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Ali Niknam

The last Uitblinker before De Kapiteinenlijn goes on holiday for a month is none other than the founder of Bunq Bank, Ali Niknam (40). After a recent cash injection of 193 million euros by a British investor, the Netherlands is one unicorn richer. What made Ali Niknam a billionaire in one fell swoop: 'To me, it's just numbers, money doesn't touch me'. In the interview we get to know the ambitious entrepreneur Ali: 'In 2025 Bunq is not only in the Netherlands, but also in Germany and France and we have crossed the pond, we have made a start in the US'. Ali's fearless side also emerges: 'We have been actively opposed by the big boys', he believes that you learn nothing without making mistakes: 'But I haven't made a single mistake that has put me out of business'. How does Ali see the development of bitcoin? 'I think the crypto market will be banned by 2025'.

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The podcast platform De Kapiteinenlijn features inspiring and upbeat conversations with CAPITALS. The chiefs, the bosses, the supreme gods, the rock stars and the leaders of companies and movements. Yves goes in search of interpretation, depth, leadership and a happy note. The Captains' Line is a movement. Highlight of the week: the weekly podcast show The GYGS with business friend Erik de Vlieger.

Step aboard? Become a CAPTAIN here!



26 MARCH 2021

Media man Yves Gijrath and entrepreneur Erik de Vlieger have their own podcast platform. The Captain's LineThe first paid podcast community in the Netherlands.

More than half of the Dutch listen to podcasts. More and more podcast creators are testing bonus content for payment, but not one platform took the pioneering step of pouring all its podcasts into a membership. Yves Gijrath and business friend Erik de Vlieger are making a bold pioneering move with the launch of their new movement DE KAPITEINENLIJN; the podcast platform for listeners looking for a different sound, making content and discovery no longer dependent on big tech giants like Youtube, Spotify, I-Tunes or Soundcloud. DE KAPITEINENLIJN: pioneering move and new experience in the podcast field in the Netherlands.

In the weekly podcast show The GYGS, which Gijrath & De Vlieger started in September 2020, they discuss the news of the week. As if you were secretly listening in on their most confidential telephone conversations. Nothing is left unsaid: they wonder about the news, politics and analyse the role of the media. They are obsessed with everything that is newsworthy and denounce every form of politically correct behaviour. After a good hour of Gijrath & De Vlieger, you'll have the necessary convictions for social media or the kitchen table. Whatever happens: 'tomorrow is a new day', according to the gentlemen.

"For our findings, we make use of our extensive rolodex of contacts and a growing network of driven citizen journalists"

The frequently listened to podcast '1-2-tje met Yves' currently attracts an average of 400,000 listeners per month. As of Friday 26 March, the series has a new 'home', or rather a new 'ship': WWW.DEKAPITEINENLIJN.NL.

Gijrath: 'THE CAPITAL LINE is a new movement. ''Think of us as the Dutch Bellingcat''. In recent months, Erik and I have made one revelation after another. For our findings we use our extensive rolodex of contacts and a growing network of passionate citizen journalists. De Vlieger: 'During Corona, Yves and I fell from one surprise to another. At a certain point we said to each other: shall we just let people listen to our thoughts and what we discuss with each other? This thought was transformed into a decisive platform with a loud and clear sound.' Gijrath: 'We agreed that we would talk without a filter. Our experience was always that the best conversations on TV programmes took place before the show and after the show.

We had no doubt, this is what we wanted. No fear of making mistakes either. Just do it. Our opinions are our opinions and facts are facts. That's our guiding principle.' This led to regular listener Thomas Acda agreeing to make a unique song about the podcast. Gijrath: 'It's quite unusual what we do. We address the media on their way of reporting. Of course we are proud of all those beautiful newspapers and programmes we have, but during corona there is a kind of tipping point that we don't like.' De Vlieger: 'We dig around for news and know no filter. Our work has resulted in a database of scoops. Whether it was Ab Osterhaus' 5.6 million euro earnings from shares at the time of the last health crisis or the possible funding of Forum for Democracy at the American embassy. Gijrath: 'The course of events surrounding Recovery NL with the departure of Barbara Baarsma also occupied us. We have come to the conclusion that politics unfortunately interfered in the plans of Herstel-NL. Baarsma has still not given a personal reaction to the suggestion of political pressure. A godsend!' Gijrath & De Vlieger share their personal experiences and also do not hesitate to make firm predictions.

De Vlieger: 'I've been an entrepreneur for 40 years now. I've never had so many reactions to what I do with Yves. The comparisons are all around us: Grijpstra & De Gier, Waldorf & Statler, Derksen & Genee, Van Kooten & De Bie, Q&Q, Tintin & Captain Haddock and Barend & Van Dorp. Nice of course, all those comparisons, but we're just Gijrath & De Vlieger and that chemistry is inexplicable, it's unique. It all happens spontaneously and that sound has led to an unprecedented loyal group of more than 100,000 regular followers every week'.

In addition to the high-profile series The GYGS, Gijrath also talks to prominent entrepreneurs and policymakers on a weekly basis in the series 'Uitblinkers'. The chiefs, the bosses, the supreme gods, the rock stars and the leaders of companies and movements. In his podcast series, Gijrath goes in search of interpretation, depth and leadership.

The listener gets a surprising look behind the scenes of many prominent people. The guest list is extremely diverse, but all guests have one thing in common: they excel in their field. The media entrepreneur had stimulating and inspiring conversations with, among others, Jumbo CEO Frits van Eerd, professor Diederik Gommers, influencer Kaj Gorgels, Quote editor-in-chief Paul van Riessen, Albert Verlinde, author Mark Koster, founder of Young Capital Hugo de Koning and hospitality tycoon Won Yip.

"With an average of 400 thousand listeners per month on the counter, the '1-2-tjes met Yves' are an established name in the podcast world."

Gijrath: '2020 was a turbulent year. The year in which I started with the podcast series 'Ondernemen in tijden van corona' and 'Uitblinkers'. It was a hit. Whether it was the interview with Louis van Gaal that went viral or the personal outpourings of Jan des Bouvrie. My guests feel free to say more than in regular interviews. In addition, podcasts lend themselves perfectly to in-depth discussions, because there is no time clock. The show with Erik has become the icing on the cake. We sat together all week brainstorming about how we could separate our movement from the existing podcast platforms. Then you're just another number in the queue and they decide when and how often you're interrupted by advertising. I said to Erik: bye bye BIG TECH, we are going to do it ourselves. All or nothing. De Vlieger: 'I was immediately enthusiastic, together we have about eighty years of experience. If we go all in for once and leave nothing unsaid, it might just become a hit. After a first successful paid test in February of this year with a special about The Great Reset, the new movement is a fact. Gijrath: 'We also see opportunities for a future talk show on television, an own Token and an online opinion panel. This year the podcast success continues and the podcast platform DE KAPITEINENLIJN already guarantees a hefty dose of unsullied opinions, visions and thoughts. Podcast creator Yves Gijrath and his colleague Erik de Vlieger don't shy away from a subject and with their motto 'Never follow the crowd', every Friday at 17.00 hrs you can't help but wonder what the gentlemen will come up with.

If you want to be part of the growing movement of dissenters and listen to the popular podcasts, you can register as a 'captain' as of Friday, 26 March 2021. The paid membership will give you access to the weekly new episodes of The GYGS with Gijrath & de Vlieger, the archive with over 125 special guests and the conversations with the 'Outstanding' of the week. Binge listening is also possible: the entire podcast library of the '1-2's with Yves' are accessible to the captains. Gijrath: 'In June 2022 members will also have access to the CAPITAL FESTIVAL: BON DIA CAPITAO. We are going to organise a living version of the podcast. A festival with music, food and unique content.' De Vlieger: 'We have high hopes for our initiative. Our movement is in dire need of a different sound. Gijrath: 'We're going to be the first to show that member-based podcast communities are the future.