Eight years with the dairy and desserts giant gave Averdieck a taste for bringing new products to market, but he decided to leave after coming up with an idea which he claims he had little chance of selling to the Uniq hierarchy.
Instead, Averdieck jumped into a joint partnership with north London-based Rensow Patisserie and the result is a range of premium puds called Gü which he believes has the potential to become a £5m brand within two years.
Three styles ­ chocolate truffles with raspberry compote, chocolate amaretto truffles and hot chocolate soufflé (which can be heated in the oven or microwave) ­ come in packs of two and feature glass ramekins for an upmarket touch. However, they're not cheap with each pack carrying an rsp of £2.49. Sainsbury and Waitrose were the first multiples to buy into the desserts and started stocking them in May, while Harrods and Selfridges joined in last month. Somerfield starts stocking them from the middle of this month.
"I always wanted to do something which was chocolate and premium when I was with Uniq but there wasn't the interest," says Averdieck, who has given himself the grandiose moniker of chief Gü-meister'. "I also believed that there was a great opportunity for a new brand to do this rather than own label."
A tie-up with Rensow made Averdieck's vision a reality and the collaboration, set up under the name of Rensow Ltd, started building its brand.
The big test now will be how willing consumers will be to part with £2.49 of their hard-earned cash but Averdieck, who claims the desserts are perfect dinner party fodder, insists sales are already "ahead of expectations" at £28,000 a week.
"My prediction had been for sales of just under £20,000 a week and to become a £1m brand within a year," says Averdieck. "I am particularly pleased as we have launched during the summer and it may not have been the perfect time for this type of product."
Averdieck is considering expanding the portfolio and marketing is set to include advertising in consumer magazines. One plus is that Joanne Harris, the author of bestselling novel Chocolat, has agreed to endorse the products.
Averdieck adds: "My plan is for Gü to become a £5m brand within two years and I think that is very achievable. We are already on course to notch up £2m."