Masthead Limited Launches Florenz to Export Top New Zealand Brands Globally

Masthead Limited, a Christchurch-based investment firm, announced today its acquisition of Wedderspoon Organic Group, a leading Manuka honey brand. This move is part of Masthead’s plan to consolidate its consumer brand portfolio into a new holding company called Florenz, which will be led by CEO Mike Tod.

“We believe in the ability of Kiwis to compete and win on the global stage and have installed an outstanding team at Florenz with deep global experience,” said Tod. “Through Florenz, we have started assembling and growing a complementary series of businesses. Florenz is actively looking at other investment opportunities as it seeks to grow a world-class export business to further strengthen the New Zealand economy.”

A key strategy for Florenz is establishing a base in the United States to accelerate the growth of its products in North America. Wedderspoon, with its presence in over 23,000 retail stores including Walmart, Costco, and Whole Foods, provides a solid foundation for building momentum.

Wedderspoon Organic, the largest seller of New Zealand-sourced and manufactured Manuka honey products in North America, has seen impressive growth and success. Founded 19 years ago, its product range includes bottled Manuka honey, Manuka honey lozenges, drops, apple cider vinegar, and Bee Propolis throat sprays. Under CEO Rebecca Remley, Wedderspoon has developed a highly customer-focused business in one of the most challenging markets for New Zealand products.

“We are privileged to become the new custodians of the Wedderspoon brand and to support the growth of the New Zealand Manuka honey industry by building more global awareness of this incredible natural product,” added Tod. “It is terrific to be able to support Rebecca and her team on this next chapter of the Wedderspoon journey as the company seeks to accelerate growth through online and bricks-and-mortar sales in the United States, Canada, and Europe. Product innovation is a key enabler of this type of success, and the team has exciting customer-led product developments in the pipeline.”

Florenz’s portfolio also includes New Zealand-based vitamins and supplements exporter Xtend-Life Group, ingredients manufacturer Dry Food New Zealand, and blackcurrant-based sports performance supplement exporter 2Before Performance Nutrition, which was purchased from Government-owned Plant and Food Research. Additionally, Florenz is a cornerstone shareholder of Harker Herbals Products, an iconic New Zealand herbal remedies company established more than 40 years ago.

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