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Network

Aside from the central group comprising the subsidiaries, the OIKOPOLIS network includes external companies in which the parent company OIKOPOLIS holds minority shares. This guarantees them a certain financial security, while preserving their operational independence. Thanks to their integration in the OIKOPOLIS network, they also benefit from many synergy effects, which reduce their costs and may improve their turnover.

Networking at various levels makes a major contribution to safeguarding the existence of small businesses or, at least, facilitating this. Consequently, the reasons that prompt potential members of the network to join OIKOPOLIS are not only financial but also philosophical. That is why the financial stakes held by the parent company OIKOPOLIS vary considerably: it may hold anything from less than 1% to 50% of the shares in a company.

20190901 OPSA Netzwerk

For those who are interested: for a French language version of the diagram, please consult the adjacent column

Networking at various levels makes an important contribution to assuring the viability of small businesses or, at least, facilitating this. Consequently, the reasons that prompt potential members of the network to join OIKOPOLIS are not only financial but also philosophical. That is why the financial stakes held by the parent company OIKOPOLIS vary considerably: it may hold anything from less than 1% to 50% of the shares in a company.

Image: Overview of the holdings in the company network

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• OIKO-Bakhaus sàrl (50,00 %)

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OIKO-Bakhaus has been a member of the OIKOPOLIS network since its foundation in 2013. An unresolved matter of succession was the basis for this company’s integration into the network. Fränk Obertin, Luxembourg pioneer in organic bakery, wanted to give up the management of his long-established artisan bakery, but was unable to find a suitable candidate to take on the traditional enterprise. It was the acquisition of a 50% stake by OIKOPOLIS Participations that allowed the business to continue and to carry on its know-how and the expertise of its staff. Given its proximity to BIOGROS, the new company site also provides logistical benefits in terms of stocking the bakery shelves of NATURATA stores and of other commercial partners, as well as providing enough space to expand its range of products. Since 2018, OIKO-Bakhaus has been producing organic vegan desserts as well as all types of bread, even gluten-free, and traditional pastries.

Find out more about OIKO-Bakhaus (DE / FR)

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• Oiko-Consulting sàrl (50,00 %)

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The company Oiko-Consulting-GmbH was founded in 2000 by Georges Goedert, BIOGROS and NATURATA under the name “Agence Graphique et Marketing” (graphics and marketing agency). Its object was to provide marketing advice to companies, institutions and private individuals with a mainly ecological and/or social vocation and to help them implement ad hoc strategies. This also includes the design and production of suitable communication tools: online and offline, fairs, etc. The agency can also take care of inter-sectoral and coordination matters. It rents its headquarters, located in the OIKOPOLIS centre in Munsbach, from the company OIKOPOLIS Services, and is the principal provider of services dedicated to OIKOPOLIS initiatives and companies. However, the agency also works for many other clients with an ecological or social vocation.

At the end of 2012, the then partners unanimously decided to transfer the shares held by BIOGROS and NATURATA to OIKOPOLIS Participations.

Find out more about Oiko-Consulting (FR)

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• Hëpperdanger Wandenergie sàrl (32,90 %)

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Founded in 1995 by Jos and Änder Schanck together with three of their colleagues, the company Hëpperdanger Wandenergie sàrl became, in 1998, the majority shareholder in a public limited company (“société anonyme”) that is considered to be an excellent example of public-private partnership, Wandpark Hengischt SA, which constructs and operates wind turbines in the Luxembourg Ardennes.

At the request of the parent company OIKOPOLIS, the partners of Hëpperdanger Wandenergie sàrl transferred their shares to OIKOPOLIS Participations in two tranches, starting in 2012. From the the holding company’s point of view, the objective of acquiring the stake was to offset the consumption of fossil fuels by OIKOPOLIS companies.

Find out more about Hëpperdanger Wandenergie (DE)

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• Kass-Haff sàrl (30,00 %)

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The parent company OIKOPOLIS is a founder member of the company Kass-Haff sàrl, created in 2012. Its aim was to create and operate a farm that works according to Demeter principles and acts as a meeting place for townsfolk to discover holistic agriculture.

Aside from this concept, it was also the modern social model implemented at Kass-Haff that motivated the OIKOPOLIS group to acquire a stake in the company. Tom Kass and Anja Kass-Staudenmayer, the company’s initiators, opted for an SARL (limited liability company) as its legal form, an unusual move for farms, since it separates ownership and operator. This avoids the traditional form of farm inheritance and prevents pressure being exerted on the operator’s family, for example in situations where there is the often threatening constraint of having to “pay” siblings that have been left out of the inheritance.

At the same time, relocating the traditional farm from the centre of Rollingen/Mersch to the edge of the village has allowed it to establish new cooperative relationships all along the value chain. These relationships are assured by, among other things, agreements with the BIOG cooperative and NATURATA, which have expanded the famous Demeter farm with a dairy and a NATURATA shop. In addition, the model farm now has its own seminar and conference rooms. The aim is cultural mediation, a training course in organic and biodynamic management of farm operations with an impressive interaction of theory and practice.

Find out more about Kass-Haff (LU)

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• Naturata AG (20,30%)

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Since the start of the natural food movement in the 1970s, the German company Naturata AG has been producing and marketing high quality organic foods under the brand of the same name.

Within the NATURATA-International - Gemeinsam Handeln e.V. group, it is the only company to undertake this role. The others, like the Luxembourg organic farm shops, are limited to using the same trade name.

In 2018, after nearly 30 years of collaboration, OIKOPOLIS Participations made a capital increase in Naturata AG, going from a small, symbolic 1% to a healthy 20%.

Find out more about NATURATA AG (EN)

• Dudel-Magie sàrl (10,40%)

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In 2013, Marc and Ginette Emering, together with Joëlle Weimerskirch, founded an SARL on the “An Dudel” farm in Sprinkange. They called it “Dudel-Magie sàrl”, after the name of the farm, followed by the abbreviated names of the Emering couple that owned it (a play on words in French: “magie” means “magic”). The company object is the production and sale of fresh organic egg pasta, produced in a small farm factory in accordance with the operating principles of the “An Dudel” farm, as well as the fattening of chickens.

Its founders integrated the parent company OIKOPOLIS among their partners and even donated to it 10% of the shares (13 out of 125) in the new company. By making this donation, the founders of the family business sought to emphasize that the integration into the network of the OIKOPOLIS initiatives for marketing organic products is generally advantageous for all its members. Both new and existing members benefit. In fact, the differentiation in the value chain under the same roof benefits everyone – right down to the consumer, who is able to find new organic products made in the region. In the case of the fresh organic egg pasta from Sprinkange, there are even two series of new branded products, since Dudel-Magie produces for both the BIOG brand and its own brand, sold directly from the farm.

Just a year after its foundation, Dudel-Magie was awarded the Bio-Agrar-Präis at the sixth edition of the award under the slogan “Processors, distributors and organisations active in the field of organic farming”. At the award ceremony at the Foire Agricole agricultural show, the Minister in charge welcomed the collective project’s aim to “produce and sell at regional level where possible”. He particularly highlighted the fact that Dudel-Magie had even created new jobs by producing and marketing organic egg pasta.

Find out more about Dudel-Magie (DE, FR)

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• BIO-OVO SA (10,30 %)

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The public limited company (“société anonyme”) BIO-OVO SA was founded in 2012 in Buschdorf, Luxembourg. It originated from the company Houtmann-Odem sàrl, with which the OIKOPOLIS companies had been cooperating for many years, on several levels: the family business supplied organic eggs to BIOGROS and also packaged organic eggs from other producers for the BIOG brand. In 2012, on the initiative of Jos Houtmann, the regional packaging centre for organic eggs became a modern partnership.

Apart from Jos Houtmann and Marie-Gabrielle Houtmann-Odem, almost all the organic egg producers in the region, as well as the staff of the former egg packaging centre and a German partner company, are owners of the company. Together, these shareholders hold around 90% of the shares in this new public limited company. The remaining shares were subscribed for by OIKOPOLIS Participations on the founding of BIO-OVO.

Find out more about BIO-OVO (FR, DE)

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• BIO-Gäertnerei op der Schanz Altréier sàrl (10,00 %)

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In 2016, Bio-Gäertnerei op der Schanz was founded in Altréier, in order to create and manage a market garden that would apply the principles of organic farming and cooperate with the OIKOPOLIS companies. As supply partner, BIOGROS arranges the transport and packaging of the salads and vegetables, as well as processing them in its own artisanal kitchen (“Cuisine Artisanale”).

The principal partners and managers of the operation are Maggy and Carlo Demuth-Krecké. The famous Demeter market gardener Hugo Krijnse Locker and OIKOPOLIS Participations have taken a stake in the operation in order to provide their experience along with sales opportunities.

Find out more about the BIO-Gäertnerei (FR)


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• AGROTO GmbH (9,17 %)

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Founded in 2016, the company AGROTO GmbH has its head office in Ostseebad Grömitz. Its object is to develop, produce and distribute eco-friendly plant care products based on lengthy research by Benjamin Epler. He extensively studied the efficacy of biodynamic preparations and developed a particular method that allows these preparations to be offered not only to market gardeners, but also to amateur gardeners.

This innovative method and the products originating from it are extremely interesting for the NATURATA stores, and OIKOPOLIS Participations has therefore taken a stake in this initiative.

Find out more about AGROTO products (DE)

• Naturata eG (< 1%)

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A former cooperative by the name of Naturata eG, the company Naturata AG (see above) began by operating as a simple wholesaler on the German organic market, which was then still in its infancy. It wasn't until later that it began to develop products itself, which were often not yet available in an organic version. In 2003, its logistics services were outsourced and taken over by the cooperative that, today, bears the name NATURATA Logistik eG. Since then, the company Naturata AG has devoted itself to the development and marketing of Demeter quality or organic foods.

Find out more about NATURATA eG (EN)

• Bingenheimer Saatgut AG (< 1%)

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The public limited company (“société anonyme”), based in the north of Hesse, was established in 2001 on the initiative of a group of committed Demeter market gardeners, whose aim was to select vegetable seed to grow according to biodynamic principles. Unlike current practice, it is not hybrid varieties but fixed varieties that are cultivated, in the spirit of sustainable development. These grow naturally from fertile seeds, reproduce without human intervention and pass on all their hereditary characteristics from parent to offspring.

This allows the natural diversity of the varieties grown to be preserved and to strengthen seed multiplication, which is the company’s cultural mission. This also requires the development of forms of social economy between all the groups involved in the process of production and consumption.

Find out more about Bingenheimer Saatgut (EN)