Sheldon Lavin: the Driving Force Behind OSI Group

OSI Group operates 65 outlets in 17 countries and has 20,000 employees, making it among the world’s largest food provider. Its humble beginnings date back to 1909 when Otto Kolschowsky owned Otto & Sons, butcher shop, and small meat market. However, it is not until 1955 when the business became McDonald’s first hamburger supplier that the company started growing. In 1973, it began operating a factory specializing in meeting the McDonald’s needs. Sheldon Lavin joined the company in the 1970s, helping the brothers reach the global market alongside McDonald’s expansion. Otto & Sons changed to become OSI Group in 1995 and continued expanding to various countries in the 1980s and 1990s. The rapid growth in the early 1980s led to Sheldon Lavin becoming the CEO and Chairman. OSI’s Sheldon Lavin receives Global Visionary Award.

OSI Group entered the Asia-Pacific market through a joint venture in 1987 with K & K Foods, and later GenOsi in 1990. OSI Group ventured the fresh produce sector through acquisitions in China. In Australia, it acquired a company that welcomed it to the beef industry in the country. In 2014, it enlarged its beef distribution in Europe by entering a joint venture with Pickstock in the UK. OSI Group ventured into value-added meat products by going into business with Select Ready Foods in Canada. In Germany, it joined with EDEKA, a well-known supermarket chain. In2016, it acquired Tyson which increased OSI Group’s growth through the additional storage space. It also bought the controlling stake of Baho Food in the Netherlands. Still, in 2016, OSI Group acquired Flagship Europe in the UK and Germany’s Hynek Schlachthof GmbH.

Sheldon Lavin, being a banking executive and an investor, brought his experience and passion for succeeding to OSI Group, when he joined the business as a partner. He initially had a third in stake in the company but later obtained a half interest when one of the brothers sold his stake. Lavin then got 100% stake when the other brother also retired. Sheldon Lavin decided if he had to continue with the business, he had to keep expanding strategically. He is behind the global expansion in the 1970s.

Sheldon Lavin had strategically planned made the acquisitions, joint ventures, and purchases. He as well emphasized his expansion in green innovations. Mr. Lavin does not plan on exiting, and he is committed to reducing environmental impact, being socially responsible and advancing a supply chain that is sustainable.

Sheldon Lavin’s Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/public/Sheldon-Lavin

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