Profile: Wade Lyn – founder and CEO Cleone Foods
Wade Lyn – founder and CEO Cleone Foods. PHOTO/Midlands Business News
Jamaican entrepreneur Wade Lyn is the founder and CEO of Cleone Foods a company that has successfully brought a taste of the Caribbean to Britain.
Cleone Foods produce authentic Caribbean patties and pastries under the Island Delight brand, and was the first company in Britain to produce an authentic Caribbean product sold through supermarkets which used only original Jamaican recipes.
In 1986, Lyn abandoned plans to become a teacher to launch a company that would manufacture Jamaican patties, and instead of starting small in the kitchen, he took on a 4,000 square foot factory and hired five staff.
Cleone Foods has grown and sold £2.4 million (US$ 3.76 million) worth of pastry snacks in 2011 and is now and an authorized supplier for the London 2012 Olympic games.
Cleone Foods owes its survival to patience and careful planning. The bulk of Cleone Foods revenues now comes from deals with supermarkets, however, Lyn deliberately avoided them in the early years. “I wasn’t ready for the multiples. You need a proven track record.”
Lyn instead looked for early sales from independent retailers.
Cleone Foods has been awarded the accolade of being overall winner of 2012 Santander Responsible Small Company Award at this year’s Business in the Community’s (BITC) Awards for Excellence, held in London on Wednesday 27th June and attended by HRH The Prince of Wales.
Source: The Daily Telegraph