Heidelberg has announced that it is strengthening the sites for its Gallus narrow web flexo division, though strangely the first move involves selling off its main St Gallen headquarters in Switzerland.
The 20,000 sqm St Gallen production site is being sold to local entrepreneurs Marcel and Roger Baumer for an undisclosed sum. Heidelberg will sign a long term lease agreement that will see Gallus continue to use the site as the main tenant though the company has not said how large an area within the site it will be using. Roger Baumer explained, “The Gallus area is set to develop into an open campus for companies and institutions that are helping to shape the future and strengthen St. Gallen as a workplace. We are delighted that the Gallus Group, with its headquarters and Digital Campus, is the anchor tenant of the site.”
Roughly 160 people work at the St Gallen facility, including business and R&D management as well as finance, sales, service, marketing and purchasing. Heidelberg is planning to open a new customer demonstration centre, called the Gallus Experience Center, at the end of the year. In addition, Gallus is also planning to expand its digital printing portfolio.
Dr. Ludwin Monz, who took over as CEO of Heidelberg at the beginning of this month, added, “The reorientation of our site in St. Gallen into a competence centre for digital label printing underlines the high strategic importance for Heidelberg in the packaging sector. We welcome, that the commitment of entrepreneurs Marcel and Roger Baumer will create an innovative environment in St Gallen from which we can also benefit.”
It’s worth noting that Heidelberg announced in 2020 that it would sell off Gallus to a Swiss company, Benpac though that sale fell through at the end of January 2021. Clearly Heidelberg still needed to raise money from Gallus and it was unlikely that it would simply put the company back on the market after that botched effort last year. So selling the land for redevelopment makes perfect sense and fits in with Heidelberg’s approach to selling off its large real estate portfolio, including the iconic Print Media Academy building in the centre of the city of Heidelberg, as well as part of its own Wiesloch/Walldorf production site in Germany.
You can find further details on the Gallus portfolio from heidelberg.com and gallus-group.com.
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