“We get the noise out of your company and turn it into a voice.” With this striking imagery, Olivier Janssens perfectly articulates the vision and mission of sheltered workshop Arop. While companies can continue to focus on their regular production, Arop mainly comes into the picture when these companies want to have batches (re) pack or label goods, organize temporary promotions, build displays,… “With competent employees, modern production lines and machines and automated administrative processing allow us to enter the market competitively. One of our customers has recently even been able to retrieve its production from the Czech Republic because the collaboration with Arop resulted in a lower total cost of ownership, ”says Olivier Janssens.
Sheltered workshop Arop was founded in 1965 and today has 220 employees with an occupational disability, who are supervised by 35 people. Arop had workshops in Borgerhout, Wommelgem and Wilrijk, and recently consolidated them into one large branch on Dynamicalaan in Wilrijk, in the building where Vandeputte safety clothing was previously located, close to a number of important customers. Arop has 8,500 m² of beautifully renovated workshops, warehouses and offices, including 2,000 m² of refrigerated space for the storage and packaging of food and flowers, for which Arop naturally has the necessary certificates. The production lines are extremely flexible and can be adapted on the spot to the assignments. Olivier Janssens: “We can carry out the assignments in our own production halls, but our teams also work on site if necessary. We take care of the transport of our employees ourselves with perfectly equipped vans.”
Also own production
With the takeover of the company Inatura, Arop now also has its own production line. Inatura is a company that produces cherry stone products that has been in existence for fifteen years and has an important market in various European countries. Lorenz Van Ostade: “We are currently running at full speed. The cherry pit cushions and related products are produced here under one roof and finished in our own sewing workshop. It is a product that is produced with natural products, by people with a work disability, and intended for the well-being of our fellow human beings. If that is not a nice triangle. The cherry stone products are also very suitable as corporate gifts and can also be personalized. ”
In order to be even more competitive on the market, Arop is currently in talks with various sheltered workshops to centralize the overhead structure even more and to achieve larger partnerships, which will enable significant cost savings for the partners to be achieved. (NV)