Creaplan & For Live establish base for European live experience group
Stand and interior building company Creaplan from Nazareth, Belgium and the Dutch For Live from Amersfoort, specialist in live communication projects, join forces. The transaction is part of the international growth strategy of both companies and rings in the beginning of an international group concept.
The group will focus on the full range of expertise within brand communication, from live events and stands to corporate interiors and experience centres, each with a strong online offering.
Match in offer and DNA
For Creaplan CEO Michael Debaveye, the match between both companies became clear early on. “Where we provide stands, interiors and displays, our customers will now be able to rely on the expertise of For Live for all their needs concerning event interiors, audiovisual applications and online broadcasting. Both companies are very complementary. We’ll also reinforce each other geographically: Creaplan strengthens its position in the Dutch market, For Live introduces itself in Belgium.” Both businesses present themselves as premium players with quality firmly rooted in their DNA.
From Eurovision Song Contest to World Cup ice skating
For Live supplies facility solutions — audio, light, rigging and more — for live communication projects. The company from Amersfoort targets production houses, event agencies and inhouse event departments, with a strong focus on the corporate and sport events market. For Live was founded about 10 years ago and has been involved in over 1,000 productions, from the Eurovision Song Contest to the World Cup ice skating in Thialf, as well as in numerous corporate internal events such as shareholder meetings and product presentations for companies like KPN, Amstel, Rabobank, KLM and more.
Ready for the future thanks to integration of technology
Vincent Lievens, COO at Creaplan, explains. “The cooperation makes our offering even more future-proof. As a company, we did not sit on our hands during the coronavirus crisis: our interior solutions and complete furnishings branch has grown massively, at the same time we evaluated our events product offering to see where we could integrate technology, aiming at online and hybrid applications. Thanks to For Live’s expertise in online events, we can answer the market demand even better, future-proofing our stand and interior offer.”
For Ruud van den Berg, founder of For Live, the cooperation fits seamlessly within the giant growth spurt his company has known the past years. “Despite the COVID-19 crisis, For Live is doing great and orders keep coming in, thanks to the traditional (sport) events that still take place on one hand and the growing demand for online broadcasting solutions on the other hand. At the beginning of the crisis, For Live started developing a range of unique products for interactive online events, with which we have now gained a prominent market position.”
“Thanks to the joining of forces with Creaplan, For Live can professionalise its stand building activities further. Next to that, it is a good introduction to the Belgian market. Just like Creaplan, everything we do revolves around experience and impact.”Ruud van den Berg, For Live
Lievens: “Similar to the acquisition of stand builder Bulik last year, this acquisition feels like the logical next step. For Live reinforces the group concept, in which brand experience is at the centre. Operationally, not much changes: our customers will still receive the same service and our activities in Nazareth will remain unchanged.”
Founder Ruud van den Berg preserves the operational management of For Live; both companies will be managed centrally by the Creaplan management team for optimal collaboration. Ruud will also join the overarching group as shareholder and director.
Solidifying market position with strong group concept
Debaveye: “We keep taking steps in our growth strategy. Our organic growth continues, at the same time we want to strengthen our market position with various acquisitions of complementary companies, both geographically as well as in the field of product and service. Step by step, we want to build towards a full-fledged European group for projects in the live event and brand communication market.”
Creaplan is a Belgian stand and interior building company with an average annual turnover of 10 million euros, founded in 1994 by entrepreneurial duo Dirk Deleu & Ann Vancoillie who established the company as market leader in the sector. This momentum of growth was continued in 2018 with the reinforcement of external shareholders KeBeK Private Equity & Walter Mastelinck, assisted by an experienced management team. With a team of 50 permanent employees and about 80 freelancers, the company from Nazareth designs and builds stands and interiors for SMEs and multinationals all over Europe.
About For Live
For Live supplies complete facility solutions for events. Every year the company finishes more than 250 projects in the corporate and sport events market, at the request of (technical) producers, event agencies and inhouse event departments. The firm from Amersfoort was founded about 10 years ago by owner Ruud van den Berg. With a team of 15 permanent employees and over 150 freelancers, the company achieves an average annual turnover of 5 million euros.
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