Exclusive Interview - Love Cocoa founder

Cadbury descendant feels ‘immense pressure’ linking last name to chocolate startup

By Douglas Yu

- Last updated on GMT

James Cadbury hopes to provide letterbox delivery chocolate with startup, Love Cocoa and eyes premium retail listings and an own-store chain
James Cadbury hopes to provide letterbox delivery chocolate with startup, Love Cocoa and eyes premium retail listings and an own-store chain

Related tags Cadbury Chocolate John cadbury

John Cadbury’s great great great grandson, James Cadbury, has received 150 orders in only five days after he launched his chocolate startup, Love Cocoa.

But the young British man says his startup is unconnected to his family's business, which now a part of multinational giant Mondelēz.

“To mention [Love Cocoa] in their name is obviously nice, but brings immense pressure,”​ James Cadbury told ConfectioneryNews.

However, Love Cocoa​ was certainly inspired by his ancestors, he added.

James Cadbury established Love Cocoa just seven months ago.

Love Cocoa’s initial range of 85-gram chocolate bars features traditional British flavors, including Honeycomb and honey, English mint, earl gray, and Maldon sea salt, as well as milk and dark chocolate. Each bar retails at $4.50 on the company’s website.

Love Cocoa bars are handmade in the UK, using organic and fair trade cocoa, sourced from the Dominican Republic and Ecuador, according to the company.

The firm buys chocolate coverture from a family ran business that works closely with farmers. Other natural ingredients are supplied by independent British producers.

“For example, Barnes & Webb honey from London, Summerdown Farms English mint from Basingstoke and Maldon Sea Salt from Essex,”​ Cadbury said. 

Brand new to chocolate industry

“I have never worked with Cadbury before or in this industry. My background is investment banking and I was recently trading for an investment manager. This could not be more different but I am enjoying the challenges,”​ he said.

When George Cadbury, John Cadbury’s son, founded the company back in the 19th​ century, no recipe existed for chocolate confectionery. It took years for Cadbury family to come up with a chocolate bar.

Cadbury said when George went to Netherlands, not speaking a word of Dutch, he bought a cocoa press with the money he was supposed to use for his wedding. That cocoa press helped Cadbury launch its first Cocoa Essence bar.

“When I have a problem ​[with my startup], I just think that it is so much easier than any problems they may have faced what with the internet around today as well as advanced technology,”​ Cadbury said.

Targeting gifting market

Cadbury was inspired to begin a chocolate company when he was looking for a gift for his Mom on her birthday, but could not find a service that delivered overnight and a gift that could fit through the letterbox.

“Most retailers require items to be signed for, and that ruins the surprise. In the end, I popped a handmade card and some chocolate in the post,”​ Cadbury said.

“What if I could do this from the comfort of my own home? I thought, and I knew I’d spotted a gap in the market for premium letterbox-friendly chocolate gifts.”

Currently, most of the major luxury chocolate brands in the UK have an online presence, but seem to focus in-store, Cadbury explained.

“Further, they do not offer next day delivery and often charge a lot of postage and require the recipient to be in. We are trying to solve this issue with our chocolate design to fit through the letterbox.”

Looking to expand business through new investment

Cadbury has spent over £30,000 ($38,748), plus a £10,000 ($12,920) Virgin startup loan, on launching Love Cocoa.

Even though Love Cocoa is currently focused on direct online service to its customers, the company is looking to stock its products at retail, high-end department stores, and hoped to develop its own concept stores in the future.

“We are looking to expand the business through angel investment or crowdfunding,”​ Cadbury said. “I like the idea of crowdfunding as people who like the product have a chance to also own part of the business and endorse it.”

In addition, Love Cocoa is also planning to launch Google advertising and Facebook ads next week.

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1 comment

Descendientes de Mr. Cadbury

Posted by Marcelo,

Muy interesante . Te la pasó para que la leas.Rodolfo

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