About us

From small family business to integrated group counting 8 construction companies.

Introduction

Democo Group is a cluster of 7 vertically integrated companies with all the necessary knowledge and expertise on board to develop, build, finish and maintain building projects from A to Z. In 40 years’ time we have developed ourselves into a genuine reference in the Belgian market.

Democo Group originated from contracting company Democo, which expanded as technical companies as well as finishing and development businesses started to join the family. For our clients, this means that we are able to offer the complete range of services required to tackle their construction projects from start to finish. We focus on larger, more complex construction ventures across all sectors.

For our companies, the presence of the group context means that they can focus 100% on their field of expertise, within the safety of a framework that offers support, reliability and economies of scale. Centralised services strengthen their operational capabilities and they benefit from the synergy between them and their fellow enterprises. The sister companies’ collaboration goes far beyond a traditional contractor-subcontractor relationship: our businesses actively work together from the get-go, and therefore fully grasp how they can best complement each other, without losing valuable information or time.

 

Founder Cyriel Demot

Cyriel Demot was 56 when, in 1977, he was dismissed from his role as CEO at a construction company following a dispute around the correct payment of its labourers. All 800 workers, most of whom Cyriel knew by name, stood by his side and spontaneously put down their tools – to no avail.

As a father to 3 young children, Cyriel did not lose courage: he sold off his apartment by the seaside for seed capital and together with Frans Houben and Mario Longhi started his own construction company: Democo. Cyriel’s loyalty, integrity and respect for customers and workers paid off: no more than a year later, the company had a headcount of 80 employees and a considerable number of former clients had followed. In the next years, Democo continued to show rapid growth: Cyriel was a strong believer in vertical integration and was keen to work as one company as much as possible. Thanks to this approach, many construction partners became colleagues and the company gathered further expertise in the areas of finishing, technical services and project development.

Today, Cyriel’s sons Philip and Michel Demot are at the helm of the Democo Group family business – while a few grandchildren are hard at work in the company as well. Houben’s sons and grandsons, too, are still active in the business.

 

People & planet

At Democo Group, we’re building for the future of people and environment. We are aware of the great responsibility this entails and continuously invest in the growth of our employees, our techniques and our processes.

We move and evolve with the world in which we build, looking for sustainable added value in our projects – for today and tomorrow. We build and work ethically and with respect for each other, our customers, our society and our planet. Integrity and humanity are always our first priority.

With a clear strategy for sustainability, we continue to challenge ourselves and our techniques, focusing on the well-being of society and the environment, progressive personnel policies and integrity of management.

 

Engagement

Our driving force is a strong team of committed employees, working everyday with passion and dedication on valuable projects in which they fully believe.

This commitment also extends beyond their job: our people put their weight behind various social, cultural and sporting projects. Our Democo Group colleagues work together to create added value for people and society.

We proudly encourage that commitment and want to support even more initiatives from within. By sponsoring time, effort or resources, we can make a difference for quite a few wonderful projects. Through long-term collaborations, we contribute and improve upon today and tomorrow!

 

1945

Daeninck & Deweerdt is founded as a specialist in heating installations for private homes.

1977

At the age of 56, Cyriel Demot together with Frans Houben and Mario Longhi starts his own construction company.

“Democo Algemene Ondernemingen” is born, setting in motion a distinct and integrated vision on real estate.

1982

Acquisition Vandenbriele

The acquisition of sanitation expert Vandenbriele is the first step towards what will become the future Democo Group: the ambition to deliver better, faster and more efficient work for end customers through vertical integration has been kickstarted.

1985

Founding of AEW

Eddy Noben founds ‘Algemene Electriciteitswerken’ (AEW – General Electricity Works). Under his leadership, we are able to grow into a group of around 150 employees and three companies.

1986

Founding of Deholi & Deconstruct

Democo builds centralised workshops on the Centrum Zuid industrial estate in Houthalen.

1994

Founding of Democo Poland

1997

Second generation at the helm

2000

Construction new offices Democo Poland

Founding of DMI Vastgoed, predecessor to Ciril

As a construction company, Democo comes across a great many opportunities within the real estate sector and develops a strong network of partners. To be able to further expand on this, DMI Vastgoed is established as a real estate company and project developer. From the get-go, DMI Vastgoed actively focuses on inner city developments with significant attention to the surrounding areas and the people who live there.

2002

Founding of Democo Group holding and buyout Mario Longhi

2008

Acquisition AEW

Opening branches in Antwerp & Brussels

AEW is taken in under the umbrella of Democo Group. The group provides continuity and growth for AEW.

2013

Founding of Demtec Services & AEW Security

Demtec services is established as the reference for technical maintenance. Today, thanks to its shared knowledge as a subsidiary within Democo Group, Demtec is an ideal partner from the first stages in construction to the final maintenance phase.

AEW Security is a partner for safeguarding professional environments thanks to its bespoke offer of monitoring and security systems.

2016

Acquisition Daeninck & Deweerdt

Daeninck & Deweerdt becomes a granddaughter of Democo, through technical specialist Vandenbriele. Through this acquisition, Daeninck & Deweerdt becomes part of a group with a strong presence across Flanders.

2018

Founding of regional office East-Flanders in Ghent

2019

Democo Group introduces a new and uniform corporate identity across all its companies, with a fresh logo.

We are stronger together, joint as a group of companies. Thanks to our new corporate identity, the sense of unity we achieve internally through our collaboration and management, now shines through to the outside world as well. We all sail under the same flag.

DMI Vastgoed becomes Ciril

The name emphasises what we do: we develop the city real estate of tomorrow - while keeping in mind our experience and history, starting with our founder Cyriel Demot. Ciril is responsible for project development within Democo Group - a highly complex subject matter that requires many stakeholders to work together – and aims to make its results accessible to everyone. Ciril thinks about the future of real estate and our cities, together with partners, governments and clients – with an open mind and while putting people first.

City Real Estate for Real people

2020

Great Place to Work

All Democo Group companies get certified as Great Place to Work: a great reward for the efforts of our employees who make our group a pleasant, close-knit and strong workplace to be proud of.

2021

Vandenbriele team grows bigger

Vandenbriele acquires sister company Daeninck & Deweerdt, combining their expertise in comfort systems. By joining forces and forming one specialist in water, climate and energy systems, the company is ready to build value even more efficiently.

Democo Group is nominated as one of the "Best Workplaces Belgium".

 

 

History

1945

Daeninck & Deweerdt is founded as a specialist in heating installations for private homes.

1977

At the age of 56, Cyriel Demot together with Frans Houben and Mario Longhi starts his own construction company.

“Democo Algemene Ondernemingen” is born, setting in motion a distinct and integrated vision on real estate.

1982

Acquisition Vandenbriele

The acquisition of sanitation expert Vandenbriele is the first step towards what will become the future Democo Group: the ambition to deliver better, faster and more efficient work for end customers through vertical integration has been kickstarted.

1985

Founding of AEW

Eddy Noben founds ‘Algemene Electriciteitswerken’ (AEW – General Electricity Works). Under his leadership, we are able to grow into a group of around 150 employees and three companies.

1986

Founding of Deholi & Deconstruct

Democo builds centralised workshops on the Centrum Zuid industrial estate in Houthalen.

1994

Founding of Democo Poland

1997

Second generation at the helm

2000

Construction new offices Democo Poland

Founding of DMI Vastgoed, predecessor to Ciril

As a construction company, Democo comes across a great many opportunities within the real estate sector and develops a strong network of partners. To be able to further expand on this, DMI Vastgoed is established as a real estate company and project developer. From the get-go, DMI Vastgoed actively focuses on inner city developments with significant attention to the surrounding areas and the people who live there.

2002

Founding of Democo Group holding and buyout Mario Longhi

2008

Acquisition AEW

Opening branches in Antwerp & Brussels

AEW is taken in under the umbrella of Democo Group. The group provides continuity and growth for AEW.

2013

Founding of Demtec Services & AEW Security

Demtec services is established as the reference for technical maintenance. Today, thanks to its shared knowledge as a subsidiary within Democo Group, Demtec is an ideal partner from the first stages in construction to the final maintenance phase.

AEW Security is a partner for safeguarding professional environments thanks to its bespoke offer of monitoring and security systems.

2016

Acquisition Daeninck & Deweerdt

Daeninck & Deweerdt becomes a granddaughter of Democo, through technical specialist Vandenbriele. Through this acquisition, Daeninck & Deweerdt becomes part of a group with a strong presence across Flanders.

2018

Founding of regional office East-Flanders in Ghent

2019

Democo Group introduces a new and uniform corporate identity across all its companies, with a fresh logo.

We are stronger together, joint as a group of companies. Thanks to our new corporate identity, the sense of unity we achieve internally through our collaboration and management, now shines through to the outside world as well. We all sail under the same flag.

DMI Vastgoed becomes Ciril

The name emphasises what we do: we develop the city real estate of tomorrow - while keeping in mind our experience and history, starting with our founder Cyriel Demot. Ciril is responsible for project development within Democo Group - a highly complex subject matter that requires many stakeholders to work together – and aims to make its results accessible to everyone. Ciril thinks about the future of real estate and our cities, together with partners, governments and clients – with an open mind and while putting people first.

City Real Estate for Real people

2020

Great Place to Work

All Democo Group companies get certified as Great Place to Work: a great reward for the efforts of our employees who make our group a pleasant, close-knit and strong workplace to be proud of.

2021

Vandenbriele team grows bigger

Vandenbriele acquires sister company Daeninck & Deweerdt, combining their expertise in comfort systems. By joining forces and forming one specialist in water, climate and energy systems, the company is ready to build value even more efficiently.

Democo Group is nominated as one of the "Best Workplaces Belgium".