Cookie company separates from its boss Phil Rumbol

Again there is a change at the top of the Bahlsen company: the traditional German group is kicking out CEO Rumbol. A successor is still unknown.

The Hanover biscuit manufacturer Bahlsen is separating from his CEO Phil Rumbol with immediate effect. That shared that family business on Thursday with

Rumbol was the first Bahlsen boss who did not come from the owning family. The Brit only took up his post in April 2020, in the middle of the first corona lockdown. Under his leadership, the group should reposition itself. He also announced that around 100 of the 2,600 jobs would be cut over the next three years.

Rumbol comes from branding agency MullenLowe and has previously worked at confectionery maker Cadbury, breweries AB InBev and Heineken, and food group Kraft, among others.

Successor has not been determined

Bahlsen thanked Rumbol for his commitment at the helm of the company. He made an “important contribution to the future of Bahlsen”. A successor to Rumbol has not yet been determined.

It is considered impossible that the children of the former company boss and chairman of the board of directors, Werner Michael Bahlsen, will move to the top of the company. He once told the “Handelsblatt”: “A company is not a playing field for the children of entrepreneurs.”

Bahlsen had already retired as CEO in 2018. There were also several violent differences of opinion in the family about the direction of the business. Co-heiress and daughter Verena Bahlsen, on the other hand, is an “active partner” in the long-term strategy and, as “Chief Mission Officer”, is primarily responsible for innovation, cultural change and brand development.

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Verena Bahlsen made headlines in 2019 with statements about the company’s Nazi past. She told the “Bild” that Bahlsen “paid the forced laborers just like the Germans and treated them well” – a shitstorm followed. She later backtracked and apologized for her statements.


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