North German Dynasties III

Bahlsen – biscuits off the production line The Leibniz butter biscuit has accompanied generations of children. The Bahlsen family has been producing biscuits and cakes in Hanover for almost 120 years and is the market leader in the German sweet biscuit market. Hermann Bahlsen is young, well educated and has a small capital. His business idea: with cakes – the English tea biscuit – he wants to make it big in Germany in 1889. His breakthrough comes with his Leibniz butter biscuit. The first assembly line in Europe runs in his “Cakes Factory” in Hanover. -Bahlsen is a pioneer who sets trends. Otto – With the catalogue to success It all started with the mail order of shoes in the 1950s, today the Otto family is one of the richest Germans. The start-up has become a global corporation, the core business then as now is mail order. Werner Otto had just gone bankrupt when he ventured a new start with a mail-order business with three employees in 1949. His first catalogue is hand-bound and customers can choose between 28 pairs of shoes. Within 10 years, “Otto” rises from a small “backyard company” to one of the leading German mail order companies. Today “Otto” is the second largest internet retailer in the world. Darboven – A life for coffee Hardly any company boss is as associated with his product as Albert Darboven is with his idea of coffee. He likes to extol the virtues of “stomach-friendly” in commercials, even in person. 150 years ago, the young merchant Johann Joachim Darboven in Hamburg was the first to pack his roasted coffee in bags. – A lucrative business, even today.

Broadcast date:20.12.2011 / 27.12.2011 7 02.01.2012
Length:3 x 45
Written and directed by:Dagmar Wittmers
Editorial advisor:Silvia Gutmann (NDR)
Production:Ulrike Römhild
Line producer:Anke Meyer
Producer:Brigitta Schübeler
Executive producer:Hartmut Klenke
Filming location:Niedersachsen / Hamburg