Internationals in Eindhoven: Claudia from Italy


Door Sabine te Braake

People from many different countries live, study and work in Eindhoven. Every week, E52 has a talk with an international about what brought them here and what life is like in Eindhoven. Read all the stories here.

Who: Claudia Caparelli
Country of Origin: Italy
Work: Biomedical Engineer at Bambi Medical

“Would you like a cup of coffee?” Claudia asks when we enter her office. Yes, we would. “I never use the common machine. I’m Italian and of course, I like a good espresso. So we put a machine here in the office.” The office is the workplace of Bambi Medical on the High Tech Campus. “I’m involved in the product development of the Bambi Belt, our first product and I’m working together with Holst Centre and Demcon on the prototype. Currently, we have a working prototype and we are in the phase of getting the regulations in order to start the clinical trials in hospitals.”

Claudia came to Eindhoven shortly after her boyfriend started at Philips Healthcare in the fall of 2015. “I visited him in and wanted to check out if there were any career opportunities for me here. My background is in medical engineering and in Italy, I worked in a hospital as a Clinical Engineer. I went to a career event at the High Tech Campus. HighTechXL was also present and they told me there was one medical start-up that could be interesting for me: Bambi Medical. Very quick after the event, I got an interview and basically, I could start right away! Fabio, the CEO of Bambi, actually asked: can you start tomorrow? But I was here only for two weeks and still had a lot going on in Italy. I decided to go for it, packed my things in Italy and moved in with my boyfriend in Eindhoven. It was a big step: a new job in a new country, living together. But I’m very happy I did it. Of course, I have a lot of contact with my family. They visit regularly.”

claudia at Lucifer

Claudia: “If have Italian friends or family over for a visit, I take them to Lucifer at the Kleine Berg. They have the best coffee in town.” / Photography: Diewke van den Heuvel

Within a year Claudia set up her new life in Eindhoven, including taking a Dutch class. At first, she made a lot of friends through the HighTechXL program where Bambi Medical was part of. “Today we share the office at High Tech Plaza with another start-up from HighTechXL called USONO. With them, we feel at home in the office and sometimes we go out together. The atmosphere within Bambi Medical is very good. For instance, Fabio is our CEO, but not the ‘boss’. He is very friendly and he gives us the credits and the responsibility for the things we do. I’m really glad to be part of the team.”

And how is life in Eindhoven? “Before I came here, I had the idea of the north of Europe that the people maybe would be less friendly, a bit cold. But that’s not true. People here are always willing to help. It is an easy country. Everything takes less time than in Italy. Opening a bank account in 10 minutes, I couldn’t believe that was possible. On the other hand, the rhythm of the day is completely different. I’m used to stores being open at night and restaurants that serve food until midnight. Here the stores, except grocery stores, close at 18:00 and the restaurants close their kitchen at 21:30. We spent a lot more time at home at night.”

And where do you like to go in your spare time? “I like Kleine Berg and love to drink coffee at Lucifer. If have Italian friends or family over for a visit, I take them there. They have the best coffee in town. I also like to go to the FeelGood Market on Strijp S and the Saturday market on the Woenselse Markt. And Eindhoven has a lot of parks, that is not common in the city where I used to live in Italy. I love the spot by the Dommel river next to the Van Abbemuseum. I really miss the sun and the weather of the south of Italy, so with Spring on its way, you will find me in the parks more often!”