De La Rue opens new €27m Maltese facility

De La Rue has opened a new €27m product authentication facility in Malta, marking the culmination of a project which got underway two years ago.

The new facility will produce tax stamps, authentication and brand protection products, including brand protection labels for Microsoft, one the world’s most famous brands. De La Rue employs 567 at its site in Malta across its three core business areas of currency, identity and brand protection.

The company has been investing in its brand protection business of late, closing a $25m acquisition of DuPont Authentication last year to bolster its position in photopolymer holographic films and 3D holograms.

It has longstanding ties to Malta, which accounts for a sizeable proportion of its 3,000-plus employees in 24 sites around the world, and also the Malta College of Arts, Science and Technology (MCAST), collaborating on training programmes in printing and security printing.

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Prime Minister Joseph Muscat opened the new facility, with Economy Minister Chris Cardona, De La Rue’s chief operating officer Bryan Gray and De La Rue Malta director Edward Chetcuti in attendance.

The opening of the facility is a boost to the Maltese operation, coming amid local anxiety over the loss of the contract to print UK passport books earlier this year after the current deal expires in 2019. Some of the blank passport books were being printed at the Maltese unit as a fall-back supply for De La Rue’s main facility in Gateshead, although the bulk of its book output goes to other countries around the world.

De La Rue considered appealing the award of the contract to rival Gemalto, but subsequently decided against that course of action.

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