Subsidiary Companies



Suleyot Ltd

Frankie Foods Ltd

Poppin Foods Ltd

Wimpy Overseas Ltd

The origins of Zippy Franchises Ltd can be traced to 14 October 1964 when Suleyot Ltd, the former name of Zippy Franchises Ltd, was incorporated listing in its Memorandum of Association the following objectives:

To carry on business as caterers, proprietors of hotels, restaurants, and tea rooms, licensed victuallers, brewers malters, wine and spirit merchants, distillers, mineral and aerated water manufacturers and importers, bakers, confectioners, pastry-cooks, sweet manufacturers, tobacconists, ice cream manufacturers, meat salesmen, pork butchers, fishmongers, fruiters, greengrocers, dairymen, gardeners, farmers, game and poultry dealers., corn dealers, food and provision dealers, cold storage depository proprietors, garage, cab, coach and omnibus proprietors, carriers, metal and alloy makers, refiners and workers, engineers, electricians, joiners, furniture makers and woodworkers, upholsterers, French polishers, builders, painters and decorators, builders merchants, ironmongers and hardware dealers, tailors, clothiers, general outfitters and general store keepers etc. etc.

Four directors were appointed at incorporation two of whom were Brian Lawson Salmon and Julian Salmon. Julian at this time was joint Managing Director of J. Lyons & Co. and Brian a main board Director. There are no records to show that Suleyot Ltd ever traded nor was it a subsidiary of Lyons. It was probably a 'shelf' company acquired for some planned business development with registered offices at 6 Surrey Street, Strand, London. This appears to have been the case because on 8 February 1965 Suleyot Ltd increased its share capital to £99,900 and on the 26 February changed its name to Frankie Foods Ltd. The majority of the capital was held by a subsidiary of J. Lyons, Microtherm Ltd with the balance held by two venture capitalists, Bentworth Securities Ltd (London) and Foseco Holdings AG (Zurich). The new objectives of Frankie Foods Ltd was to develop and hold licences, patents, patent rights, trade marks and other concessions and privileges and to advise and give technical assistance to the production of foodstuffs and operation of hotels. The company was in effect a consultancy. On 16 November 1965 nearly 12,000 shares were allotted to Wimpy International Inc (Chicago) another Lyons subsidiary and on 23 November the company changed its name again, this time to Poppin Foods Ltd. On 7 February 1972, Poppin Foods Ltd became Zippy Franchises Ltd but in August 1977 the company changed its name again to Wimpy Overseas Ltd. During this period, through wholly owned Lyons subsidiaries, it was owned by J. Lyons & Co. The Wimpy business was sold in December 1976 to United Biscuits following which (1 July 1977) Wimpy Overseas Ltd (formally Zippy) acquired from Pleasure Foods International Ltd (part of the Wimpy operation) that part of Pleasure Foods and its subsidiaries which was concerned with the franchising and supply of foods and services to catering businesses worldwide. It was a very small operation employing no more than about 7 persons. Finally Wimpy Overseas Ltd became Montrap Ltd on 16 August 1990.

Why Zippy? It is not known why the name Zippy Franchises Ltd was chosen. However, it is known that Zippy was a form of brick ice cream which had been sliced and prepared for wafer portions. It had been developed at Cadby Hall and patented, by its inventor, Harold Boon. It was an entirely new process for treating and wrapping ice cream as it emerged from the freezer and in its time was a break-through in the production of ice cream. Zippy reached the retailer in cartons containing individual rectangular portions, each enclosed in a cardboard collar so that it could be placed between two wafers and the wrapping removed without anyone having to touch the ice cream. This patented process would have been managed by the company which Lyons had originally established as Frankie Foods Ltd and it is quite possible that its interest at that time might have caused the company to chose Zippy Franchises Ltd in fear that a competitor might exploit the name of Zippy themselves


 © Peter Bird 2004