58 years after this Belgian family business, based in Turnhout, was founded by Vic Swerts in 1966, it has developed into an international player and expert in chemical construction specialities. Its key concepts are: hard work, export, innovation and acquisitions.


Review the key events in the history of the Soudal Group in the timeline.

Brief history

Vic Swerts bought a small company in 1966 that specializes in the production of polyester repair paste for damaged car parts. This company was named SOUDAL, which means “Soudeert alles”, dutch for “fixes everything”. The company had a good turnover and the original production site became too small really quickly. After two years the whole production was relocated to the elderly gardening company in Turnhout.

During the next couple of years Soudal started to manufacture silicone sealants and kept growing and the gardening company became small again. In 1976 Soudal was relocated definitely to the industrial parts of Turnhout where production halls were expanded to 11.000m2 in 1985. In 1981 Soudal was incorporated to Soudal N.V. and also started the production of PU foams.

In 1992 the French competitor Ayrton is bought by Soudal, thus increasing the market share in France. A terrible turn in events struck Soudal in 1993, the polyurethane production site was ablaze. One year later, Soudal was fully operational again. The foam production was moved to a new factory in Turnhout, called ‘Plant 2’.

Slowly, Soudal started its first export to a small number of countries. In 1996 Soudal opens a first subsidiary in Eastern Europe (Poland) and buys the department “finalized construction silicone products” from the company Bayer in Leverkusen in 1997. Due to this acquisition, the export department of Soudal reaches new heights and new acquisitions are finalized in Italy, China and Belgium. The company also keeps expanding with the construction of new production halls and the creation of new production lines. With the takeover of Aerotrim (Belgium) and Frencken (Netherlands), Soudal explores new territory. Aerosols, industrial glues and wood maintenance products are added to the already broad portfolio of Soudal.

In 2010 Soudal starts a joint-venture with McCoy Silicone Ltd. In India. Shija, the second biggest PU foam manufacturer in China is acquired. With this move, Soudal is expanding its position in Asia. The worldwide expansion as well as considerable investments Belgium hasn’t gone unnoticed and Soudal is titled “Belgian company of the year” by E&Y in 2011.

The following years, Soudal has opened new subsidiaries and more acquisitions, i.e. in Turkey (Isik 2011), Brazil (2012), Slovenia (TTK, 2013), Poland (Bochem, 2014), Australia (Soudis, 2014) and the USA (Accumetric, 2014). In total, Soudal is present with its own structure in 44 countries including 14 manufacturing locations worldwide. In the past 58 years, Soudal, lead by Vic Swerts, has grown from a small local company to an international multinational corporation.


See also the comprehensive timeline.