The 2000’s: Brunberg today
Nobody could have foreseen where a simple application would lead, when the bakery apprentice A.W. Lindfors applied for permission in 1971 to start a bakery.
A lot has happened during these 150 years: Finland became an independent state, survived several wars, was urbanized and became a member state of the European Union. Brunberg continued its activities as a family business in Porvoo.
During the 2000’s the company has continued to grow.
In the year 2000, the factory building at Veckjärvi had become too cramped for space and the company extended its site by acquiring a piece of land and a warehouse from the neighbour.
Times had changed – so did the language. In 2001 the “Negro Kiss” was substituted by Kiss, as the original name was deemed no longer acceptable language. The carton logo of the young kissing African couple was also modified and in 2020 the image was substituted by a beautiful picture of Old Porvoo, the home town of Brunberg.
In 2007 lactose free milk chocolate was added to the selection and still today Brunberg is the only manufacturer of lactose free milk chocolate in the Nordic countries.
In the 2010’s the excise duties were increased twice and the consumption dropped temporarily, but it was soon back on the same level as before.
A new Managing Director for Brunberg
In 2011 Tom Brunberg retired after heading the company for about 15 years, but he continued to be close to the activities as Chairman of the Board.
The old sweets factory at Raatihuoneenkatu was sold in 2011. It marked the end of an era and the beginning of a new one.
In 2011 Katarina Enholm, born in Porvoo, was appointed Managing Director.
As a child, Katarina Enholm had enjoyed the fragrancies and flavours of the factory shop. For 15 years she had worked in the ice cream business and now she moved on to another kind of delicacies, sweets.
Even though the factory is no longer headed by a family member, the descendants of Lennart Brunberg take an active interest in the company. The children of Börje Brunberg, Tom Brunberg and Janne Brunberg, and the children of Ulla Somervalli, Martina Somervalli, Helena Somervalli and Camilla Somervalli-Aavarinne are members of the board. Helena Somervalli’s son Tom Somervalli is Chairman of the Board. Magnus Björklund and Mats Sjöström are also members of the board.
Brunberg grows and reinvents itself
The new Managing Director, Katarina Enholm, focuses on up-to-date production techniques, automation and growth of production capacity, export and finding new market niches.
As a small company, competing in the larger market areas can be complicated and, therefore, Brunberg started focusing on special products, such as lactose free, sugar free and vegan products.
Brunberg has also taken up handmade confectionary. This was one of Börje Brunberg’s dreams, which Annika Brunberg made come true. The first handmade products were available on the market in 2012.
The packaging was modernized and made more attractive.
In the 2010’s the production capacity increased and sales went up with 30%.
Porvoo of old times and Porvoo today
During 150 years Porvoo has grown from a small town of 3 500 residents to a city of 50 300 residents. Instead of horses we see cars on the streets, living conditions have improved and the former agricultural country has become an information society.
But the sweets are just as tasty – from one decade or century to another.
Brunberg is today one of the most prestigious brands in Finland and the fourth biggest candy brand in the country.
Behind the success there are dedicated and loyal employees, purposeful leaders, the tenacity of the family business and long-standing products of high quality.
In 2021 Brunberg will be 150 respectable years old.
Time will tell what the next 150 years will bring.