Century. Columbia University Press.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 14 March 2012. Retrieved 11 March 2012.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
- The share price had appreciated significantly, so in that respect the dividend was less impressive
- De Witt, D. "The Easternization of the West: The Role of Melaka, the Malay-Indonesian archipelago and the Dutch (VOC). (International seminar by the Melaka State Government, the Malaysian Institute of Historical and Patriotism Studies (IKSEP), the Institute of Occidental Studies (IKON) at the National University of Malaysia (UKM) and the Netherlands Embassy in Malaysia. Malacca, Malaysia, 27 July 2006". Children of the VOC at. Archived from the original on 14 August 2009. Retrieved 14 February 2010.
- Blusse, Leonard. Strange Company: Chinese Settlers, Mestizo Women and the Dutch in VOC Batavia. (Dordrecht-Holland; Riverton, U.S.A., Foris Publications, 1986. xiii, 302p.) number: 959.82 B659.
- De Vries and Van der Woude, pp. 434–435
- De Vries and Van der Woude, pp. 430–433
- During the Nine Years' War, the French and Dutch companies came to blows on the Indian Subcontinent. The French sent naval expeditions from metropolitan France, which the VOC easily countered. On the other hand, the VOC conquered the important fortress of Pondichéry after a siege of only 16 days by an expedition of 3,000 men and 19 ships under Laurens Pit from Negapatnam in September 1693. The Dutch then made the defenses of the fortress impregnable, which they came to regret when the Dutch government returned it to the French by the Treaty of Ryswick in exchange for tariff concessions in Europe by the French. Chauhuri and Israel, p 424
- De Vries and Van der Woude, pp. 433–434
- Chaudhuri and Israel, pp. 428–429
- However, the VOC had been defeated many times before. On the Indian Subcontinent, the EIC had suffered a resounding defeat from the Mughal forces in its 1689 Mughal War; Chaudhury and Israel, pp. 435–436
- It was also helpful that the price war with the EIC in the early decade had caused the accumulation of enormous inventories of pepper and spices, which enabled the VOC to cut down on shipments later on, thereby freeing up capital to increase shipments of other goods; De Vries and Van der Woude, p. 436
- De Vries and Van der Woude, pp. 436–437
- De Vries and Van der Woude, pp. 437–440
- De Vries and Van der Woude, pp. 441–442
- De Vries and Van der Woude, p. 447
- De Vries and Van der Woude, p. 448
- De Vries and Van der Woude, pp. 449–455
- A particularly egregious example was that of the "Amfioen Society". This was a business of higher VOC-employees that received a monopoly of the opium trade on Java, at a time when the VOC had to pay monopoly prices to the EIC to buy the opium in Bengal; Burger, passim
- De Vries and Van der Woude, pp. 454–455
- Kumar, Ann (1997). Java and Modern Europe: Ambiguous Encounters. p. 32.
- TANAP, The end of the VOC
- Anderson, Clare; Frykma, Niklas; van Voss, Lex Heerma; Rediker, Marcus (2013). Mutiny and Maritime Radicalism in the Age of Revolution: A Global Survey, p. 113-114
- De Vries, Jan; Van der Woude, Ad (1997). The First Modern Economy: Success, Failure, and Perseverance of the Dutch Economy, 1500–1815, p. 462
- Howard, Michael C. (2011). Transnationalism and Society: An Introduction, p. 121
- De Vries and Van der Woude, p. 385
- De Vries and Van der Woude, pp. 384–385
- Ames, Glenn J. (2008). The Globe Encompassed: The Age of European Discovery, 1500–1700. p. 103.
- Hanna, Willard A. (1991). Indonesian Banda: Colonialism and its Aftermath in the Nutmeg Islands. Bandanaira: Yayasan Warisan dan Budaya Banda Naira.
- Ames, Glenn J. (2008). The Globe Encompassed: The Age of European Discovery, 1500–1700. p. 111.
- Frentrop, Paul: A History of Corporate Governance, 1602–2002. (Brussels: Deminor, 2003, ISBN 9090170677)
- Lukomnik, Jon: Thoughts on the Origins and Development of the Modern Corporate Governance Movement and Shareholder Activism (chapter 22, p. 450–460), in The Handbook of Board Governance: A Comprehensive Guide for Public, Private and Not – for – Profit Board Members, edited by Richard Leblanc (John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2016)
- Gelderblom, Oscar; De Jong, Abe; Jonker, Joost (2010). Putting Le Maire into Perspective: Business Organization and the Evolution of Corporate Governance in the Dutch Republic, 1590–1610, in J. Koppell, ed., Origins of Shareholder Advocacy. (New York: Palgrave Macmillan)
- McRitchie, James (6 October 2011). "Will UNFI Go Virtual-Only Again? Not if Shareowners Just Say No". CorpGov.net. Retrieved 28 December 2016.
- Mueller, Dennis C. (ed.), (2012). The Oxford Handbook of Capitalism, p. 333. (New York: Oxford University Press)
- Frentrop, Paul (2009). The First Known Shareholder Activist: The Colorful Life and Times of Isaac le Maire (1559–1624), in Frentrop/Jonker/Davis 2009, 11–26
- Frentrop, Paul; Jonker, Joost; Davis, S. (ed.), (2009). Shareholder Rights at 400: Commemorating Isaac Le Maire and the First Recorded Expression of Investor Advocacy (The Hague: Remix Business Communications, 2009)
- Hansmann, Henry; Pargendler, Mariana (2013). The Evolution of Shareholder Voting Rights: Separation of Ownership and Consumption. (Yale Law Journal, Vol. 123, pp. 100–165, 2014)
- Soll, Jacob (27 April 2014). "No Accounting Skills? No Moral Reckoning". The New York Times. Retrieved 10 April 2016.
- De Jongh, Matthijs (2010). Shareholder Activism at the Dutch East India Company 1622–1625, in Origins of Shareholder Advocacy (Palgrave Macmillan, 2011)
- Milton, Giles (1999). Nathaniel's Nutmeg, Or, The True and Incredible Adventures of the Spice Trader who Changed the Course of History. MacMillan. ISBN 9781250069283. Retrieved 9 October 2018.
- Rothbard, Murray: Making Economic Sense, 2nd edition. (Auburn, AL: Ludwig von Mises Institute, 2006) ISBN 9781610165907, p. 426
- Dore, Ronald: Stock Market Capitalism, Welfare Capitalism: Japan and Germany versus the Anglo-Saxons. (Oxford University Press, 2000, pp. 280, ISBN 978-0199240616)
- Preda, Alex: Framing Finance: The Boundaries of Markets and Modern Capitalism. (University of Chicago Press, 2009, pp. 328, ISBN 978-0-226-67932-7)
- "World's oldest share". The World's Oldest Share. Retrieved 8 August 2017.
- "Dutch history student finds world's oldest share". Guinness World Records Limited 2014. 10 September 2010. Retrieved 8 August 2017.
- "Student finds oldest Dutch share". Radio Netherlands Worldwide. 10 September 2010. Archived from the original on 8 August 2014. Retrieved 8 August 2017.
- Dunkley, Jamie (11 September 2010). "Dutch student finds world's oldest share certificate". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 8 August 2017.
- Huston, Jeffrey L.: The Declaration of Dependence: Dividends in the Twenty-First Century. (Archway Publishing, 2015, ISBN 9781480825048).
- Shiller, Robert: The United East India Company and Amsterdam Stock Exchange [00:01:14], in Economics 252, Financial Markets: Lecture 4 – Portfolio Diversification and Supporting Financial Institutions. (Open Yale Courses, 2011) [Transcript]
- Hagel, John; Brown, John Seely (12 March 2013). "Institutional Innovation: Creating Smarter Organizations". Deloitte Insights. Retrieved 8 August 2018.
- Huettner, Heino (20 May 2011). "What has the Dutch East India Company in common with the six million dollar man?". Capgemini (capgemini.com). Retrieved 20 May 2018.
- Roberts, Keith (15 March 2015). "Corporate Colonization of Wisconsin, Part IV – The Dutch East India Company and the Koch Wisconsin Company". MiddleWisconsin.org. Retrieved 25 May 2018.
- Partridge, Matthew (20 March 2015). "This day in history: 20 March 1602: Dutch East India Company formed". MoneyWeek (moneyweek.com). Retrieved 20 May 2018.
- Hennigan, Michael (22 January 2018). "First Modern Economy: Myths on tulips & most valuable firm in history". Finfacts.ie (Irish Finance and Business Portal). Retrieved 22 May 2018.
- Pausenberger, Ehrenfried. "How powerful are the multinational corporations?". (Intereconomics 18.3 (1983): 130–136).
- Rodionova, Zlata (13 September 2016). "World's largest corporations make more money than most countries on Earth combined". The Independent. Retrieved 8 August 2017.
- Green, Duncan (20 September 2016). "The world's top 100 economies: 31 countries; 69 corporations". World Bank. Archived from the original on 24 January 2018. Retrieved 18 January 2018.
- Myers, Joe (19 October 2016). "How do the world's biggest companies compare to the biggest economies?". World Economic Forum (www.weforum.org). Retrieved 18 January 2018.
- An annual list of the world's biggest present-day public companies, by Forbes magazine.
- Khanna, Parag (20 April 2016). "The New World Order Is Ruled By Global Corporations And Megacities—Not Countries". Fast Company. Retrieved 28 August 2018.
- Goetzmann, William N.; Rouwenhorst, K. Geert (2008). The History of Financial Innovation, in Carbon Finance, Environmental Market Solutions to Climate Change. (Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, chapter 1, pp. 18–43).
- "The Keynes Conundrum by David P. Goldman". First Things (firstthings.com). 11 October 2010. Retrieved 11 November 2017.
- Gordon, John Steele: The Great Game: The Emergence of Wall Street as a World Power, 1653–2000. (Scribner Book Company, 1999, ISBN 978-0684832876)
- Mead, Walter Russell (18 April 2009). "Walter Russell Mead on Why Lula Was Right (The Debt We Owe the Dutch: Blue-Eyed Bankers Have Given Us More Than the Current Financial Crisis)". Newsweek Magazine (newsweek.com). Retrieved 1 November 2017.
- Ball, Peter (3 April 2017). "When did globalisation really get started?". The Heritage Portal (theheritageportal.co.za). Retrieved 13 June 2018.
- Taylor, Bryan (GlobalFinancialData.com) (6 November 2013). "The Rise and Fall of the Largest Corporation in History". Business Insider. Retrieved 11 April 2014.
- Wilson, Eric Michael: The Savage Republic: De Indis of Hugo Grotius, Republicanism and Dutch Hegemony within the Early Modern World-System (c.1600–1619). (Martinus Nijhoff, 2008, ISBN 978-9004167889), p. 215–217.
- Jonker, Joost; Gelderblom, Oscar; de Jong, Abe (2013). The Formative Years of the Modern Corporation: The Dutch East India Company VOC, 1602–1623. (The Journal of Economic History / Volume 73 / Issue 04 / December 2013, pp. 1050–1076)
- Tarrant, Nicholas (29 April 2014). "The VOC: The Birth of the Modern Corporation". The Economics Student Society of Australia. Archived from the original on 14 August 2018. Retrieved 23 March 2018.
- Picard, Caroline (2 August 2016). "In The Late Afternoon of Modernism: An Interview with Graham Harman". Badatsports.com. Retrieved 23 March 2018.
- Mahaney, Mark (8 January 2017). "How Amazon Can Become the World's First Trillion-Dollar Business". Supply Chain 24/7 (supplychain247.com). Retrieved 11 January 2017.
- Desjardins, Jeff (VisualCapitalist.com) (12 December 2017). "How today's tech giants compare to the massive companies of empires past". Business Insider. Retrieved 17 December 2017.
- Murphy, Richard McGill (1 July 2014). "Is Asia the next financial center of the world?". CNBC. Retrieved 11 March 2017.
- Brooks, John: The Fluctuation: The Little Crash in '62, in Business Adventures: Twelve Classic Tales from the World of Wall Street. (New York: Weybright & Talley, 1968)
- Shorto, Russell: Amsterdam: A History of the World's Most Liberal City. (Doubleday, 2013), pp. 368
- Manber, Jeffrey (9 October 2016). "Exploration Created the World's First Stock Market". JeffreyManber.com. Retrieved 1 August 2017.
- Wilson, Eric Michael: The Savage Republic: De Indis of Hugo Grotius, Republicanism and Dutch Hegemony within the Early Modern World-System (c.1600–1619). (Martinus Nijhoff, 2008, ISBN 978-9004167889), p. 215–217
- Kaiser, Kevin; Young, S. David: The Blue Line Imperative: What Managing for Value Really Means. (San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass, 2013) ISBN 978-1118510889, p. 26
- Molavi, Afshin (12 March 2017). "The Netherlands was once a liberal force for globalization. Has the country lost its way?". The Washington Post (washingtonpost.com). Retrieved 7 July 2017.
- Earl, Steve (29 October 2012). "Dutch courage: modern PR lessons from the world's first corporation". Zeno Group (zenogroup.com). Archived from the original on 7 August 2017. Retrieved 7 July 2017.
- Neal, Larry: The Rise of Financial Capitalism: International Capital Markets in the Age of Reason (Studies in Monetary and Financial History). (Cambridge University Press, 1993, ISBN 9780521457385)
- Goetzmann, William N.; Rouwenhorst, K. Geert: The Origins of Value: The Financial Innovations that Created Modern Capital Markets. (Oxford University Press, 2005, ISBN 978-0195175714))
- Former US President Theodore Roosevelt once said "I believe in corporations. They are indispensable instruments of our modern civilization…".
In "The Age of Uncertainty" (1977), John Kenneth Galbraith, writes, "The institution that most changes our lives we least understand or, more correctly, seek most elaborately to misunderstand. That is the modern corporation. Week by week, month by month, year by year, it exercises a greater influence on our livelihood and the way we live than unions, universities, politicians, the government."
- Anderson, Sarah; Cavanagh, John (Corpwatch.org, 2000). "Top 200: The Rise of Global Corporate Power". Global Policy Forum (www.globalpolicy.org). Retrieved 21 January 2018.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
- Greer, Jed; Singh, Kavaljit. "A Brief History of Transnational Corporations". Global Policy Forum (www.globalpolicy.org). Retrieved 21 January 2018.
- Rodionova, Zlata (13 September 2016). "World's largest corporations make more money than most countries on Earth combined". The Independent. Retrieved 8 August 2017.
- Innes-Miller, Harris (September 2016). "Moon or Mars – how logical is NASA's next step?". Room, The Space Journal (room.eu.com). Retrieved 7 July 2017.
- Phelan, Ben (7 January 2013). "Dutch East India Company: The World's First Multinational". PBS.org (PBS Online). Retrieved 11 April 2014.
- Smith, B. Mark (2003). A History of the Global Stock Market: From Ancient Rome to Silicon Valley. (University of Chicago Press, ISBN 9780226764047), p. 17.
- Hawley, James P.; Williams, Andrew T. (2000). The Rise of Fiduciary Capitalism: How Institutional Investors Can Make Corporate America More Democratic. (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2000, ISBN 9780812235630), p. 44
- Tarrant, Nicholas (29 April 2014). "The VOC: The Birth of the Modern Corporation". The Economics Student Society of Australia. Archived from the original on 14 August 2018. Retrieved 29 January 2017.
- Clarke, Thomas; Branson, Douglas (2012). The SAGE Handbook of Corporate Governance (Sage Handbooks). (SAGE Publications Ltd., ISBN 9781412929806, p. 431).
- Gepken-Jager, Ella; van Solinge, Gerard; Timmermann, Levinus (eds.): VOC 1602–2002: 400 Years of Company Law (Series Law of Business and Finance, Vol. 6). (Deventer: Kluwer Legal Publishers, 2005, ISBN 9013019153)
- Funnell, Warwick; Robertson, Jeffrey: Accounting by the First Public Company: The Pursuit of Supremacy. (Routledge, 2013, ISBN 0415716179)
- Brooks, John (1968), 'The Fluctuation: The Little Crash in '62,'; in Business Adventures: Twelve Classic Tales from the World of Wall Street by John Brooks. (New York: Weybright & Talley, 1968)
- Stringham, Edward Peter; Curott, Nicholas A. (2015), 'On the Origins of Stock Markets,' [Chapter 14, Part IV: Institutions and Organizations]; in The Oxford Handbook of Austrian Economics, edited by Peter J. Boettke and Christopher J. Coyne. (Oxford University Press, 2015, ISBN 978-0199811762), pp. 324–344
- Wu, Wei Neng (26 February 2014). "Hub Cities – London: Why did London lose its preeminent port hub status, and how has it continued to retain its dominance in marine logistics, insurance, financing and law? (Civil Service College of Singapore)". Civil Service College Singapore (cscollege.gov.sg). Retrieved 26 February 2017.
- Sobel, Andrew C.: Birth of Hegemony: Crisis, Financial Revolution, and Emerging Global Networks. (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2012, ISBN 978-0226767604)
- Corrigan, Karina H.; van Campen, Jan; Diercks, Femke; Blyberg, Janet C. (eds.): Asia in Amsterdam: The Culture of Luxury in the Golden Age. (Yale University Press, 2015, ISBN 9780300212877)
- Murray, James M.: Bruges: Cradle of Capitalism, 1280–1390. (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2005)
- Van der Wee, Herman: The Growth of the Antwerp Market and the European Economy [3 vols.]. (The Hague: M. Nijhoff, 1963)
- Voet, Leon: Antwerp, the Golden Age: The Rise and Glory of the Metropolis in the Sixteenth Century. (Antwerp: Mercatorfonds, 1973)
- Puttevils, Jeroen: Merchants and Trading in the Sixteenth Century: The Golden Age of Antwerp. (London: Pickering & Chatto, 2015)
- Van Oers, R.: Dutch Town Planning Overseas during VOC and WIC Rule, 1600–1800. (Zutphen: Walburg Pers, 2000)
- Parthesius, Robert: Dutch Ships in Tropical Waters: The Development of the Dutch East India Company (VOC) Shipping Network in Asia, 1595–1660. (Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press, 2010)
- Kennedy, Paul (1989). The Rise and Fall of the Great Powers
- Bindemann, Kirsten (1999). The Future of European Financial Centres
- Cassis, Youssef (2010). Capitals of Capital: The Rise and Fall of International Financial Centres 1780–2009. Translated by Jacqueline Collier. (Cambridge University Press, 2010), p. 9
- Mead, Walter Russell (18 April 2009). "Walter Russell Mead on Why Lula Was Right (The Debt We Owe the Dutch: Blue-Eyed Bankers Have Given Us More Than the Current Financial Crisis)". Newsweek. Retrieved 11 June 2014.
- Taylor, Bryan (GlobalFinancialData.com) (8 December 2013). "How 3 Countries Lost Their Position As The World's Dominant Financial Power Over The Last 800 Years". Business Insider. Retrieved 14 May 2014.
- "Amsterdam: Where It All Began". IFA.com (Index Fund Advisors, Inc.). 12 August 2012. Retrieved 21 January 2017.
- Petram, Lodewijk: The World's First Stock Exchange: How the Amsterdam Market for Dutch East India Company Shares Became a Modern Securities Market, 1602–1700. Translated from the Dutch by Lynne Richards. (Columbia University Press, 2014)
- Boettke, Peter J.; Coyne, Christopher J. (eds.): The Oxford Handbook of Austrian Economics. (Oxford University Press, 2015, ISBN 978-0199811762), pp. 324–344
- Neal, Larry (2005), 'Venture Shares of the Dutch East India Company,'; in The Origins of Value: The Financial Innovations that Created Modern Capital Markets, edited by Goetzmann & Rouwenhorst. (Oxford University Press, 2005), pp. 165–175
- Macaulay, Catherine R. (2015). 'Capitalism's renaissance? The potential of repositioning the financial 'meta-economy,'. Futures 68: 5–18
- Stringham, Edward (2003). "The Extralegal Development of Securities Trading in Seventeenth Century Amsterdam". Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance. 43 (2): 321–344. doi:10.1016/s1062-9769(02)00153-9. S2CID 153987773. SSRN 1676251.
- De la Vega, Joseph, Confusion de Confusiones (1688), Portions Descriptive of the Amsterdam Stock Exchange, introduction by Hermann Kellenbenz, Baker Library, Harvard Graduate School of Business Administration (1957)
- Zahedieh, Nuala (2010). The Capital and the Colonies: London and the Atlantic Economy 1660–1700 (Cambridge University Press), p. 152
- Liedtke, Walter A.; Plomp, Michiel C.; Rüger, Axel (eds.): Vermeer and the Delft School. (New York: Metropolitan Museum of Art; New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2001), pp. 203–204
- Oostindie, Gert: Postcolonial Netherlands Sixty-Five Years of Forgetting, Commemorating, Silencing. (Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press, 2010, ISBN 9789089643537), p. 252
- Jonsson, Stefan; Willén, Julia (eds.): Austere Histories in European Societies: Social Exclusion and the Contest of Colonial Memories. (London: Routledge, 2016), p. 67
- Queen Máxima of the Netherlands (27 March 2014). "Speech by Queen Máxima at fourth annual Morningstar Investment Conference in Amsterdam". Het Koninklijk Huis. Retrieved 8 September 2018.
- McCammon, James (4 April 2014). "The Dutch East India Company and Dutch State Formation in the Seventeenth Century". jamesmccammon.com. Retrieved 24 April 2018.
- Borschberg, Peter (2002), 'The Seizure of the Santo António at Pattani: VOC Freebooting, the Estado da Índia, Peninsular Politics, 1602–1609,'. Journal of the Siam Society 90: pp. 59–72
- Emmer, Peter C. (2003), 'The First Global War: The Dutch versus Iberia in Asia, Africa and the New World, 1590–1609,'. e-Journal of Portuguese History 1(1): pp. 1–14
- Borschberg, Peter (2009), 'The Johor-VOC Alliance and the Twelve Years' Truce: Factionalism, Intrigue and International Diplomacy, c. 1606–1613,'. International Law and Justice Working Papers, New York University School of Law, Working Paper 2009/8
- Borschberg, Peter (2004), 'Luso-Johor-Dutch Relations in the Straits of Malacca and Singapore, c. 1600–1623,'. Itinerario 28(2): pp. 15–44. doi:10.1017/S0165115300019471
- De Jong, Abe; Gelderblom, Oscar; Jonker, Joost (2010), 'An Admiralty for Asia: Isaac le Maire and Conflicting Conceptions About the Corporate Governance of the VOC'. (Working Paper Erasmus Research Institute of Management, 2010)
- Borschberg, Peter (1999), 'Hugo Grotius, East India Trade and the King of Johor,'. Journal of Southeast Asian Studies 30(2): pp. 225–248. doi:10.1017/S002246340001300X
- Borschberg, Peter (2002), 'The Seizure of the Sta. Catarina Revisited: The Portuguese Empire in Asia, VOC Politics and the Origins of the Dutch-Johor Alliance (1602–c.1616),'. Journal of Southeast Asian Studies 33(1): pp. 31–62. doi:10.1017/S0022463402000024
- Sylla, Richard (2015). "Financial Development, Corporations, and Inequality". (BHC-EBHA Meeting)
- Tracy, James D.: A Financial Revolution in the Habsburg Netherlands: Renten and Renteniers in the County of Holland, 1515–1565. (University of California Press, 1985, 300 pp)
- Gelderblom, Oscar; Jonker, Joost: Completing a Financial Revolution: The Finance of the Dutch East India Trade and the Rise of the Amsterdam Capital Market, 1595–1612. (The Journal of Economic History, 2004, vol. 64, issue 03, p. 641–72)
- Swart, K.W (24 May 2012). "The Miracle of the Dutch Republic as seen in the seventeenth century. An inaugural lecture delivered at University College London (6 November 1967)". Retrieved 24 February 2017.
- Muhlberger, Steve. "Nipissing University History 2155 – Early Modern Europe: The Dutch Miracle". Nipissing University. Retrieved 22 August 2016.
- Raico, Ralph (1994). The Theory of Economic Development and the European Miracle, in "The Collapse of Development Planning" (New York University Press, 1994), pp. 47–48, edited by Peter J. Boettke
- Soll, Jacob (2014). The Reckoning: Financial Accountability and the Making and Breaking of Nations. (Penguin, 2015, ISBN 9780718193621). As Jacob Soll (2014) notes, "of which 20 percent of its [the Dutch Republic's] landmass was below sea level and another 40 percent was exposed to tides and flooding."
- Gieseking, Jen Jack; Mangold, William; et al.: The People, Place, and Space Reader. (Routledge, 2014, ISBN 9780415664974), p. 151
- Davids, Karel; Lucassen, Jan (1995). A Miracle Mirrored: The Dutch Republic in European Perspective, p. 370
- Dingsdale, Alan (2002). Mapping Modernities, p. 8
- Babones, Salvatore; Chase-Dunn, Christopher (2012). Routledge Handbook of World-Systems Analysis (Routledge International Handbooks), p. 181-182
- Daly, Jonathan (2014). The Rise of Western Power: A Comparative History of Western Civilization, p. 228-229
- Freist, Dagmar (17 October 2012). "The Dutch Century (Das niederländische Jahrhundert)". IEG-EGO.eu (European History Online). Retrieved 27 January 2017.
- Kaletsky, Anatole (2010). Capitalism 4.0: The Birth of a New Economy in the Aftermath of Crisis, p. 109-110.
- The business activities around the world by Dutch transnational companies (such as the Noordsche Compagnie, Dutch East India Company, and Dutch West India Company) and Dutch businessmen (like Louis de Geer who is called 'the father of Swedish industry') are referred to as the earliest cases of outward foreign direct investment (FDI) in history of modern world economy.
- Lindblad, J. Thomas (1995), 'Louis de Geer (1587–1652): Dutch Entrepreneur and the Father of Swedish Industry,'; in Clé Lesger & Leo Noordegraaf (eds.), Entrepreneurs and Entrepreneurship in Early Modern Times: Merchants and Industrialists within the Orbit of the Dutch Staple Markets. (The Hague: Stichting Hollandse Historische Reeks, 1995), pp. 77–85
- Müller, Leos (2005), 'The Dutch Entrepreneurial Networks and Sweden in the Age of Greatness,'; in Hanno Brand (ed.), Trade, Diplomacy and Cultural Exchange: Continuity and Change in the North Sea Area and the Baltic, c. 1350–1750. (Hilversum: Verloren, 2005), pp. 58–74
- Wilson, Charles.H. (1973). Transport as a Factor in the History of European Economic Development. (Journal of European Economic History, 2 (2): 320–37.
- Wallerstein, Immanuel (2011). The Modern World-System II: Mercantilism and the Consolidation of the European World-Economy, 1600–1750. (Academic Press, 1980), p. 43-44
- Lunsford, Virginia W.: Piracy and Privateering in the Golden Age Netherlands. (Palgrave Macmillan, 2005), p. 69
- Molyneux, John (14 February 2004). "Rembrandt and revolution: Revolt that shaped a new kind of art". SocialistWorker.co.uk. Retrieved 14 February 2017.
- Kaletsky, Anatole (2010). Capitalism 4.0: The Birth of a New Economy in the Aftermath of Crisis, p. 109
- Soll, Jacob: The Reckoning: Financial Accountability and the Making and Breaking of Nations. (New York: Basic Books, 2014). Jacob Soll (2014): "With the complexity of the stock exchange, [17th-century] Dutch merchants' knowledge of finance became more sophisticated than that of their Italian predecessors or German neighbors."
- Steckel, Richard H.; Floud, Roderick (1997). Health and Welfare during Industrialization, p. 332
- Oostindie, Gert (Amsterdam University Press, 2010, ISBN 9789089643537)
- Boerhout, Laura; Jung, Mariska; Marcinkowski, Paul (2012). "Zwarte Piet, a Bitter Treat? Racial Issues in The Netherlands and the U.S." HumanityInAction.org. Archived from the original on 7 February 2017. Retrieved 2 February 2017.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
- Kooiman, Mirjam (23 September 2015). "The Dutch VOC mentality. Cultural Policy as a Business Model". L'internationale (internationaleonline.org). Retrieved 23 January 2017.
- Funnell, Warwick; Robertson, Jeffrey: Accounting by the First Public Company: The Pursuit of Supremacy. (New York: Routledge, 2014, ISBN 0415716179)
- Brenner, Reuven (1994). Labyrinths of Prosperity: Economic Follies, Democratic Remedies. (University of Michigan Press, 1994), p. 57-60
- Moore, Jason W. (2010b). "'Amsterdam is Standing on Norway' Part II: The Global North Atlantic in the Ecological Revolution of the Long Seventeenth Century," Journal of Agrarian Change, 10, 2, p. 188–227
- Chen, Piera; Gardner, Dinah: Lonely Planet: Taiwan [10th edition]. (Lonely Planet, 2017, ISBN 978-1786574398).
- Thompson, Laurence G. (1964), 'The Earliest Chinese Eyewitness Accounts of the Formosan Aborigines,'. Monumenta Serica 23(1): 163–204. Laurence G. Thompson (1964) noted, "The most striking fact about the historical knowledge of Formosa is the lack of it in Chinese records. It is truly astonishing that this very large island, so close to the mainland that on exceptionally clear days it may be made out from certain places on the Fukien coast with the unaided eye, should have remained virtually beyond the ken of Chinese writers down until late Ming times (seventeenth century)."
- Kuzminski, Adrian: The Ecology of Money: Debt, Growth, and Sustainability. (Lexington Books, 2013), p. 38
- Brenner, Reuven: Labyrinths of Prosperity: Economic Follies, Democratic Remedies. (University of Michigan Press, 1994), p. 60
- Moore, Jason W (2010a). "'Amsterdam is Standing on Norway' Part I: The Alchemy of Capital, Empire, and Nature in the Diaspora of Silver, 1545–1648". Journal of Agrarian Change. 10 (1): 35–71.
- Thompson, Laurence G. (1964), 'The Earliest Chinese Eyewitness Accounts of the Formosan Aborigines,'. Monumenta Serica 23(1): 163–204
- Van Boven, M. W. "Towards A New Age of Partnership (TANAP): An Ambitious World Heritage Project (UNESCO Memory of the World – reg.form, 2002)". VOC Archives Appendix 2, p.14.
- Sarna, David E. Y. (2010). History of Greed: Financial Fraud from Tulip Mania to Bernie Madoff
- "Most valuable companies in history, adjusted for inflation". Yahoo! Finance Canada. 1 November 2012. Retrieved 12 June 2014.
- Derber, Charles: Corporation Nation: How Corporations Are Taking Over Our Lives and What We Can Do About It. (New York: St. Martin's Press, 1998, ISBN 0-312-19288-6)
- Gelderloos, Peter: Worshipping Power: An Anarchist View of Early State Formation. (Oakland, CA: AK Press, 2016)
- Hunter, Douglas: Half Moon: Henry Hudson and the Voyage that Redrew the Map of the New World. (Bloomsbury Press, 2009)
- Boxer, Charles R.: Jan Compagnie in Japan, 1600–1850: An Essay on the Cultural, Artistic and Scientific Influence Exercised by the Hollanders in Japan from the Seventeenth to the Nineteenth Centuries (Den Haag, Martinus Nijhoff, 1950)
- North, Michael; Kaufmann, Thomas DaCosta (2014), 'Introduction: Mediating Cultures,'; in Thomas DaCosta Kaufmann & Michael North (eds.), Mediating Netherlandish Art and Material Culture in Asia. (Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press, 2014), pp. 9–24
- Manilal, K. S. (1984), 'Hortus Malabaricus and the Ethnoiatrical Knowledge of Ancient Malabar,'. Ancient Science of Life 4(2): 96–99
- Manilal, K.S.: Hortus Malabaricus and the Socio-Cultural Heritage of India. (Calicut: Indian Association for Angiosperm Taxonomy, 2012)
- Dharmapalan, Biju (2012), 'Hortus Malabaricus: Celebrating the Tricentennial of a Botanic Epic,'. SR 49(10): 26–28
- Manilal, K. S. (2005), 'Hortus Malabaricus, a book on the plants of Malabar, and its impact on the religious of Christianity and Hinduism in the 17th century Kerala,'. Indian Journal of Botanical Research 1(1): 13–28
- Heniger, J.: Hendrik Adriaan van Reed tot Drakestein (1636–1691) and Hortus Malabaricus: A Contribution to the History of Dutch Colonial Botany. (Rotterdam: A.A.Balkema, 1986). Heniger (1986): "Allure by the fame of Dutch botany, the young Linnaeus here spent some years, 1735–1738, to complete his schooling."
- Skott, Christina (2010), 'The VOC and Swedish Natural History: The Transmission of Scientific Knowledge in the Eighteenth Century,'; in Siegfried Huigen, Jan L. de Jong & Elmer Kolfin (eds.), The Dutch Trading Companies as Knowledge Networks. (Brill, 2010), pp. 361–392
- Thijsse, Gerard (2018), 'A Contribution to the History of the Herbaria of George Clifford III (1685–1760),'. Archives of Natural History 45(1): 134–148. doi:10.3366/anh.2018.0489
- Jarvis, C.E. (2019), 'Georg Rumphius' Herbarium Amboinense (1741–1750) as a source of information on Indonesian plants for Carl Linnaeus (1707–1778),'. Gardens' Bulletin Singapore 71: 87–107
- "Abbé Nicolas Louis de Lacaille (1713–1762)". Department of Astronomy. University of Wisconsin-Madison. Retrieved 1 August 2016.
- Ian Ridpath. "Lacaille's southern planisphere".
- Koeman, Cornelis; Schilder, Günter; van Egmond, Marco; van der Krogt, Peter; Zandvliet, Kees: The History of Cartography, Volume 3: Cartography in the European Renaissance (Part 2: Low Countries), pp. 1246–1462, David Woodward ed. (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2007)
- Israel, Jonathan Irvine: Dutch Primacy in World Trade, 1585–1740. (Oxford University Press, 1990, 488 pp)
- Cook, Harold J.: Matters of Exchange: Commerce, Medicine, and Science in the Dutch Golden Age. (Yale University Press, 2008, 576 pp)
- Scott, G.; Hewitt, M.L.: Pioneers in Ethnopharmacology: The Dutch East India Company (VOC) at the Cape from 1650 to 1800. (Journal of Ethnopharmacology, Volume 115, Issue 3, 12 February 2008, pp. 339–60)
- Huigen, Siegfried; de Jong, Jan L.: The Dutch Trading Companies as Knowledge Networks (Intersections), p. 1, (BRILL, 2010)
- Swan, Claudia (2013). Lost in Translation: Exoticism in Early Modern Holland, in "Art in Iran and Europe in the 17th Century: Exchange and Reception", edited by Axel Langer (Museum Rietberg, Zurich, CH, 2013), p. 100-117.
- Schmidt, Benjamin: Inventing Exoticism: Geography, Globalism, and Europe's Early Modern World. (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2015, ISBN 0812246462)
- Friedrich, Susanne; Brendecke, Arndt; Ehrenpreis, Stefan (eds.): Transformations of Knowledge in Dutch Expansion (Pluralisierung & Autorität, 44). (Walter de Gruyter GmbH, 2015, 292 pp)
- Sargent, Matthew (2015), Scientists as Free Riders: Natural Resource Exploration and New Product Discovery in the Dutch East India Company, in Emily Erikson (ed.) Chartering Capitalism: Organizing Markets, States, and Publics (Political Power and Social Theory, Volume 29), pp. 219–238. (Emerald Group Publishing, ISBN 978-1-78560-093-7)
- Lach, Donald F.; Van Kley, Edwin J. (1993). Asia in the Making of Europe, Volume III: A Century of Advance. Book 1: Trade, Missions, Literature, p. 486–87
- Gunn, Geoffrey C. (2003). First Globalization: The Eurasian Exchange, 1500–1800, p. 152–53
- Nahm, Andrew C.; Hoare, James (2004). Historical Dictionary of the Republic of Korea, p. 241
- Seneviratne, Nadeera (2010), 'Globalising Hansken: An Elephant in The Netherlands,'; in Leelananda Prematilleke (ed.), Abhinandanamālā: Nandana Chutiwongs Felicitation Volume. (Bangkok: SPAFA Regional Centre of Archaeology and Fine Arts, 2010), pp. 259–273
- Kim, Myung-Eun; Bae, Soo-Jeong (2015), 'A research on the exchange of costume culture between Netherlands and Japan through 17th–18th century Dutch East India Company,'. The Korea Society of Costume – Journal of the Korean Society of Costume 65(4): 109–123
- Kim, Myung-Eun; Bae, Soo-Jeong (2015), 'A Study on Orientalism in the Paintings of Delft School in 17th Century Netherlands,'. The Korea Society of Costume – Journal of the Korean Society of Costume 65(8): 136–150
- Schrader, Stephanie; et al. (eds.): Rembrandt and the Inspiration of India. (Los Angeles, CA: J. Paul Getty Museum, 2018) ISBN 978-1-60606-552-5
- "Rembrandt and the Inspiration of India (catalogue)" (PDF). Retrieved 18 October 2019.
- Sugita, Genpaku: Rangaku Kotohajime: Dawn of Western Science in Japan. Translated from the Japanese by Matsumoto Ryozo and Kiyooka Eiichi. (Tokyo: Hokuseido Press, 1968)
- Goodman, Grant K.: Dutch Impact on Japan, 1640–1853. (Leiden: E.J. Brill, 1967)
- Nagazumi, Yōko (ed.): Large and Broad: The Dutch Impact on Early Modern Asia. Essays in Honor of Leonard Blussé. (Tokyo: Toyo Bunko, 2010)
- North, Michael; Kaufmann, Thomas DaCosta (eds.): Mediating Netherlandish Art and Material Culture in Asia. (Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press, 2014)
- "Rembrandt's Etchings Technique". Rembrandtpainting.net. Retrieved 17 February 2017.
- "Rembrandt's etchings and Japanese Echizen paper (Exhibitions, June 12th – September 20th 2015)". Rembrandthuis.nl. Retrieved 17 February 2017.
- Taylor, Peter J.: World City Network: A Global Urban Analysis. (New York: Routledge, 2004), p. 209
- Schilder, Günter (1993). A Continent Takes Shape: The Dutch Mapping of Australia, in Changing Coastlines, ed. M. Richards, & M. O'Connor, pp. 10–16. Canberra: National Library of Australia, 1993
- Zandvliet, Kees (1988). Golden Opportunities in Geopolitics: Cartography and the Dutch East India Company during the Lifetime of Abel Tasman, in Terra Australis: The Furthest Shore, ed. William Eisler and Bernard Smith, pp. 67–82. Sydney: International Cultural Corporation of Australia
- Schilder, Günter; Kok, Hans: Sailing for the East: History and Catalogue of Manuscript Charts on Vellum of the Dutch East India Company (VOC), 1602–1799. [Explokart: Utrecht Studies in the History of Cartography]. (BRILL, 2010, ISBN 9789061942603)
- "The Flemish Influence on Henry Hudson". The Brussels Journal. Retrieved 19 March 2011.
- Wroth, Lawrence (1970). The Voyages of Giovanni da Verrazzano, 1524–1528. New Haven: Yale University Press. ISBN 0-300-01207-1.
- Nieuwe Wereldt ofte Beschrijvinghe van West-Indien, uit veelerhande Schriften ende Aen-teekeningen van verscheyden Natien (Leiden, Bonaventure & Abraham Elseviers, 1625) p.84.
- Nieuwe Wereldt ofte Beschrijvinghe van West-Indien, uit veelerhande Schriften ende Aen-teekeningen van verscheyden Natien (Leiden, Bonaventure & Abraham Elseviers, 1625) p.84.
- Robert, Willem C.H.: The Dutch Explorations, 1605–1756, of the North and Northwest Coast of Australia: Extracts from Journals, Log-books and Other Documents Relating to These Voyages, original Dutch texts. (Amsterdam: Philo Press, 1973)
- Schilder, Günter, "New Cartographical Contributions to the Coastal Exploration of Australia in the Course of the Seventeenth Century," (Imago Mundi 26 )
- Schilder, Günter: Australia Unveiled: The Share of the Dutch Navigators in the Discovery of Australia. Translated from the German by Olaf Richter. (Amsterdam: Theatrum Orbis Terrarum, 1976)
- Schilder, Günter, "The Dutch Conception of New Holland in the Seventeenth and Early Eighteenth Centuries," (Technical Papers of the 12th Conference of the International Cartographic Association 2 )
- Schilder, Günter, Voyage to the Great South Land: William De Vlamingh 1696–1697, trans. C. De Heer (Sydney: Royal Australian Historical Society, 1985)
- "The AOTM Landings List 1606 – 1814". history and heritage division of the Australasian Hydrographic Society. Australia on the Map. 6 February 2008. Archived from the original on 17 February 2011. Retrieved 2 April 2013.
- J.P. Sigmond and L.H. Zuiderbaan (1979) Dutch Discoveries of Australia. Rigby Ltd, Australia. pp. 19–30 ISBN 0-7270-0800-5
- McIntyre, K.G. (1977) The Secret Discovery of Australia, Portuguese ventures 200 years before Cook, Souvenir Press, Menindie ISBN 0-285-62303-6
- Robert J. King, "The Jagiellonian Globe, a Key to the Puzzle of Jave la Grande", The Globe: Journal of the Australian Map Circle, No. 62, 2009, pp. 1–50.
- Robert J. King, "Regio Patalis: Australia on the map in 1531?", The Portolan| issue=82, Winter 2011, pp. 8–17.
- Menzies, Gavin (2002). 1421: The year China discovered the world. London: Bantam Press. ISBN 0-06-053763-9.
- Credit for the discovery of Australia was given to Frenchman Binot Paulmier de Gonneville (1504) in Brosses, Charles de (1756). Histoire des navigations aux Terres Australe. Paris.
- In the early 20th century, Lawrence Hargrave argued from archaeological evidence that Spain had established a colony in Botany Bay in the 16th century.
- Dikshitar, V. R. Ramachandra (1947). Origin and Spread of the Tamils. Adyar Library. p. 30.
- McHugh, Evan (2006). 1606: An Epic Adventure. Sydney: University of New South Wales Press. pp. 44–57. ISBN 978-0-86840-866-8.
- Garden 1977, p.8.
- Fenton, James (1884). A History of Tasmania: From Its Discovery in 1642 to the Present Time
- Pletcher, Kenneth (2010). The Britannica Guide to Explorers and Explorations That Changed the Modern World, p. 122-125
- Kirk, Robert W. (2012). Paradise Past: The Transformation of the South Pacific, 1520–1920, p. 31
- Newman, Terry (2005). "Appendix 2: Select chronology of renaming". Becoming Tasmania – Companion Web Site. Parliament of Tasmania. Archived from the original on 22 April 2011. Retrieved 26 August 2011.
- Harman, Graham (2016), 'Part Two: The Dutch East India Company,'; in Immaterialism: Objects and Social Theory, by Graham Harman. (John Wiley & Sons, 2016, ISBN 978-1-5095-0096-3), pp. 35–114
- Picard, Caroline (2 August 2016). "In The Late Afternoon of Modernism: An Interview with Graham Harman". Badatsports.com. Retrieved 2 March 2018.
- Phillips, Andrew; Sharman, J.C.: International Order in Diversity: War, Trade and Rule in the Indian Ocean. (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2015, ISBN 9781107084834), p. 109
- Byrnes, Rita (1996). South Africa: A Country Study. Washington: GPO for the Library of Congress. pp. Establishing a Slave Economy.
- Appiah, Anthony; Henry Louis Gates (2004). Africana: The Encyclopedia of the African and African American Experience. Oxford University Press. p. 732.[permanent dead link]
- Glete, Jan (2001), 'The Dutch Navy, Dutch State Formation and the Rise of Dutch Maritime Supremacy'. (Paper for the Anglo-American Conference for Historians: The Sea, 4–6 July 2001, University of London, Institute of Historical Research)
- Chua, Amy: Day of Empire: How Hyperpowers Rise to Global Dominance – and Why They Fall. (New York: Anchor Books, 2009)
- Tuchman, Barbara W.: The First Salute: A View of the American Revolution. (The Random House, 1989, 368pp)
- Siegal, Nina (22 May 2013). "A Slice of Russia in Amsterdam". The New York Times. Retrieved 18 April 2016.
- Balk, G.L.; van Dijk, F.; Kortlang, D.J.; Gaastra, F.S. et al.: The Archives of the Dutch East India Company (VOC) and the Local Institutions in Batavia (Jakarta). (BRILL, 2007, ISBN 9789004163652)
- "Archives of the Dutch East India Company [Documentary heritage submitted by Netherlands and recommended for inclusion in the Memory of the World Register in 2003]". UNESCO. Retrieved 2 February 2017.
- Raben, Remco (2013)
- Knobel, E. B. (1917). On Frederick de Houtman's Catalogue of Southern Stars, and the Origin of the Southern Constellations. (Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, Vol. 77, pp. 414–32)
- Sawyer Hogg, Helen (1951). "Out of Old Books (Pieter Dircksz Keijser, Delineator of the Southern Constellations)". Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada. 45: 215. Bibcode:1951JRASC..45..215S.
- Dekker, Elly (1987). Early Explorations of the Southern Celestial Sky. (Annals of Science 44, pp. 439–70)
- Dekker, Elly (1987). On the Dispersal of Knowledge of the Southern Celestial Sky. (Der Globusfreund, 35–37, pp. 211–30)
- Verbunt, Frank; van Gent, Robert H. (2011). Early Star Catalogues of the Southern Sky: De Houtman, Kepler (Second and Third Classes), and Halley. (Astronomy & Astrophysics 530)
- Saldanha, Arun (2011). The Itineraries of Geography: Jan Huygen van Linschoten's "Itinerario" and Dutch Expeditions to the Indian Ocean, 1594–1602. (Annals of the Association of American Geographers, Vol. 101, No. 1 [January 2011], pp. 149–177)
- Freedman, Roy S.: Introduction to Financial Technology. (Academic Press, 2006, ISBN 0123704782)
- DK Publishing (Dorling Kindersley): The Business Book (Big Ideas Simply Explained). (DK Publishing, 2014, ISBN 1465415858)
- Mueller, Dennis C. (ed.): The Oxford Handbook of Capitalism. (Oxford University Press, 2012, ISBN 0195391179), p. 333
- Kestenbaum, David (29 January 2015). "The Spicy History of Short Selling Stocks". NPR. Retrieved 29 April 2018.
- Stringham, Edward Peter (5 October 2015). "How Private Governance Made the Modern World Possible". Cato Unbound (www.cato-unbound.org). Retrieved 15 August 2017.
- Wilken, Uffe (4 November 2013). "Elephant painted by Rembrandt designated the type specimen for its species". The University of Copenhagen, Faculty of Science (www.science.ku.dk). Retrieved 15 November 2017.
- Hooper, Rowan (5 November 2013). "This Rembrandt is science's first Asian elephant". New Scientist. Retrieved 15 November 2017.
- "Roslin team helps solve elephant riddle". The University of Edinburgh (www.ed.ac.uk). 5 April 2016. Retrieved 11 November 2017.
- Balk, G.L.; van Dijk, F.; Kortlang, D.J.; Gaastra, F.S.: The Archives of the Dutch East India Company (VOC) and the Local Institutions in Batavia (Jakarta). (Leiden: Brill, 2007) ISBN 9789004163652)
- Boxer, C.R. "The Dutch East India Company and the China Trade" History Today (Nov 1979), Vol. 29 Issue 11, p741–750; covers 1600 to 1800; online
- Gaastra, Femme: De geschiedenis van de VOC. (Zutphen: Walburg Pers, 1991) [in Dutch]
- Gaastra, Femme: The Dutch East India Company: Expansion and Decline. (Zutphen: Walburg Pers, 2003)
- Landwehr, J.; van der Krogt, P.: VOC: A Bibliography of Publications Relating to the Dutch East India Company, 1602–1800. (Utrecht: HES, 1991)
- Meilink-Roelofsz, M.A.P.; van Opstall, M.E.; Schutte, G.J. (eds.): Dutch Authors on Asian History: A Selection of Dutch Historiography on the Verenigde Oostindische Compagnie. (Dordrecht: KITLV, 1988)
- Meilink-Roelofsz, M.A.P.; Raben, R.; Spijkerman, H. (eds.): De Archieven van de Verenigde Oostindische Compagnie (1602–1795) [The Archives of the Dutch East India Company (1602–1795)]. ('s-Gravenhage: SDU Uitgeveri, 1992) [in Dutch]
- Gerritsen, Rupert (ed.): A translation of the charter of the Dutch East Indies Company (Verenigde Oostindische Compagnie or VOC): Granted by the States General of the United Netherlands, 20 March 1602. Translated from the Dutch by Peter Reynders. (Canberra: Australia on the Map Division of the Australasian Hydrographic Society, 2009)
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Dutch East India Company.|
|Dutch Wikisource has original text related to this article:|
- Oldest share – the oldest share in the world (VOC 1606)
- "A taste of adventure – The history of spices is the history of trade", The Economist, 17 December 1998.
- Voyages by VOC ships to Australia
- "Why did the Largest Corporation in the World go Broke?"
- Death of an East Indiaman
- VOC voyages – online database of voyages of VOC ships
- Atlas of Mutual Heritage – online atlas of VOC and WIC settlements
- (in Dutch) Database of VOC crew members
- VOC Historical Society
- VOC Warfare
- VOC archive from the Indonesian national archives