History of Osem
From the Secret Seven to a Global Food CorporationSince its establishment in 1942, Osem has been working to strengthen and advance the Israeli food industry and the story of the State of Israel as a whole is reflected in the pages of its history. The enthusiastic operation of the production lines at the factories of Osem began before the establishment of the State of Israel and continued even during the severe austerity of the early 1950s.
During that period, the factories of Osem provided food and fair employment to the hundreds of thousands of citizens of the economically stricken state. In the War of Independence, trucks carrying Osem products were among the convoys that had transported supplies to Jerusalem and one of the trucks was even hit by the crossfire and burned down.
Over the years of its existence, Osem has taken in many new immigrants, in all periods and of all origins, who found a home in it. The development of the Company and the establishment of its various factories became an integral part of the advancement of development areas across the country, by creating stable jobs and livelihood.
The Amazing SevenIn 1942, three small pasta manufacturers joined forces in marketing their products and in 1946 they decided to start a factory.
The history of Osem is the tale of the seven founders of the factory: Eugen Propper, Dr. Franz Klein, Ya’akov Lorsh, Azriel Wihl, Shimshon Wilmersdorf, Moshe Katzman and Eliyahu Harpak. They decided that “seven are better”, founding Osem as an organization for the joint marketing of the products of several noodle, spaghetti and macaroni factories that they owned. Noodles... Indeed, this used to be the moniker of pasta.
The Amazing Seven headed the company, leading it to the forefront of both the Israeli and the global food industry. The name chosen at that time - Osem - originates in the prayer of the High Priest on Yom Kippur: “May this year be a year of plenty (osem)”. And, indeed, over the years the founders saw the fruits of their labor and “Osem” became a household name. A name that stands for quality, flavor, health and enjoyment.
Osem was created and developed on the foundations of hard work, perseverance and the determination to follow the righteous path that were the vision of the Seven.
Osem is founded – a consolidation of noodle factories in the Land of Israel.
The first factory of Osem is established in Bnei Brak (operated until 2002).
A soup factory is established on the grounds of the Bnei Brak factory.
Osem initiates export activities and establishes Osem UK in London.
The snack factory in Holon is founded and Bamba is born.
Penetration of a new category – baked goods, by acquiring Lachmenou T-A Mifalei Afia Ltd.
The pasta and baked goods factory is established in Yokneam.
Land is acquired in Petach Tikva on which the headquarters, a sauces and ketchup factory and the central distribution warehouse of the Group are erected.
- Activation of the most advanced distribution center for its period.
- The headquarters of Osem are transferred from Tel Aviv to Petach Tikva.
Acquisition of the companies of Frumin Group, including its factories in Bnei Brak and Sderot.
Osem purchases the Argal Bakery Shop Ltd. for the production of elongated filled cookies (argaliot), taking over its industrial activities and brand name.
A new automated soup factory is established in Sderot.
- A state of the art pasta production line is purchased for the Yokneam factory.
- Acquisition of the full operations of Assis Ltd. in Natanya.
Osem becomes a public company – 25% of its shares are listed for trade on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange.
Osem joins a partnership in Migdanot Habait, a cake factory.
The Breakthrough: Nestle-Osem PartnershipThe Madrid Convention and the lifting of the Arab boycott on companies trading with Israel in the early 1990s facilitated the introduction of a strategic partner into Osem. Following negotiations with several companies, Osem chose the world’s leading food concern, Nestle, that found Osem to be the most suitable Israeli company for integration into its global network.
The Nestle-Osem PartnershipNestle originated in Switzerland but became over time a multi-national worldwide holding company. A renowned business-marketing company of mammoth proportions with extensive know-how in its field, Nestle’s self-defined management strategy prescribes the company’s merging with successful food industry companies worldwide. Nestle’s collaboration with Osem led to the signing of a knowledge transfer agreement, entitling the Osem Group to use Nestle’s knowledge in the fields of product research and development, information systems, and food technologies. The two companies proceeded to exchange workers, enabling Osem to benefit from Nestle’s managers’ extensive experience. Consequently, a Nestle representative was appointed chairman of Osem’s Board of Directors.
Nestle’s partnering with the Osem Group not only demonstrated its faith in the company’s management and operation abilities, but served also as a springboard for Osem’s advancement to new horizons, which could previously only be dreamed of.
The partnership with Nestle created new standards of quality and excellence, and brought about Osem’s implementation of modern work methods, which elevated Osem not only to the forefront of Israel’s food industry, but to the upper-echelon of international food manufacturers.
Its alliance with Nestle proved a tremendous breakthrough for the Osem Group. It opened the door to wide-ranging business activity and enriched Osem’s knowledge-base in a variety of relevant topics – including state-of-the-art technologies, economics, management and finances, as well as marketing and advertising. The Osem Group’s new era expresses itself daily in every task, its work methods, its conduct, and in its drive for excellence in business – an inherent value in the ethical code shared by Nestle and the Osem Group.
The Agreement with Nestle is Signed
- The import of Nestle quality products commences.
- An intellectual property transfer agreement is signed in relation to research and development of products, IT systems and food technologies.
- Acquisition of Mili and penetration of the frozen food category.
- Osem acquires 50% interest in Tivall and merges Mili into it.
- Consolidation of the networks of Ostiv and Frostiv for frozen and chilled distribution and commencement of oil production at the Sderot factory.
Nestle exercises the option that was granted to it and acquires 10% of the shares in Osem Group.
A partnership is established with Tnuva for the production and marketing of Nestle ice creams under the Motta brand name (Tene Noga) and control is acquired in Sabra Salads.
Nestle increases its holdings in Osem Group to 47%.
- Acquisition of 50% of the pickle factory in Beit Hashita.
- Merger of the operations of Beit Hashita and Assis in the fields of canned food, pickled vegetables, concentrate juice and jams.
- Marketing of Friskies, Nestle’s pet food series, commences.
- Hod Lavan is acquired and its activities are transferred to the Off Tov factory, in which Osem holds 50%.
Osem Group increases it share in Tivall to 51%.
- Osem’s trading network is restructured in order to address the excessive differentiation of customers in sales and distribution - consolidation of the distribution networks of Osem Group and Frumin into a single distribution network. Merger of the Ostive chilled distribution networks and the Frostiv frozen distribution network into a single network, under the name Ostive.
- The sales turnover of Osem Group reaches NIS 2 billion for the first time.
Nestle increases its holdings in Osem Group to 50.1%.
Establishment of Nestle’s global center for the research and development of snacks on the grounds of Osem’s Sderot factory and merger of the activity of the Bnei Brak factory into the Sderot factory.
Acquisition of full control in Beit Hashita factory and acquisition of Tnuva’s share in Nestle Ice Creams.
Establishment of Osem Trade Group, which incorporates the overall sales activities of the Group.
Transition to a division-based structure in Osem and the creation of three divisions: Culinary, Baked Goods and Beverages, and Snacks and Breakfast Cereals.
The Sabra factory moves into its new premises in Kiryat Gat and the activity of Ugot Habait (“Homemade Cakes”) factory is relocated from Carmiel to the Yokneam factory.
Planning and commencement of construction of the Logistics Center and the new headquarters building at the Shoham Site in the Modi’in Region.
- The vision of Osem Group is launched: initiative, excellence, integrity, partnership and Israeli identity.
- Osem Group acquires Bonjour.
- The factory in Petach Tikva is shut down and its production lines are transferred to the factories in Sderot and Beit Hashita.
- Tivall inaugurates its new factory in the city of Teplice in the Czech Republic.
Inauguration of Osem’s Shoham Campus that incorporates the largest and most advanced logistics center in the Middle East and the Group’s headquarters building.
- Osem Group adapts to the changes in the markets by establishing two new divisions: Prepared Food Division and Nestle Professional Division.
- Nestle’s Globe Project is implemented in Osem Group.
- Osem Group acquires FoodTech, a U.S. manufacturer of meat substitutes and inaugurates the sauce factory within the compound of the Sderot factory.
The Globe Project is launched and the UK company, Yarden, is acquired.
Gaining a foothold in the infant nutrition sector by acquiring 51% of the operations of Materna.
- Osem steps into the beverages category and launches the Nestea brand.
- Nestle increases its holdings in Osem Group to 58.8%.
Nestle increases its holdings in Osem Group to 63.7%.