Wade Gillooly is a shareholder and CEO at ABE’s Bagels and runs a private investment food group Marmont Private Capital with a passion for growing NZ food manufacturing businesses. ABE’s is the largest bagel business across Australasia, employing over 100 people. ABE’s Bagel Bakery won the Ports of Auckland Exporter of the Year Award (export revenue $10m-$25m) at the 2017 Air New Zealand Cargo ExportNZ Awards. ABE's is also a Deloitte Fast 50 Company.
The judges felt ABE's had the clearest and most realistic path to future success. The company knew the market intimately and the measurement techniques were impressive. With the merchandisers on the ground, the company has excellent feedback on successes and possible problems. The planning strategies within a tight timetable in both the Australian market and the new Asian opportunity markets, seemed to be well thought through and the planning for the future expected growth with Capex funding already in place for new equipment, which is essential for this to happen.
There appeared to be good governance in place and the regular visits to the markets showed in the results being achieved. The wise counsel from existing producers especially in the USA and the Board as a whole, is a definite plus and is showing through with the product development and new marketing opportunities. Also the “new” frozen & chilled models being used for the Australian market is a real plus and shows the product now being supported in some major supermarket chains and possibilities with other similar avenues in the near future.
The innovative development of the Smoking Gun Bagels café in Sydney is a smart method to educate the Australian public about the ways to use bagels and with the development of the Café Bagel Experience at home is an innovative approach to educating the prospective consumers. Also using other brands for flavours for the Bagel Chips is an exciting development and excellent marketing opportunity.