"Wallonia is ideally located to serve our major markets”
In 2006, American pharmaceutical group Johnson & Johnson set up the European Distribution Centre for its Medical Device and Diagnostics branch in Courcelles. On a surface area of 47,000 m², this centre distributes 54,000 products to 21 European countries. It also supplies depots across the whole world with products manufactured in Europe. The site has a preparation platform which directs the parcels according to their weight and volume ton one of eight sorting lines, identified according to destination country and transporter.
"Wallonia", explains Jean-Michel Colnot, Operations Director, “is ideally located for shipping by road to our two major markets, France and Germany, and its close to freight airports at Liège and Brussels. The region has the support of the public authorities and all of the workforce we need is available. Our team work 7days a week, which enables us to handle an average of 4,000 orders a day."
“The choice of Lessines? A question of technical expertise and productivity!”
The American group has inaugurated its new site accommodating it’s administrative and research services. The building, which required investment of 40 million euros, offers Baxter a total area of 13,500 square metres, 3,000 m² of which is given over to laboratories and a warehouse. It accommodates 430 people, 250 of which are researchers. Developed for 500 people, the building thus offers some room for growth. This new site, the second of the group’s European research centres after Orth, close to Vienna (Austria), is a token of the lasting nature of the group’s presence in Belgium.
«Liège is the primary logistics region of Europe, and this is one of the reasons why we came here.»
Michele Bosa, General Manager
Active in the design and production of contact lenses, American group CooperVision set up its European Distribution Centre in the Liège region in February 2006. This new European hub represented an investment of 5 million Euros for the third largest contact lens manufacturer in the world, and led to the creation of around seventy jobs in the first phase. Today, 135 persons work in the 6,500 m² centre, located in buildings rented from Vincent Logistics in Hauts-Sarts.
The main reasons why the American management was convinced by Liège are to be found in the central position it occupies in Europe and its many means of communications. Assistance and subsidies offered by the Walloon Region for the creation of jobs also played a part in tipping the balance. Another explanation for the interest shown by CooperVision is the skill of the people the company’s management met. Marketing its lenses across the globe, CooperVision has been able to shorten its delivery times to European clients, and particularly to northern continental Europe. It is a little early to talk of it, but an expansion of the centre is being envisaged.
Joe D’Silva, CEO
Patients’ & Consumers’ Pharma is seeking to set up a "Personalized Medications Product Development Center" for the development of its technologies. BioLog has been very helpful in our investigations regarding the possibility of locating such a center in the Wallonia region of Belgium. BioLog has provided support, advice and introductions to move the process from an idea to a detailed investigation.