St-Luc acquires Dutch printing company Pharmalabel


St-Luc from Nazareth (Belgium) now also active in the pharmaceutical market.

The printing group St-Luc Labels & Packaging, headquartered in Nazareth, has taken over its Dutch sector colleague Pharmalabel. Pharmalabel is a packaging printing company specialized in labels for the pharmaceutical sector. For St-Luc it is an expansion to a new market in which it was not yet active. After the acquisition, the group has a turnover of 53 million euros and 280 employees.

Pharmalabel was founded in 1965 and produces self-adhesive labels and booklet labels for the pharmaceutical and chemical industry. From hospitals to laboratories. In addition, it also prints aluminum and PP-blister film for these sectors and has developed a series of products specifically for sterilization processes and sterile environments. Major players such as Air Liquide, Bayer, Baxter, GSK, Monsanto and Novartis can count on its supplier Pharmalabel.

At the end of 2017, the conversation started between Pharmalabel and St-Luc Labels & Packaging. Fanny Dhondt, managing director St-Luc: "Pharmalabel is a family business where there was no family succession. It immediately clicked between us, because we are also a 100% family business. For the management of Pharmalabel this family security and care for the employees was an absolute condition. For us, Pharmalabel was a great opportunity to build a solid foundation in the pharmaceutical industry, a new and strongly growing market segment."


Four branches, three countries

With the takeover, the St-Luc group now has four branches in three countries: St-Luc Labels & Packaging (labels, shrink sleeves and flexible packaging) in Belgium, the French Microbox (folding carton) and in the Netherlands Altrif (labels and booklets) and Pharmalabel (pharmaceutical packaging).

"We strongly believe in the growth potential of packaging of high quality. That is why we have invested heavily in recent years, both in new digital printing presses and skilled people, but also in takeovers", says CEO Jerome Dhondt. "After Altrif in 2016, we can now add another great company to our group. Pharmalabel is an established value and with its experience in export to 30 countries, it is also the most international company in our group."



Further growth, both organically and through consolidation

The group now has 280 employees, who together achieve a turnover of 53 million euros. The ambition is to continue this growth path. Niko Dhondt: "Thanks to our continuous pursuit of innovation and quality, we have continued to grow organically, but acquisitions provide a dynamic boost in growth. We are very ambitious with Pharmalabel! There is enormous growth potential and we can now also offer our other products such as shrink sleeves, cardboard boxes and digitally printed flexible packaging to the pharmaceutical market. In addition, we realize that the packaging world will see further consolidation in the future. We want to be at the head of the pack. "

After the acquisition, the management team that observes the daily management at Pharmalabel remains on board. Gert Dietvorst, operations manager at Pharmalabel: "What is great is that many employees have been working for Pharmalabel for more than 30 years. That says a lot about the company and the team. "

St-Luc wants to strengthen the sales department of Pharmalabel first. "After the acquisition of Altrif, we had already strengthened our commercial team in the Netherlands and we will now also do this at Pharmalabel. Because growth is what we believe in for a 100%! And for that we also need new, enthusiastic employees", concludes Niko Dhondt.