Despite a long career in food and drink sales and marketing, Andrew Chesters, MD of Rivermill Foods, says he would have been unable to start up his business without founding partner Russell White.
Their paths crossed while White was working as a buyer for Safeway’s bakery section and Chesters was commercial director at Sharwoods.
Three years ago the pair got together to form Rivermill Foods, which is now UK licensee for the Loyd Grossman range of bakery products.
Chesters and White both used their background and experience in the grocery sector to recognise what Chesters terms as “a gap in the bakery section in terms of quality and brand”.
They approached Loyd Grossman to discuss whether the food guru would be interested in complementing his portfolio of products with a range of high-quality naan, ciabatta and focaccia breads.
Chesters says Loyd became “very involved and excited with the project”, so Rivermill went ahead with the idea.
The company now controls the outsourcing of the brands, organising delivery through British Bakeries to deliver direct to supermarkets and arranging central distribution for longer-life products.
Chesters previously worked on numerous brands, including St Ivel’s fromage frais ranges and Hovis at RHM, where he was marketing manager.
He says he enjoys working with White. “When Russell joins a conversation, he brings it alive. He thinks from a buyer’s perspective.”
Perfect partnership for quality products