The company The Ice Cream Factory launches the iChoc Brand to the market
Guillermo Lamsfus, managing director of The Ice Cream Factory presented yesterday the company’s strategic plan for the coming years, whose main novelty is the incorporation of two new business lines, the iChoc ice creams and the Co-branding.
Ice Cream is Avidesa’s successor, founded in Alzira in 1964 by Luis Suñer, a pioneer and innovative company on ice cream manufacturing. For this reason and now that the company celebrates its 50th anniversary since its foundation, Ice Cream has seen a business opportunity to get inside the market with its own brand and has also developed a wide range of products for the hospitality industry along with leading national companies such as Central Lechera Asturiana, Turrones Picó and Hero.
However, to get to this point, Mr Lamfus remembered the various stages that the company has gone through since it was acquired in 2003 from multinational company Nestlé.
He divided this evolution in three revolutions, as he described it. The first one was the acquisition of the company, when production was devoted exclusively to Nestle with a revenue volume of 25 million euro. However, the end of the sale agreement that allowed the acquisition of the company from the Suisse company forced the second revolution, that is, the intellectual one, as he described it, characterized by the search for new clients at national and international level. With a 63 million euro investment during the following years, the company reached last year a revenue volume of 75 million euro, with sales in 19 countries and 680 own references.
60 per cent of sales come from outside Spain.
International sales were “originally an obligation and currently also vocation”, Mr Lamfus explained that the company needed to adapt its structures in record time to international quality standards and to obtain the most important quality certificates, the “diplomatic passports”, as he described them. And thanks to all this, now 60% of the company’s revenue comes from exports, with markets as relevant as the UK with Tesco, France, Germany, Australia, Malaysia, South Africa, New Zeeland, Israel…
85 per cent of ice cream production is devoted to private label.
Now that the company has consolidated its business as a private label distributor, with a volume of 85% of the total production and a 55% national market share, the company is going back to its origins, launching its own brand, with unique characteristics. And this is the third revolution, the search for opportunities of growth.
In this sense, the iChoc ice creams position themselves as ice creams where chocolate is the star of the product, as it shows in its name. It is presented in a new packaging to be stocked in vertical display. This is a radical change on ice creams display for a premium market and which intends to be the beginning of a successful story.
With regards to the hospitality industry and its growth, the company has integrated a new logo similar to the original one from Avidesa, with the acronym AVI (for Alzira, Valencia and Ice) next to the year 1964 (year when Avidesa was founded). This new business line is, no doubt, a statement of intent where the management team lays their hopes for the coming years.
Finally, so that all these projects can become reality, Mr Lamfus highlighted the role of suppliers and workers. Regarding the company’s suppliers, he insisted on their integration by taking part in the industrialization and innovation of the company. Currently, 46% of raw materials, packaging and packing come from the Valencia region, 30% from the rest of Spain and the remaining 24% from Europe.
With this new strategic plan, Ice Cream expects a turnover for this financial year of 100 million euro, with an ice cream production of over 75 million litres, with 10 active production lines and one and a half million units produced daily.