After having celebrated its first anniversary on the 25th of May 2022, Flanders Metals Valley (FMV) takes the next big step forward. FMV’s activities have now grown to such an extent that a full-time coordinator is needed. In order to support this growth, Mr. Kristof Nelis has been appointed on 08/08/2022 as the new coordinator of Flanders Metals Valley. The current coordinators, Bart Blanpain and Mathias Chintinne will remain active in FMV as members of the start-up team.

Bart Blanpain, professor in Materials Engineering at the KU Leuven, confirms this positive evolution: “Flanders Metals Valley was founded in May 2021 as a bottom-up initiative to group companies, research institutes and other organisations active in the broad sector of metals. The goal is to actively work together on achieving a climate neutral and fully circular metal industry. I was happy to see that during the first year 32 members joined FMV! Using their input, 8 events have already been realized, going from online webinars to networking seminars & relevant presentations organized onsite at several of our member companies. The time has now come to expand the team with Kristof as our full-time coordinator. He will become the face and the first point of contact of the organisation.”

Mathias Chintinne, senior R&D manager at Aurubis Beerse, adds: “I’m happy we have concluded our search and we can now welcome Kristof as the new coordinator of Flanders Metals Valley. It has been thrilling to see the enthusiasm of the community grow as the start-up team launched all these initiatives. We are convinced Kristof will give FMV an even bigger boost.”

Flanders Metals Valley is a bottom-up initiative so the start-up team will continue to play their role in terms of where the organization places its focus. Kristof will be the contact person for all parties involved: the press, existing & potential members and all circular economy enthusiasts. His roots lie in the organisation/representation sector as he has worked several years for the Messe Frankfurt and was involved with the organisation of technical trade shows.

Kristof is full of energy and ready to take on this exciting challenge: “While talking to several members it became clear to me that Flanders Metals Valley is composed of companies and institutions who like getting things done and are eager to tackle today’s challenges by bringing people together and jointly exploring new cooperations. The start-up team has done a fantastic job by organizing all events and I’m happy to announce that for 2022 it’s not over yet, with at least 2 more events in the pipeline: an FMV-seminar around sorting – sampling – characterization at Veolia and a Flanders Metals Day at Aluminium Duffel.

Next to streamlining these events, a personal visit to all the members is on top of my priority list. Thus, getting a clear overview of the members’ activities, plans, wishes and suggestions. My goal as a coordinator is to reinforce FMV’s networking role and to help create a larger and effective network for small, medium and large companies and institutions active in the metallurgical, recycling or sorting sector. Companies sometimes go looking for solutions abroad while the answer is just around the corner. Flanders Metals Valley aims to be the local guide in this search.

Other key points for me will be to further develop our ways of communication. Our current website will be renewed and a newsletter with news relevant for our members will be created around our working groups “Research & Innovation”, “Image to society” and “Education & Training”.

I am looking forward to meeting everybody in person as soon as possible and am available via kristof.nelis@flandersmetalsvalley.be or +32 (0)484 63 00 20.”