August Ivar Lindfors, head of Division to the National Board of Trade
Ivar Lindfors (21.6.1872-26.4.1950) was a true all-rounder in the business world.
In addition to the A.W. Lindfors sweets and marmalade factory, he was head of Ab Ivar Lindfors Oy (since 1918), a metal and construction company with office in Helsinki.
As a young boy Ivar Lindfors moved to Helsinki after graduating from Porvoo high school in 1891.
Ivar Lindfors was the majority owner of Lovisa Railway Oy, Chairman of the Board of Helsinki Magazine Ltd., director of the Finnish Port Authority and the Finnish Port Association. He was furthermore an influential force in Helsinki Telephone Company (later Elisa Oyj).
From 1919 to 1925 he was director of the sweets factory owned by his wife’s, Ida Louise Lindfors (born Blomqvist) family, Aktiebolaget Blomqvist & Co Osakeyhtiö. Blomqvist & Co was Finland’s second biggest sweets factory and an important producer of chocolate, candies, pastilles, marmalade and biscuits.
Ivar Lindfors was above all a central trustee in the business world and an influential force in the municipality of Helsinki. He was councilor in Helsinki City Council, chairman of the Finland Chamber of Commerce and occupied several positions of trust.
Ivar Lindfors was said to be objective, impartial and a skillful mediator.
He was married twice, first to Ida Louise and later to Aili Theslöf. There were six children in the family: Ragnar, Irma, Margit, Berith, Elma and a daughter who died young.
In his leisure time he practiced sports, such as skiing and cycling. He is said to have skated from Porvoo to Helsinki, fell into a hole in the ice, dried himself and bravely continued to his destination. He bought a farm in the city of Espoo where he liked to spend time farming.
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1. Bakery founded
(1870-1890) About 150 years ago... A.W. Lindfors sets up his bakery in 1871 By the river of Porvoo, in the town with the red wooden houses along the waterway and the curvy cobblestone roads, the population enjoyed a period of economic recovery in the 1870’s. Around 3 500 residents lived in Porvoo, the majority still in [...]
2. Family enterprise
An enterprise for the whole family The family of A.W. Lindfors consisted of his wife, Wilhelmina (born Saarinko) and seven children: Ivar, Karl, Adolf, Axel, Viktor, Aina and Sigrid. They were all engaged in the bakery business and later on in the sweets factory, in one way or another. It really was a family business [...]
3. Sweets factory founded
A.W. Lindfors sets up a sweets factory In the spring of 1897 the baker A.W. Lindfors informed that he was going to produce sweets, chocolate and marmalade and other products included in the bakery range. The factory was named A.W. Lindfors sweets and marmalade factory. He wanted the factory to satisfy the craving for sweets [...]
5. Years 1906-1920
Lindfors sweets factory grows steadily (1906-1920) After the death of A.W. Lindfors, Ivar Lindfors continued developing the factory. The subsequent years were prosperous. In 1907 a 16 year old apprentice, Lennart Brunberg was employed. The young man learnt how to make sweets and little by little he started dreaming of a factory of his own. [...]
6. Brunberg sweets factory founded
Lennart Brunberg sets up his own sweets factory in 1922 The 1920’s was a decade of grand festivities and belief in the future, a period of reconstruction of Finland. During prohibition illegally imported alcohol from Estonia could be bought in the restaurants. The improvement of alimentation and health services and new inventions made life easier. [...]
7. Lennart Brunberg
Lennart Brunberg – sweets manufacturer and music lover Lennart Brunberg (1891-1945) was not only a manufacturer of sweets; he was also a cultural personality, aware of his social responsibility. Closest to his heart was music. He played the violin and the cello and sang in the choir of the sports association Akilles, led by the [...]
8. The 1930’s
The 1930’s – Brunberg survives the recession The 1930’s was a decade of social upheaval. The Finnish people were twice put to the test: first after the stock market crush and the second time when World War II broke out in September of 1939. However, the decade also held hope and belief in the future. [...]
9. The 1940’s
1940’s: the decade of World War II and a tragic fire During the Second World War, Porvoo was bombed on several occasions. When the sirens went off, the residents ran to bomb shelters, one of which was located in the basement of the Brunberg-Lindfors factory. The war kept people in constant fear and the shortage [...]
10. Börje Brunberg
Börje Brunberg, an innovative nautical enthusiast Börje Lennart Brunberg (born 1924) was a popular and determined managing director who tirelessly and purposefully managed to get the Brunberg sweets factory back on its feet after the war and the death of his father, Lennart Brunberg. Börje Brunberg was an enterprising and innovative person with a dream: [...]
11. The 1950’s
The 1950’s: Kisses, television sets and second-hand bags In the post-war era the cities grew and living conditions improved. Many moved into the new houses called “rintamamiestalo” - modern detached houses built after the war for the families of soldiers who fought in the battlefront - and started a family. New trends came from around [...]
12. The 1960’s
1960’s, the mechanization of the Brunberg factory In the 1960’s, major changes took place in the Finnish society. People migrated from countryside to cities, standard of living improved and consumption grew, even though non-essential products were avoided – the hard years were still vivid in people’s memory. Factories were mechanized and production was made more [...]
13. The 1970’s
The 1970’s, the decade of sweets A well-known Finnish singer, the avant-garde A.M. Numminen, sang in the 1970’s something like: “Eat sweets only on Saturday Sweet Day, never on any other day”. The Finnish people were crazy about sweets and consumption increased to almost seven kilos per year and per person. The 1970’s was the [...]
14. The 1980’s
The 1980’s: inauguration of new premises for Brunberg In the 80’s the Brunberg production grew to previously unknown heights. In the 50’s a production of barely 150 tons was reached, in the 60’s almost 250 tons and in the 70’s 600 tons – now the factory reached a production of 1 200 tons. The volume had [...]
15. The 1990’s
The 1990’s: Recession and new sweets The 45-year long career of Börje Brunberg had come to an end. He had modernized the factory and multiplied production. In 1991 Börje Brunberg retired. A new managing director was appointed, Ph.D. Raimo Keskinen, who was manager of the company until 1997. Börje Brunberg had devoted his time and [...]
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 [...]