A big deal for Cartamundi


The Belgian playing card manufacturer Cartamundi is to become the world's biggest game manufacturer thanks to an ambitious takeover. Cartamundi is buying two factories from the American toy giant Hasbro, home to Monopoly.

On 14 July Hasbro and Cartamundi signed an agreement in principle for the sale of the Hasbro factories in East Longmeadow, Massachusetts (USA), and Waterford (Ireland). With the takeover of these two factories the number of people employed by Cartamundi grows from 1,600 to more than 2,100. The growth in turnover is even more spectacular, with an additional 70 percent. In 2014 Cartamundi had a turnover of 199 million euros. Together the two Hasbro factories reached a turnover of around 140 million euros in that same year. With this expansion in their production capacity Cartamundi will become the leading manufacturer of playing cards, cards for games and board games.

Over the last few years this Turnhout-based playing card company has been continually on the lookout for new takeovers, at a rate of around one company per year. Chris Van Doorslaer, CEO at Cartamundi, describes their latest purchase as a milestone and a big challenge. Indeed it opens the door for the first time to expand our operations. Cartamundi was already involved in the production of board games, but on a limited scale. With the two Hasbro factories on board the production capacity increases from 2 million units per year to 45 million units. Nonetheless Van Doorslaer sees considerable logic in taking over the board game factories. The Belgian company has many board game clients who are also interested in playing cards. Following the takeover Cartamundi can now provide them with a handy one-stop shop.

Moreover, the deal with Hasbro gives Van Doorslaer time to attract new customers. Cartamundi has signed a five-year production contract with the American toy giant. The two factories will therefore continue to produce board games for Hasbro. These include some classic names such as Cluedo, Trivial Pursuit and Monopoly. In return Cartamundi has guaranteed to retain jobs for production and logistics staff at both sites. East Longmeadow is the largest with 350 staff, Waterford has 160 employees.

Cartamundi was founded in 1970 and has nearly 250 years of experience to its name in the production and sale of playing cards and card games. Cartamundi's head office is in Turnhout, Belgium. In 2014 the group achieved a turnover of 199 million euros with 1,450 employees and sites in Belgium, France, Germany, the United Kingdom, Poland, the United States, Brazil, Mexico, India and Japan, and 14 sales offices worldwide. Cartamundi has its own retail collection with cards under license (such as Disney®, James Bond®, Hasbro® etc. ), but is also well known for its promotional card collection, casino cards, collector's cards (e.g. Magic: the Gathering!® , Yu-Gi -Oh!®) and card games (such as Uno®, Monopoly®) or the new iCards.) These cards create the link between physical cards and the virtual world of the internet, smartphones, game consoles etc. Cartamundi's mission is ‘Sharing The Magic Of Playing Together’.