Willemen Groep wins ‘Company of the Year’ award

Willemen Groep – active internationally in the construction industry as contractor, supplier and project developer – has been named ‘Company of the Year 2013’. This award is an initiative of EY in collaboration with De Tijd and BNP Paribas Fortis. Willemen Groep was chosen over other nominees Caviar Group, Cegeka Group and Noordzee Helikopters Vlaanderen. Herman Van Rompuy, President of the European Council, presented the award to the company, which employs more than 1,800 people and recorded a turnover of €600 million in 2012.

For seven years now, Willemen Groep has been a member of iGMO (the Growth Management for Medium-sized Companies Impulse Centre at Vlerick Business School), which is a platform for research, dialogue and networking. Professor Hans Crijns, Director iGMO: "Without any doubt, Willemen Group deserves this prize. The company demonstrates beautifully how a father and son family firm can grow through entrepreneurial skill in difficult times and can be innovative in a so-called traditional sector. They make sustainability concrete, socially and ecologically as well as economically, because they truly believe that this enables them to prepare for the future."

An award for successful Belgian companies

EY launched the ‘Company of the Year’ award in 1995 to recognise successful Belgian companies for their outstanding achievements. The award spotlights both large companies and smaller family businesses that stand out for their growth and flair for innovation, entrepreneurship, strategy, persistence and sound management.

Rudi Braes, Managing Partner EY Belgium: “The purpose of this initiative is not only to reward companies whose entrepreneurship yields good results. These companies also display a bold vision, internationalisation, capable management, innovative entrepreneurship and the drive to grow further. Willemen Groep has demonstrated that – even in the current difficult economic conditions – they are a top company in Flanders.

Chairman of the jury, Baron Paul Buysse, explains why Willemen Groep was selected: “Willemen Groep was chosen because of the continuity of a successful family business that works according to all of the Corporate Governance criteria, and also for the balanced dynamic of the company, which, in addition to being successful in its core activities, also develops other profitable and sustainable projects and turns them into successes. This enables the company to broaden its horizons and thus create the optimal conditions for sustainable, profitable growth in the short-term as well as the medium-term. We were also impressed by the great care and expertise that they display in preparing for succession.


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