How it all began

The ROM story

rom our story

On this page you will find the most important moments in the history of ROM bv.
 

Would you like to read more besides this page? About important milestones, successes, failures and lessons learned? And are you curious how Eugène Plompen, director of ROM bv, answers questions such as:
 

 How will technology affect the camera inspection and cleaning market in the future?
 

 How will future skilled sewer cleaners shape this industry 40 years from now?
 

You can read it in this article

The story of Eugene Plompen - history ROM bv

Would you like to take a tour of our factory?

Would you like to see where top quality is created? Come and see how we produce our quality ma chines using the latest technology. Not only is sustainability a central theme, but our people are as well. They are the engine behind our success.

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1980 | IT ALL STARTED IN AN OLD BAKERY

Where you could once smell the scent of fresh baked bread, Jacques Eijkens and Frans Zijnen started a new adventure with the launch of ROM Technische Handelsonderneming. In an old bakery at the Kromme Mijdrechtsstreet in Amsterdam they started selling RIDGID drain cleaners.

1980 | THE FIRST INVOICE BOOKLET

The first invoice booklet from 1980 with the names of customers who have been with us since the beginning and who have stayed with us. And we are very proud of this

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1983 | EUGÉNE PLOMPEN STARTS AT ROM IN A DOUBLE FUNCTION

Eugéne Plompen begins at ROM. As a sales representative and service mechanic. In the morning he works in the shop in overalls. After lunch he switches to a suit and tie. Many plumbers, drain cleaning companies and municipalities are persuade by him on the RIDGID quality.

1983 | FREE SERVICE FOR ALL RIDGID USERS

ROM comes up with a playful promotion. RIDGID End-users get free service. Just the parts and accessories are to be paid. It turns out to be extremely successful as they have built a loyal client base.

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1984 | CUSTOMERS STICK WITH ROM EN CHOOSE FOR YEARLY SERVICE

ROM  Customers are enthusiastic about the free service received. Happy customers sign yearly service contracts. This takes away the concerns of service and guarantees a well running RIDGID machine

1984 | START OF IN - HOUSE PRODUCTION

We have been producing our own machines in house since 1984. First at Arie Hissink's in Zutphen, and then in Putten in Joop Ceelen's garage

ROM became a limited liability company in 1984.

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1985 | THE START OF PRODUCTS BEING EXPORTED

Machines were exported abroad for the first time in 1985. This ROM 1500, for example, was shipped to Singapore. The start of many more e xport orders.

1985 | THE FIRST TRAILER FOR THE DUTCH MARKET

The first trailer for the Dutch market was produced and delivered.

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1986 | AMSTERDAM GETS TRADED FOR BARNEVELD

Next to the sales of RIDGID equipment, ROM produces high pressure drain cleaning machines. ROM also initiates the production of portable toilet servicing machines. Amsterdam gets traded for a bigger building in Barneveld. More productionspace and a showroom location gives customers the chance to experience RIDGID and ROM.

1986 | THE FIRST TOILET SERVICE UNITS WERE MADE FROM AN OLD GAS TANK

ROM started the production of t oilet service machines in 1986. The first units were made from an old gas tank.

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1986 | ROM EXPANDS RANGE

ROM expands the production line. In addition to the trailers and toilet service units, sewer combis and built-in units are now also being built.

1994 | ROM OPENS RIDGID EXPERIENCE CENTER

Drain cleaning equipment and RIDGID machines are more popular than ever. To comply with the current demand, extra sales representatives are hired and trained as ROM and RIDGID specialists. ROM moves to a bigger building (the current one in the Harselaarseweg in Barneveld) that partially is set up as a RIDGID experience center for the ultimate experience.

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1997 | LAUNCH OF RIDGIDKOLLMANN.COM

It is the beginning of the internet age. In addition to extra sales guys and an experience center, a website is a great addition as a sales tool. RIDGIDKollmann.com is born. At first mainly as information provider. For example, only 8 orders came in in the first year. More than 20 years later, many see this webshop as THE place to buy their RIDGID gear.

1998 | ROM & RIDGID COLLABORATE ON THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE KJ1590 DRAIN CLEANER.

The RIDGID KJ1590 is being designed together with RIDGID. The production in Europe is provided by ROM. The distribution by RIDGID. More than 20 years later, the second model, the KJ1590II, is a real bestseller.

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2000 | CZECH REPUBLIC AND SLOVAKIA GET TO KNOW ROM AND RIDGID

The demand for ROM high-pressure sewer cleaning machines continues to grow at an incremental rate. Barneveld is too small, so a second production location is being established in the Czech Republic. It gets the attention of Plumbers and sewer cleaners from the Czech Republic and Slovakia so the decision is made not only to produce, but also to sell in these countries.

2004 | ROM BECOMES PART OF THE KOKS GROUP

Eugéne, who started as a service engineer and sales representative, now has more than 20 years of experience in the field of sewer cleaning machines and RIDGID equipment. Jacques Eijkens sells his shares to the KOKS Group. A new period dawns for Eugéne as Managing Director of ROM bv and his collaboration with RIDGID.

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2015 | A SMALL GLOBAL PLAYER

More than ten thousand ROM sewer cleaning machines are deployed daily all over the world. For the Netherlands, Belgium, Czech Republic and Slovakia ROM is besides a producer of sewer cleaning machines also the specialist for RIDGID Underground equipment. The one stop for plumbers, sewer cleaners and municipalities in the field of sewer cleaning machines, pipe inspection and detection equipment.

 

2018 | ROM CONTINUES TO INNOVATE

ROM will introduce many innovations in 2018, including the new sewer jetting built-in unit ROM EcoFit, the eSTEAM smoke generator, new options on the SmartCombi PRO and more.

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2018 ROM AND RIDGID ON THE ROAD

RIDGID and ROM start to work alongside even more intensively. With a truck full of RIDGID equipment, sewer cleaners, plumbers and visited municipalities throughout the Netherlands and Belgium are being convinced of the RIDGID quality. This 'Roadshow' doesn't go unnoticed in the RIDGID headquarters in the US.

2018 | ROM IS A GLOBAL MARKET LEADER

With over 40 years of experience and more than 50 local partners in 35 countries, ROM has grown into a globally operating and dynamic company. Literally from the Sahara to the North Pole.

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2020 | RENEWED RIDGID EXPERIENCE CENTER

Reconstruction works are being executed in order to have the staff work in a more pleasant and efficient environment. Also the RIDGID Experience Center gets a make-over to provide an even better experience for visitors of the showroom.