Belgian chocolatier Leonidas has appointed Wendy Beelen as Sales Manager Travel Retail, with an initial focus on the European market.
Beelen brings to the role more than 16 years’ experience in the chocolate sector, where she most recently held the position of Senior Area Manager Europe: Global Travel Retail, Wholesale, Digital & Business Development at Godiva.
“Since taking the decision to pursue my career with Leonidas, I’m very excited to be part of the family,” she noted. “I am ready to write a new success story and thrilled to be joining Leonidas as it looks ahead to a great future.”
Beelen will report to William Legallais, Leonidas Global Travel Retail Sales Manager. He noted: “We are delighted to welcome Wendy to the team. Her appointment is reflective of Leonidas’ ongoing success in travel retail.”
Travel retail sales soar +30%
Leonidas has enjoyed a substantial +30% increase in its travel retail business to the end of June 2023, compared with 2019.
“Leonidas benefits from a unique positioning, as it offers premium chocolate at an affordable price,” Legallais continued. “Our product offer fills a gap between the expensive premium brands and the travel retail mass market brands. In that way, Leonidas delivers incremental sales and adds value.”
He added: “Leonidas is very committed to travel retail. The company is fortunate to have a very flexible approach. Throughout the difficult COVID pandemic period Leonidas kept business relationships going. Brand presence remained high, and we ensured that product was available to our retailers.”
Legallais concluded: “This level of support is very important to us as we consider further potential to develop within the travel retail channel.”
Leonidas revamped its travel retail exclusive range last April, and will introduce a new line at the TFWA World Exhibition in Cannes this October.