U.S.-based medical product company, Hollister, launched its European distribution center in Etten-Leur, North Brabant in 2008 and now serves more than 90 countries worldwide.
During the location search process, many potential sites in the Netherlands, Belgium and northwest France were considered, but Brabant emerged as the winner. “We quickly discovered that Brabant is a logistical dream,” explained Hugh Berry, Hollister’s Logistics Services Manager for Europe. “The location between the major ports of Rotterdam and Antwerp is ideal. We have two international airports within close proximity, in Schiphol and Brussels, and we are relatively close to England, France and Germany, where our main clients are established.”
Labor costs, work ethics, workforce flexibility and building costs further strengthened Brabant’s position, not to mention the high degree of proficient English spoken in the Netherlands. With these factors in mind, Berry said: “the locations in other countries disappeared from Hollister’s radar.”
The company originally invested approximately €15 million in the European distribution center, which has since delivered long-term cost savings. “After 5 years in Etten-Leur, we can say the choice of Brabant was the right one,” said Berry.
The support and services that Hollister received from the NFIA, BOM Foreign Investments and other regional development and government organizations bodies have contributed to this long-term success. “You would not believe the amount of knowledge that BOM has and the networks that they have access to. They supervised the entire organization of the construction. The municipal government was also extremely cooperative regarding the land transaction and the permits. They all did an excellent job.”