Kessenich. Sub-tenants are shortly moving into the Haribo group company building. However, the golden bear is not leaving Kessenich completely.
What is Kessenich without the smell of liquorice? When Hans Riegel set up his first production site in a courtyard on Bergstraße, the smell had not yet filled the streets of south Bonn. The trained confectioner slowly built up his business to be internationally renowned. Despite the relocation of the head office to Grafschaft at the end of April, a part of Haribo is to remain in Bonn.
Hans Riegel started his sweet production equipped with a copper kettle, a sack full of sugar and a marble slab. On 13 December 1920, the trained confectioner registered his company in the commercial register as “Hans-Riegel-Bonn”, from which he derived the acronym “Haribo”. He delivered his first sweets, such as the dancing bear, to kiosks by bicycle. His wife Gertrud supported him as the first employee. Ten years after it was founded, the company had already grown significantly – around 160 employees worked for Riegel. The entrepreneur therefore expanded his company’s headquarters in Kessenich. The current factory’s main building was built between 1930 and 1933.
Part of Haribo will stay in Kessenich
During the war years, the company had to reduce production because of a lack of raw materials. After the early death of Hans Riegel at the age of 52, his wife continued to run the business until their sons, Paul and Hans, returned from being prisoners of war and joined the business. In the meantime, up to 1350 employees worked in Kessenich.
With the relocation to Grafschaft, the company may have moved its headquarters to Rhineland-Palatinate but a part of Haribo remains in Kessenich. Part of the production will continue to take place in the golden bear’s home town and the production buildings and plant administration will therefore remain. The headquarters, the central warehouse and modern production lines will be set up in the Rhineland-Palatinate district of Grafschaft. The administration building, constructed in the 1960s on Hans-Riegel-Straße, will therefore no longer be needed. The company has already found a tenant for the property. The Berufsgenossenschaft Handel und Warenlogistik (BGHW) will use the around 4000 square metres of office space in future. BGHW wants to move in at the start of next year and the lease is fixed for the next 15 years.
But something is also happening a few kilometres further south. A new building for the Bad Godesberg police station is being developed on the Haribo site on Friesdorfer Straße. Officials are expected to start working there in 2020. A new building is also under construction for the factory outlet.
Original text: Sabrina Bauer.