Data in every sector: practical examples


Whether you’re a beverage company, an engineer, a pharmaceutical manufacturer or a software developer, data is key in every business and will only grow in importance in the future. Meet some of the companies where data plays a central role.

1. Data collection

APF Autoparts, a distributor of car parts, uses data to contact customers about matters like maintenance or repairs. As such, data creates considerable added value for the company. To inform customers properly, it is essential that the collected information is accurate and can be used in the right context. Jürgen Sonck, the founder of APF, says in Orange’s podcast that he expects the importance of data to keep growing: “Data is becoming a very important asset for the future of APF.”

Jean-Louis Verbaert, CEO of V W Automation, a specialist in electrical engineering, also explains that technology to collect accurate data is becoming increasingly important and is therefore being used by more companies. In the podcast with entrepreneurs from Hainaut, he talks about using intelligent applications and the evolution towards industry 4.0. “In fact, every part of the production chain, from the engine to other machine parts, can add intelligence thanks to the Internet of Things,” says Verbaert. 


2. Data transport

At Cofé-ô Services, specialised in the supply of vending machines, data is used to improve the service. All the machines transmit continuous data, enabling the company to respond quickly and provide the right service where necessary. “The speed of data transfer is of particular importance: the sooner defects are reported, the faster we can respond,” says Matthieu Vanden Dael from Cofé-ô Services in the podcast featuring entrepreneurs from Namur.


3. Data management 

Data is also crucial in the development of new medicines. That’s clear in the story of biotech company Galapagos. “We are actually a data company: drug research means collecting and managing a lot of data,” Jan Van Der Schueren tells us in the podcast with entrepreneurs from Antwerp. In addition to managing data, it is important that companies can easily consult this data. Thanks to new technologies, this process will also grow even faster in the future, according to Van Der Schueren.


4. Data analysis

The main reason to start working with data is that it helps you make better decisions. This is also what drives beverage company AsterX to collect and analyse data. In the podcast, they talk about how they are fully committed to data analysis. “We work with data every day, for all kinds of reasons. We try to convert, analyse and implement the numbers.” 


5. Data creation & sharing 

At software company Lansweeper, customer data is the actual business model. After all, that data, which maps out and helps manage customers’ IT assets, is critical to business operations. “We continuously create an overview tailored to our clients. It’s a challenge to make sure that this data can be used as well and as accurately as possible,” says Maarten Saeys from Lansweeper in the podcast.


In our podcast series, we gather experiences, strategies and tips from entrepreneurs who have been awarded Trends Gazelles. Find the full list of these podcasts at

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