Lotus Bakeries

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Lotus Bakeries
Company typePublic
EuronextLOTB
Founded1932, called "Banket- en Peperkoekbakkerij Lotus"
FounderJan, Emiel and Henri Boone
HeadquartersLembeke, Kaprijke, Belgium.
Key people
Jan Boone (CEO)
Websitewww.lotusbakeries.com

Lotus Bakeries NV is a Belgian company active worldwide, best known[citation needed] for its iconic Lotus Biscoff biscuit. Lotus Bakeries, with its main headquarters in Lembeke, Kaprijke, Belgium, has production facilities in Belgium, the Netherlands, France, Sweden, South Africa and the US, and is active in about 70 countries in Europe, America and Asia. Lotus Bakeries employs around 2,700 employees. Its brands include Lotus, Lotus Biscoff, nākd, TREK, BEAR, Kiddylicious, Peter's Yard, Dinosaurus, Peijnenburg, Snelle Jelle and Annas.

Since 1988 the shares of Lotus Bakeries are listed on Euronext Brussels. Most are owned by the Boone and Stevens families. Jan Boone, grandson of founder Jan Boone Sr., has been the CEO since 2011.[1]

History[edit]

The company was founded in Lembeke in 1932 by the brothers Jan, Emiel and Henri Boone. Jan named it Lotus, after the flower that symbolises purity.

In the 1950s, the brothers began to package the Lotus Speculoos biscuits individually, and from 1956 they were offered in Belgian catering establishments alongside coffee. Soon after, in 1960, Lotus Speculoos was distributed in neighbouring countries.

Partnering with the Stevens family in 1974, Lotus merged with Corona and now also includes cakes and pastry within its product range. Prepackaged pastries experienced rapid growth at that time.

The Speculoos biscuit is branded Lotus Biscoff, a brand name launched since 1986 and gradually introduced in all countries. In the mid-1980s, several airlines began serving Lotus Biscoff as an in-flight treat.[2]

From the 1990s, Lotus Bakeries grew steadily with a series of integrations:

  • 1999: Integration of Suzywafels
  • 2006: Integration of gingerbread (Peijnenburg)
  • 2008: Integration of ginger cookies (Annas)
  • 2012: Acquisition of Dinosaurus-brand and start of own production from mid-2013 onwards

Since 2015, the company also became active in the natural snacking category with the acquisition of three leading British companies.[3]

  • 2015: strategic partnership with Natural Balance Foods ('NBF') in the healthy snacking segment. NBF is a pioneering British wholefood company which offers bars under the nākd and TREK brands.
  • 2016: acquisition of BEAR, a kids' fruit snacking brand that offers natural snacks made from fruit.
  • 2018: acquisition of Kiddylicious, a British baby snacking brand that creates snacks for growing babies, toddlers and preschoolers.
  • 2020: acquisition of the majority of the remaining shares in British company Natural Balance Foods from the founders. As a result, Lotus Bakeries has full control of the entire Natural Foods portfolio.[4]
  • 2020: creation of a new International HQ for Lotus™ Natural Foods in Switzerland.
  • 2022: acquisition of 100% of the shares of Peter's Yard, a British artisanal sourdough company that produces sourdough crackers, crispbreads and crisps.

In 2019, Lotus Bakeries opened up two new factories:

  • The BEAR factory in Wolseley,[5] South Africa, taking control of the production of the BEAR fruit snacks.
  • Production facility for Lotus Biscoff in Mebane in the state of North Carolina in the United States which marks the first production of Lotus Biscoff outside of Belgium.[6]

In 2022, Lotus Bakeries announced plans to construct a production facility for Lotus Biscoff in Thailand.[7]

Brands and products[edit]

Lotus Speculoos biscuits, also known as Lotus Biscoff biscuits in other countries
Belgian Lotus Biscuits

The company is active worldwide in the indulgent and natural snacking segment with the Lotus, Lotus Biscoff, nākd, TREK, BEAR, Kiddylicious, Peter's Yard, Dinosaurus, Peijnenburg, Snelle Jelle, and Annas brands, among others.

The caramelised biscuit flavour[8] has meanwhile also been incorporated into a spread, ice cream, sandwich biscuits, and chocolate bars and bites.

Organisation[edit]

Karel Boone, the son of founder Jan Boone Sr., became a director in 1966 and was the CEO of Lotus for 32 years from 1974, and the president of the company for 20 years (1966–2012).

In 2006, his brother Matthieu took over as CEO.[9] At the end of 2011, a new generation took over with Jan Boone becoming the CEO.[10]

Executive Committee[edit]

The Executive Committee determines the strategy and objectives of the Lotus Bakeries Group and submits them to the Board of Directors for approval.[11]

  • Jan Boone, CEO
  • Isabelle Maes, CEO Natural Foods
  • Mike Cuvelier, CFO
  • Ignace Heyman, COO
  • William Du Pré, Corporate Director Quality, Procurement and R&D

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Lotus Bakeries". Lotus Bakeries Corporate.
  2. ^ "How Biscoff Cookies Became the Snack We Crave on Planes". Condé Nast Traveler. 23 March 2020.
  3. ^ Lotus koopt Britse koekjesfabrikant - De Standaard - 14 August 2015
  4. ^ "Acquisition of majority of the remaining shares in NBF". De Tijd.
  5. ^ Lotus opent BEAR-fabriek in Zuid-Afrika
  6. ^ Lotus maakt speculoos niet meer alleen in Oost-Vlaanderen, maar ook in Verenigde Staten
  7. ^ "Production facility Thailand". De Tijd. 28 March 2023.
  8. ^ Castle, Stephen (15 February 2011). "A Cookie Paste Squeezed in the Middle of a Debate". The New York Times. Retrieved 12 September 2016.
  9. ^ "Matthieu Boone volgt broer Karel op bij Lotus". Het Nieuwsblad.
  10. ^ "Jan Boone in 2011 nieuwe CEO Lotus". De Tijd.
  11. ^ "Executive Committee". Lotus Bakeries Corporate.