France: Passelande becomes CEO of Groupe Soufflet

Christophe Passelande, CEO of Malteries Soufflet, one of the world’s leading malting companies, will move up to become CEO of Groupe Soufflet as of March 1, according to a report in Les Marchés on Tuesday.

The 54-year old manager has spent nearly his entire professional life with the same agricultural business. He started in 1990 in Soufflet Negoce, the trading and logistics company of Soufflet, and worked there as an Administrative and Financial Director. After seven years he changed to become Financial Director at Malteries Soufflet, the malting arm of the family-owned business.  Another 9 years later, in 2007, he became CEO of the malting business and helped to develop it into one of the leading maltsters of the world.

Groupe Soufflet was established in 1900 by Pierre and Lucie Juchat as a grain business at Nogent-sur-Seine in France’s Champagne region.  It was passed on in 1927 to their son-in-law Jean Soufflet, who bought in 1953 a malt plant in Nogent-sur-Seine. After his father’s death in 1957 Michel Soufflet took over the business and started the national and international expansion. In 1981 his son Jean-Michel Soufflet (today 62 years old) began his career in the Group. In 2001 he was appointed Chairman of the Executive Board and his father Michel Soufflet (today 88 years old) became Chairman of the Supervisory Board.

Today, the group consists of 58 production sites in 19 countries and generates 61% of its turnover internationally. It employs 7,520 employees, including 5,198 in France.  The turnover  in the last fiscal year, which ended June 30, 2018, was EUR 4.45 billion. The business is structured around the four sectors agriculture and markets, wheat, barley and rice and pulses.

Soufflet Agriculture, which is the largest activity of Groupe Soufflet had last year a turnover of EUR 1.73 billion and employed over 1.500 employees in France. It was able to source 5.855.611 tons of grain mostly directly from farms.

Soufflet Negoce, the trading arm of the group, operates 5 port silos and has a global turnover of EUR 1.40 billion.

Malting achieved in the last fiscal year a turnover of EUR 817 million with 27 malting sites. The group produced in total 2.28 million tons of malt with an export quota (of malt exported out of the country of production) of 45%.

Bakery Food, involved in the production and distribution of a wide range of mass-produced bakery products, achieved a turnover of EUR 413 million with 12 production sites in France and 1 in Portugal.

Milling, the third largest production actitivity, had in the last fiscal year a turnover of EUR 369 million with 8 mills in France and Belgium.

Rice and Pulses achieved last year a turnover of EUR 177 million with 170.500 tons.

Other smaller businesses included vineyards (EUR 78 million), fast food (EUR 72 million), ingredients (EUR 70 million) and bio technology (EUR 17 million).

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