Kaneka wins the Foreign Investment Trophy 2018
Westerlo, Belgium – February 28th, 2018 – Yesterday, the Japanese specialty chemicals firm Kaneka Belgium in Westerlo-Oevel won the Foreign Investment of the Year Trophy 2018 at FIT’s Foreign Investment Trophy, emerging victorious from a pool of 5 nominees after 3 rounds of voting—by a professional jury, the public and the audience.
Minister-President of Flanders Geert Bourgeois presented the Foreign Investment of the Year Trophy 2018 to Jean Vandael, plant general manager, and Katsutoshi Shichijo, president of Kaneka Belgium. The Japanese specialty chemicals firm was recognized for the recent expansion of its MS Polymer production facility in Westerlo.
“Kaneka’s investment highlights Flanders’ strategic location and other strengths such as interesting tax incentives and a top-class, multilingual workforce,” the Minister-President commented.
Proud to win the trophy
“For a B2B company like ours, the Foreign Investment Trophy is a unique opportunity to enhance our Kaneka brand awareness toward a broader audience. It is an incentive for us to go further on our chosen path, to explore new opportunities and to anchor the company even more deeply in the Kempen region of Flanders, relying on the professional knowledge and skills of our employees. Therefore, we are very proud!”, says plant general manager Jean Vandael.
“We are grateful to Flanders Investment & Trade for this initiative and this award, and we herewith would like to thank all the people who voted for Kaneka!”
“Winning this award it is a great honor and recognition for our decades-long and relentless dedication behind the spotlights, our creativity and commitment to the environment and the future of our society”, adds Katsutoshi Shichijo, president Kaneka Belgium.
Foreign Investment Trophy
For the sixth time in a row, Flanders Investment & Trade (FIT) hosted the Foreign Investment Trophy on February 27th, 2018. The Deloitte Gateway Office at Brussels Airport provided a perfect setting for this international investment competition, which recognizes some of the most remarkable investments made by foreign firms in Flanders, the northern region of Belgium.
Kaneka’s last year’s investment in a new and third cutting-edge MS Polymer production line at its facility in Westerlo resulted in this prestigious award. When completed at the end of 2018, the upgraded Flanders-based MS Polymer production plant will be Kaneka’s largest in the world.
The other nominees for the Foreign Investment of the Year Trophy 2018 were: Boortmalt and French parent company Axereal, South Korean Hyundai Construction Equipment, Swiss pharma firm Novartis and South African paper and pulp producer Sappi.
More info about FIT can be found here:
About Kaneka Belgium and Kaneka Corporation
Founded in 1970, Kaneka Belgium was the first overseas subsidiary of the Japanese technology-driven chemical company Kaneka Corporation. Kaneka Corporation provides diversified products, globally supported by a worldwide manufacturing and marketing organization. Its business activities span a broad spectrum of markets, ranging from chemicals, food products, synthetic fibers, and life sciences to electrical and electronic materials. Today, Kaneka Corporation operates in almost twenty countries spread across the world and is a major global player in the field of macromolecular and fermentation technology. It offers innovative solutions in four strategic domains: materials, quality of life, healthcare and nutrition. Worldwide, Kaneka employs 9,500 people. To strengthen its governance systems, Kaneka has three regional holding companies in Asia, the Americas, and Europe.
Traditionally Kaneka Belgium has been active in the field of functional and foamed plastics, where it produces intermediate ‘specialty chemicals’ for a wide range of applications in construction, transportation, and packaging industries. Headquarters and plant are located in Westerlo, Belgium where three production sites are operational for impact modifiers (Kane Ace™), liquid polymers (Kaneka MS Polymer™) and lightweight expandable particle foams (Eperan™ and Eperan™-PP). Kaneka Belgium employs 311 people and maintains a steady turnover growth.
Since 2015, Kaneka Belgium is structured under the holding company Kaneka Europe Holding Company NV. This holding includes other Belgian firms Kaneka Pharma Europe NV (medical devices and functional food ingredients) and Kaneka Eurogentec S.A. (high-quality products for life sciences, biotechnology, diagnostics and pharmacy).