This is Why This Entrepreneur Gave Up Management of Her Profitable Chocolate Firm

The co-founder and former CEO of Lily’s Sweets determined the most effective factor for the corporate was to take a step again.

February
11, 2019

three min learn

Sometimes, when traders take over management of a enterprise from its founder, it is a dangerous signal. However for Cynthia Tice and her chocolate enterprise, Lily’s Sweets, it was an acknowledgement that typically an entrepreneur will not be the particular person greatest suited to steer an organization because it grows.

“Whereas I all the time believed Lily’s would achieve success, this increasing mainstream client consciousness and want for change created a groundswell for progress for Lily’s Sweets past what I might have imagined,” mentioned Tice, who will stay on the firm as its “aware.” “By 2017, I used to be conscious that Lily’s had outgrown our group of 4 individuals, two being my kids, and my expertise consulting different manufacturers afforded me an appreciation of simply how particular Lily’s was. I needed to offer the model the chance that it deserved, and determined bringing on an investor and management that might develop a group would greatest set Lily’s as much as meet its full potential.”

Picture credit score: Courtesy Lily’s Sweets

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Since I final featured Lily’s Sweets in The Digest, the corporate obtained an undisclosed funding with VMG Companions and moved from a digital workforce to an workplace in Boulder, Colo., the principle hub of pure meals within the U.S. The corporate mentioned its enterprise doubled in 2018, with its retail footprint increasing from three,000 U.S. shops in 2017 to 10,000. Lily’s has redesigned its packaging and plans to introduce new merchandise, together with chocolate lined peanuts and almonds and peanut butter cups, this yr. Its group has expanded to 25, and is now led by Jane Miller, who has led a wide range of meals firms and had served because the division president of Frito-Lay at PepsiCo from 1984 to 1997.

“Most of my profession in client packaged items has been targeted on fixing issues, and this chance offered simply the other state of affairs,” Miller mentioned. “With 84 p.c of shoppers seeking to cut back their sugar consumption, in keeping with Mintel, I noticed becoming a member of the Lily’s Sweets group as a possibility to proceed the expansion of one thing particular.”

Tice co-founded Lily’s Sweets with its stevia-sweetened chocolate in 2011. The pure sweetener had been deemed as secure by the FDA solely three years prior. Lily’s launched nationally with Entire Meals in 2012.

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