It has long been speculated, but now it's official: after years of internal dissension and family strife, the Bielefeld-based Oetker group is being split into two.
The decision to split the group, which comprises more than 400 companies, into two independently operating units was announced by the German group itself, reports German magazine Markenartikel. The division according to family lines will thus soon become a reality.
Eight children in total are descended from the three marriages of Rudolf August Oetker, who died in 2007 and rebuilt the company after the Second World War. They each own 12.5% of the shares. Some of the heirs, including Richard Oetker, continue to own the food division. This includes frozen pizzas, baking ingredients and ready-made pastries. They will also gain control of the Radeberger brewery and a number of smaller companies.
The other group of shareholders, which includes Dr Alfred Oetker and Carl Ferdinand Oetker, will own the sparkling wine producer Henkell, the online wine business Belvini, some companies in the hotel management sector, the chemicals company Budenheim KG and the art collection Rudolf August Oetker GmbH, among others.
By the end of this year, the split should be completed. There would be no consequences for the employees.