The appointment follows the recent investment into Montezuma’s by Inverleith LLP, an Edinburgh based private equity fund which specialises in consumer brand investment.
Montezuma’s Chocolate was founded by Helen and Simon Pattinson in 2000 with a single chocolate shop in Brighton. During the last 18 years, the company has steadily grown, establishing itself as a leading independent British manufacturer of premium artisan chocolate. It now manufactures chocolate bars, truffles and gifting products, runs a ‘Chocolate Club’ and has retail stores in the south-east of England and London.
New marketing campaigns
Recent investment by Inverleith LLP will see the company expand its UK and international distribution, continue its focus on innovation, with products such as its recent dairy free, ‘Like No Udder’ chocolate bar, and see new marketing campaigns drive awareness.
Taylor is an established and respected industry figure within the FMCG sector. He began his career at Kraft Foods, where he spent 12 years establishing a firm grounding within commercial functions. He went on to join Kellogg’s in 2006, initially as head of convenience and food service, before rising to become the UK sales director.
In 2011, Taylor moved to Mondelez, initially as the field sales director for the UK. In 2014, he became the managing director for Mondelez in the Nordics, before taking up the role of managing director for the UK & Ireland in 2016, a position he held until his departure from Mondelez in 2018 to pursue non-executive opportunities.
On his most recent appointment, he said: “Over a number of years, Montezuma’s Chocolates has developed a strong reputation as an independent British manufacturer of premium, high quality chocolate. Its growth to date has been mainly organic and many are yet to discover the quality of its range of products. With the investment from Inverleith LLP, there is now an opportunity to pro-actively grow the awareness and distribution of the Montezuma’s brand and tap into the continued consumer desire for high quality, premium chocolate with a fun and engaging brand.
“Montezuma’s Chocolates is a brand with exciting potential and I am looking forward to working closely with the founders, Inverleith LLP and a new executive management team to see this brand become a household favourite in the UK and in other countries where its qualities are yet to be discovered.”
Montezuma founders Helen and Simon Pattinson, said: ‘We are absolutely delighted that Michael is joining Montezuma’s Chocolates as the chairman of our board of directors. He brings a wealth of experience and expertise within the chocolate and wider FMCG industry, both within the UK and Europe. With his strong commercial background, we believe that Michael will be a great appointment as chair of the board, helping to guide and steer Montezuma’s as we look to continue to drive the success of the brand, both in the UK and internationally.’
Also joining the board of directors, as non-executives are: Paul Skipworth, ex chief executive of The Glenmorangie Company, artner L Capital and managing partner of Inverleith LLP, as well as Michael Atkinson, Inverleith LLP’s operating & brand Director. The founders of Montezuma’s Chocolates, Helen and Simon Pattinson, will sit on the board of directors, as will a new managing director, who will be appointed following a period of transition during which the founders are stepping away from day to day management of the business.