Expatica news

Belgians take over foreign businesses

14 May 2007

BRUSSELS – A small group of large companies like brewery InBev undertook a number of large takeovers and managed to tip the balance of Belgian-foreign takeovers over the past three years.

In total Belgian companies took over foreign companies worth EUR 31 billion, while foreign companies took over Belgian businesses worth EUR 18 billion.

The Belgian businesses managed to secure a more solid position on the international scene, in contrast to the Dutch, who saw more Dutch businesses fall into foreign hands than vice versa.

The positive balance for Belgium was mainly thanks to a select group of large stock-market listed companies, according to a study by the Bureau van Dijk Electronic Publishing (BvDEP).

“A small group of large companies undertook a number of very big takeovers and tipped the balance,” says Christophe Van de Walle of BvDEP. “Brewery InBev and pharmaceutical company UCB were the most important. And after them, the large Belgian banking groups KBC, Fortis and Dexia and the holdings of Albert Frère.”

Van de Walle: “The mergers and takeovers show that globalisation is in full swing, even in Belgium. The principle is the same everywhere: the big companies buy over the small ones. The nationality of takeover candidates plays little role, if any.”

[Copyright Expatica News 2007]

Subject: Belgian news