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ElaN Languages (Flanders) brings French investor on board

Based in Heusden-Zolder (Flanders), ElaN Languages is the largest translation company in the Benelux. The company is now bringing French investor Andera Partners on board as a shareholder. The goal is to quadruple its turnover in the next seven to ten years and become one of the world’s top 30 language companies.

Robrecht Beliën, co-CEO of ElaN Languages

Robrecht Beliën, co-CEO of ElaN Languages

From top 70 to top 30

ElaN Languages, which offers translation and interpreting services as well as language training, has grown into a relatively large player since its establishment back in 1990. Generating an annual turnover of around EUR 20 million, the Flanders-based company serves some 2,000 customers and employs 80 people in four offices across Belgium and the Netherlands. Its customer portfolio includes major organizations such as the European Commission, Coca-Cola, Colruyt, Lidl, Elia and Randstad. 

In the Benelux, ElaN Languages is the largest player in its sector. Worldwide, it ranks among the top 70 language providers, according to co-CEO Robrecht Beliën. 

In the next seven to ten years, we want to make it into the global top 30. To do that, we have to quadruple our turnover to reach around EUR 80 million.

Robrecht Beliën
co-CEO of ElaN Languages

Financial clout

ElaN wants to achieve its ambitions through organic growth, but also through acquisitions. The company is aiming for bigger deals than its previous acquisitions in Belgium and the Netherlands. “Those were transactions with a turnover of up to EUR 3 million; now we are looking at companies with a turnover of over EUR 3 million. But this means that ElaN needs to have greater financial clout,” explains Beliën.

To that end, the language company is joining up with Andera Partners. In turn, the French private equity group will acquire a majority stake in ElaN Languages.

Larger-scale acquisitions

“With Andera as a partner, we can further increase our growth rate and make acquisitions on a somewhat larger scale. This can help us to strengthen our European ambitions,” says Beliën. For new acquisitions, the company is mainly looking at the Benelux and France, but also at Southern Europe and Scandinavia. 

Learn more about investing in Flanders. 

More info

ElaN Languages
Reported by
newspaper De Tijd
19 May 2022

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