History of NRB

Midway through the 1980s, a few local organisations decided to come together and create an entity to “share” their IT activities. GI (Groupement Informatique) was born accordingly in 1986 under the auspices of SMAP (now insurance company Ethias) and three public utility companies in the area of Liège: Local water operator CILE, ALG and ALE, the latter two of which have become part of energy and telecommunications group Nethys.

In 1987, NRB S.A. was founded by the four shareholders plus CCB (Crédit Communal de Belgique), telecom operator Coditel and Electrabel. Their aim: reducing the increasing costs of IT and centralising the competences of their workforces within the new company. In the beginning, NRB only provided services to its own shareholders.

GIEI (Groupement d’Intérêt Economique et Informatique) was founded in 1989 and entrusted NRB with the IT management of the French Community of Belgium and of the Walloon Region (now the Federation of Wallonia-Brussels).

As of 1995 NRB’s infrastructure in Herstal was modernised and optimized in terms of security. A major extension of the site was realized in 1997. 

NRB extended its services to parastatal organisations and private companies in 2005. 

Its new premises, again in Herstal, were built in 2007, and a third data centre opened in 2010.

That same year, NRB acquired the 51% shares owned by Dexia bank (now Belfius) in the holding ADINFO, which covers three IT companies active in the public sector: Cevi in Ghent, Adehis in Namur and Logins in Mechelen.

In 2011, NRB put in place a new disaster recovery centre thanks to its partnership with WDC (Wallonia Data Center) based in Villers-le-Bouillet. This finally enables NRB to offer its clients a complete DR solution, with data centres more than 30 km apart geographically, which complies with even the strictest requirements in terms of business continuity.

In the same year Xperthis is being established by NRB, bringing together Polymedis in Mons, Partezis in Heverlee (Leuven) and Xtenso in Mechelen. Xperthis is now the new leader in IT for the healthcare sector in Belgium, in which NRB holds a 55% stake.

Also in 2011, NRB becomes the first and only Belgian company to be certified as SAP Hosting Partner, allowing it to offer services on demand for SAP environments. This recognition opens the way for new opportunities in the domain of specialised SAP hosting and cloud computing. 

In 2012, Guy Uerlings, general manager of NRB since its creation, passes the baton to Ulrich Penzkofer. 

Stesud, a company specialised in solutions for the local government sector, joins the NRB Group in 2013. This company was acquired by Adinfo to merge with Adehis under to become ‘Civadis’.

At the same time, NRB fully commits to its role as economic driver by investing in Afelio, a start-up from Liège, which designs and develops professional user-focused mobile and web applications.

In 2014 and 2015, NRB acquires MIMS and CIGES, both companies specialised in ICT-solutions for the health care sector. MIMS and CIGES are to be integrated within Xperthis.

Still in 2015, NRB acquires 100 % of the share capital of Trasys Group. The operations of Trasys are fully integrated into NRB in 2016.

October 1st 2016, Pascal Laffineur succeeds Ulrich Penzkofer, as CEO of the NRB Group. Pascal Laffineur, 51, civil engineer (UCL) and holder of a Degree in Business Administration, held various positions, both in Belgium and abroad in the ICT sector before joining NRB.

In December 2016, NRB decides to sell its print shop operations to the IPEX Group, a specialised company with printing as its core business.

As per 1 January 2017, Trasys nv, Trasys Group nv and Trasys Technology nv cease to exist from a legal point of view as they are merged and absorbed into NRB nv. Trasys Luxemburg PSF remains unchanged and becomes an affiliate of NRB nv.

Trasys Group's former activities relating to European and international organisations are combined into a European Economic Interest Grouping (EEIG) named ‘Trasys International’.

March 2017 heralds the start of the construction works for a new data centre in Villers-le-Bouillet. This data centre is part of the company BelgiumDC, a cooperation between NRB nv and the ETIX Group, which specialises in building ICT infrastructure. The new data centre goes live in the course of the final quarter of 2017.

January 2018, NRB, signs a major agreement with IBM, to offer its customers IBM’s most advanced technologies for highly automated and intelligent hybrid cloud services

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