MUNICH, GERMANY — As exhibitors settled into the iba trade show, being held Sept. 15-20 in Munich, Middleby Bakery Group hosted guests in its booth to celebrate the success of its brands, including Auto-Bake, Burford Corp. Spooner Vicars, Stewart Systems and many others.
Selim Bassoul, chairman and chief executive officer, Middleby Corp., who had originally planned to address guests at the event, was unable to attend because he was caring for his ailing father. Speaking on his behalf, Mark Salman, president, Middleby Food Processing Group, shared a message from Mr. Bassoul.
“I deeply apologize for not being with you here at iba,” he said. “My father is 91 years old and has lived a long and wonderful life. It’s difficult to watch him suffer. He was so supportive of me to join Middleby back in 2000, when other people questioned my rationale to join Middleby. I can tell you hundreds of stories, but the past few days have been very special. I hope everyone enjoys the show and our party. Long live the bakery industry, and long live iba.”
Mr. Salman went on to point out the leaders of Middleby’s baking industry brands who have been integral in the company’s success.
Those who received recognition included Scott McCally, president, Auto-Bake; Fred Springer, president, Burford Corp.; Rob Gregg, vice-president of sales, Hinds Bock; Mike Scouten, vice-president of sales and marketing, Stewart Systems and Baker Thermal; Balaji Subramaniam, president, Spooner Vicars; Soren Andersen, managing director, Scanico; Jan Zimmermann, managing director, Varimixer; Peter Larsson, managing director, Sveba Dahlen and Glimek; Asa Ericsson, marketing and communication manager, Sveba Dahlen; and Teresa Ruder, sales and marketing coordinator, Burford Corp.
“You all have done an amazing job,” Mr. Salman said, noting that in three years, Middleby Bakery has tripled in size, now with 10 legacy brands and 10 global offices.
“The innovation that we have done here is amazing,” Mr. Salman said. “The people behind us are dedicated and take pride in what they do. They’re innovators, and they take ownership. These ladies and gentlemen are owners of this business.”
Mr. McCally noted that the “why” behind what Middleby does is rooted in changing lives, whether for its employees, its customers or the consumers the brands ultimately serve.
“That sounds big,” Mr. McCally said. “But that really is Selim’s mission to change lives. He is a visionary and the quintessential customer advocate.”
Mr. McCally started with Stewart Systems, which was acquired by Middleby in 2012.
“We were entrepreneurs with big ideas and little cash flow, and when Middleby bought us, it changed our lives,” he said. “It allowed us the freedom and direction to do some really important things in our industry.”
The Middleby Bakery Group booth can be found in booth 120 of Hall B1 at the iba show.