Azelis CEO interview with ICIS

11 June 2010

Striving for excellence, Joris Coppye outlines a period of internal corporate restructuring within Azelis to position it for growth and operational supremacy.
PAN-EUROPEAN specialty chemical distributor Azelis has undergone a corporate transformation. At a time when many companies were focused on fighting for survival, Azelis took the opportunity during 2009 to develop a focused and streamlined structure, making several key management changes and appointments along the way.

The first major change was a new man at the top, namely Joris Coppye, previously operations director at Azelis, who took over as CEO last July. His predecessor, Hans Udo Wenzel, remains available as a nonexecutive board member and deputy chairman.

In 2008, the company launched a three-year business plan for the period 2009-2011 based on two pillars: organic growth and realizing internal synergies, and further acquisitions. Coppye says: "We realized that to achieve this business plan and future growth we needed to restructure and have critical mass. We did not have a corporate center and we had a management team very much dispersed across different European countries."

Its decentralized approach, which was what made Azelis unique in Wenzel's early years as CEO, had become suboptimal, and needed changing to deal with the 30 or more acquisitions made since Azelis was established in 2001.... Read the full interview