Van der Holdt was born in Venlo, Limburg to a merchant and his wife. He was under the employ of the Venetian republic in the 1380s as a trader and was vital in Venetian commerce with its Brunanter colony. He married a Venetian woman, Maria Castelfiore in 1388 and had two sons, Willem and Johan. By the 1410s he left the employment of the Venetians and became a supporter of the Dutch against the Venetians. He served as the first mayor of Grijzestad from 1417-1425. In 1427 he attended the Convention of Grijzestad and was a signatory of the Declaration of Independence. In early 1428 van der Holdt acquired an illness and died that May.