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3 foreign investors receive trophies in Flanders

Three was the magic number for the tenth-consecutive Foreign Investment Trophy! Hosted by Flanders Investment Trade (FIT) in Technopolis Mechelen on 22 March 2022, the ceremony saw three prestigious trophies being presented to international companies with investments in Flanders. Introducing the new champions!

L-R: Tom Verbaeten, Chief Supply Chain Officer at CNH Industrial - Ying Huang, CEO Legend Biotech - Jan Jambon, Flanders’ Minister-President - Frans Hoorelbeke – Honorable Senior Advisor Daikin - Wim De Schacht, Vice President of Daikin Europe - Xavier Vanrolleghem, Head of Invest at Flanders Investment & Trade

Daikin Europe wins 2022 Foreign Investment of the Year Trophy

Daikin Europe, the European branch of the Japanese namesake multinational, took home the 2022 Foreign Investment of the Year Trophy. It was Flanders’ Minister-President Jan Jambon who announced the victory. The indoor climate expert was nominated for the trophy alongside Dutch potato processor Aviko, French retailer Carrefour and Swedish carmaker Volvo Cars. Three voting rounds – by the online public, a professional jury and the audience at the event – determined the outcome. 

L-R: Wim De Schacht, Vice President of Daikin Europe  - Jan Jambon, Flanders’ Minister-President - Frans Hoorelbeke – Honorable Senior Advisor Daikin - Xavier Vanrolleghem, Head of Invest at Flanders Investment & Trade 

Daikin Europe won the trophy for its project in Tech Lane Ghent Science Park. There, the company is investing EUR 140 million in a new innovation center. Construction should be completed by 2024 and the investment will create 135 new jobs. The center will play a key role in both Daikin’s innovation and sustainability strategy. As such, it will focus on heat pumps, cooling technologies for a sustainable cold chain and IoT applications for smart energy use. 

Dive into the details of Daikin Europe’s winning project

Celebrating CNH Industrial’s longstanding track record

In addition to recent investors, the Foreign Investment Trophy event also celebrates longstanding fans of Flanders. As such, CNH Industrial received the 2022 Lifetime Achievement Trophy from Flanders’ Minister-President Jan Jambon. The agricultural equipment manufacturer’s roots in Flanders date back over a century. Its Zedelgem site has existed since 1906 and has been operating under the CNH banner since 1999. 

Tom Verbaeten, Chief Supply Chain Officer at CNH Industrial (4th from the left) & team - Jan Jambon, Flanders’ Minister-President (5th from the left) - Xavier Vanrolleghem, Head of Invest at Flanders Investment & Trade (3rd from the right)

Over the decades, the site has grown into CNH Industrial’s global center of excellence for forage harvesters, large square balers and combines. Meanwhile, the multinational’s Antwerp production site also boasts an extensive track record. Today, it produces a range of components that are shipped to sister factories worldwide

The Lifetime Achievement Trophy is a token of appreciation for CNH Industrial’s long, successful track record in Flanders and its strong ties to our region. This leading company represents decades of local anchoring, investing millions of euros and creating thousands of jobs in Flanders.

Jan Jambon
Minister-President of Flanders

Crowning Legend Biotech’s first steps in Flanders

Moving on from a longstanding foreign investor in Flanders, the Foreign Investment Trophy also celebrates a company that has just set foot on Flanders’ soil for the very first time. In this regard, Flanders’ Minister-President Jan Jambon presented the 2022 Newcomer of the Year Trophy to Legend Biotech

L-R: CEO Legend Biotech Ying Huang  - Jan Jambon, Flanders’ Minister-President - Liz Gosen, SVP of Global Technical Operations at Legend Biotech - Birk Vanderweeën, General Manager Europe at Legend Biotech - Xavier Vanrolleghem, Head of Invest at Flanders Investment & Trade

In partnership with Janssen Pharmaceutica, the US-based global biotech firm chose Ghent as the home of its first production site in Europe. Construction should be completed by 2023. Once it receives the green light from the Federal Agency for Medicines and Health Products, Legend Biotech will operate the site and oversee the clinical and commercial production of a new CAR-T cell therapy. This kind of therapy involves reprogramming a person’s own blood cells to attack cancer cells in a targeted way. 

Although it’s a ‘new kid on the block’ in Flanders, Legend Biotech strengthens the purview of our region’s rock-solid life sciences & health ecosystem. Not only is the fast-growing company nurturing a lot of local talent at its Ghent site, it is also aiming to further expand its European production with Flanders as its home base!

Claire Tillekaerts
CEO of Flanders Investment & Trade

Foreign Investment Trophy glory

The crowning of these three remarkable companies took place during Flanders Investment & Trade’s tenth anniversary ceremony for the Foreign Investment Trophy. In the past decade, over 60 international businesses with investments in Flanders have graced the annual ceremony’s mainstage. Discover their stories in the hall of fame. 

More info

Foreign Investment Trophy
Reported by
Flanders Investment & Trade
23 March 2022

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