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4 foreign investors in the running for trophy in Flanders

Trophy glory in the making! Flanders Investment & Trade (FIT) has just revealed the names of its 2022 Foreign Investment of the Year Trophy nominees. This year, four international companies with recent investments in Flanders will be competing for the coveted trophy: Dutch potato processing group Aviko, French retailer Carrefour, the European branch of Japanese cooling & heating solutions expert Daikin, and Swedish car manufacturer Volvo Cars.

With the Foreign Investment of the Year Trophy, FIT recognizes the efforts of foreign companies that recently chose the region of Flanders as an investment location. The winner will be revealed at the 10th-anniversary edition of the Foreign Investment Trophy event on 22 March 2022.

And the nominees are…

Aviko (Netherlands) – for its fries factory in Poperinge

Some say ‘potato’, they say ‘potential’. Dutch potato processing group Aviko is opening one of the world’s largest, most efficient and sustainable fries factories in Poperinge, Flanders. Representing an investment of EUR 200 million and generating 150 jobs, the site will feature high-tech machinery that minimizes both residual waste and energy consumption. From April 2022 onward, it will produce up to 175,000 tons of frozen fries and 11,000 tons of dried potato flakes per year.

Carrefour (France) – for moving its bakery division to Ternat

Sweet! French retail corporation Carrefour is moving its bakery division, Atelier Eclair, to a state-of-the-art production site in Ternat, Flanders. There, it will experiment with new recipes, ingredients and baking techniques, inspired by Flanders’ longstanding bakery tradition. Planned for launch in 2022, the site will be responsible for the lion’s share of cakes, pastries, eclairs and other sweets destined for the Belgian market. With a total investment of EUR 28 million, the project is set to create 20 additional jobs.

Daikin Europe (Japan) – for its global innovation center in Ghent

Innovation in the air: there will be loads of it at the new R&D center of cooling & heating solution expert Daikin Europe, the European branch of the Japanese namesake multinational. With construction scheduled to completed by 2024 at the Tech Lane Ghent Science Park in Flanders, the new center will become Daikin Europe’s global innovation and knowledge hub for heat pumps and sustainable refrigeration technologies. The project represents an investment of EUR 140 million and will create 135 extra jobs.

Volvo Cars (Sweden) – for electrifying its Ghent e-car production hub

Moving its e-car production into top gear, Swedish car manufacturer Volvo Cars is channeling no less than EUR 150 million into its existing production site at North Sea Port Ghent. The overall goal? To turn Volvo Car Gent into a fully electrified production hub. Generating at least 500 new jobs, the investment project will make sure that the Flanders-based site plays a pivotal role in Volvo Cars’ global ambitions to be climate neutral by 2025 and fully electrified by 2030.

Your vote counts!

Who will take the trophy home? That’s up to you! The nominee with the most votes after three rounds of voting – one by the public online, one by a professional jury and one by the audience present at the event – will be crowned the winner.

About the ceremony and trophies

Since 2013, Flanders Investment & Trade (FIT) has been hosting the annual Foreign Investment Trophy ceremony to celebrate, highlight and recognize the efforts of foreign companies that decide to invest in Flanders.

Besides the Foreign Investment of the Year Trophy, FIT will present two additional trophies. The Lifetime Achievement Trophy will be awarded to a foreign firm with a longstanding history and track record in Flanders, and the Newcomer of the Year Trophy will go to a foreign company that has just invested in the region for the very first time. Stay tuned for the reveal of all winners on 22 March!

More info

Foreign Investment Trophy
Reported by
Flanders Investment & Trade
22 February 2022

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