Bon Bon Buddies Group of companies (BBB) is Europe’s leading specialist supplier of licensed character and branded confectionery.
Now celebrating its 20th anniversary, BBB is led by founder and Managing Director Chris Howarth, who identified a niche in the market in 1993. Sales grew to £13 million by 2003 and were further bolstered when the company started exporting. Sales continued to grow rapidly year-on-year, rising to £39 million in 2012.
Above: BBB Everyday product display
ENOC pertol station, Dubai.
Left: Brain Blasters display stand in Union Coop Dubai.
Right: BBB Easter product display in Auchan, France
Employing 155 staff, BBB has eight dedicated European sales and logistics facilities with further distribution in Central Eastern Europe, the Middle East and China. BBB also owns its own UK chocolate factory which produces for BBB and major confectionery brands. BBB outsourcing production to ‘best in class’ global manufacturing partners guarantees optimum capacity and flexibility.
With 90% of the range under leading license brands, BBB are the only license business in Europe to offer a complete product portfolio across all categories, season’s and everyday confectionery. BBB is a ‘one stop’ shop for retailers, with a proven track record of identifying, signing and delivering exceptional character license confectionery ranges.
Proud of its market leading reputation with major licensing partners such as Disney, Warner Bros, Marvel, BBC, Mattel and Hasbro, BBB has a number of pan-European and multi-market license agreements in place.
BBB review trends, identifying the most popular license brands for the next 3 years on a rolling forecast basis, ensuring that they always have the top 10 properties for Europe in the portfolio. Achieving preferred licensee status by offering licensors simplicity and a 'total solution', BBB meet their needs by reaching all appropriate sectors of the European confectionery markets with experience and proven management of the complexities in character licensing.
The product range includes confectionery with characters such as Disney Princess, Cars, Mickey Mouse, Spiderman, Moshi Monsters, Barbie, Monster High, Super Mario Bros and One Direction, plus its own specialist kids confectionery brands such as the mega sour brand ‘Brain Blasterz’.
BBB has capitalised on its own supply routes into major European retailers such as Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Carrefour, Leclerc, Bedronka and Metro by handling the exclusive distribution of major brands including PEZ, Ritter Sport and the Jelly Bean Factory into its markets.
Mr Howarth said: “We are thrilled to have received this accolade which celebrates outstanding achievements in UK businesses. Winning a Queen’s Awards for Enterprise is an honour for the company and great recognition of our continued success and sales in the overseas confectionary markets as well as recognition of the exceptional work of our team.
“The past three years have seen significant growth for BBB. We now export to 40 countries including the majority of EU countries and in 2012 we entered a number of new markets including Finland, Austria, Hungary, Slovakia and the Middle East.
“Our strategy is focused on increasing our market position as Europe’s leading supplier of everyday and seasonal licensed character and branded confectionary. We aim to further grow sales over the next five years to in excess of £80 million and the proportion of non-UK sales from 57% to over 75%”
BBB were also featured in the Sunday Times HSBC International Track 200 League Table, which ranks Britain’s fastest growing international sales performers.