Louis Dreyfus Company - LDC

ID: 185108011465

Louis Dreyfus Company is a global merchant company that is involved in agriculture, food processing, international shipping, and finance. It also owns and manages hedge funds, ocean vessels, develops and operates telecommunications infrastructures and is involved in real estate development, management and ownership.[1] Louis Dreyfus is one of the "ABCD" quartet of companies - alongside Archer Daniels Midland, Bunge and Cargill - that dominates world agricultural commodity trading.[2]

Dreyfus makes up about 10% of the world's agricultural product trade flows. They also are the world's largest cotton and rice trader.[3] They are also regarded by many as the second-largest player in the world's sugar market.[4]

The company Louis Dreyfus Holding BV has its headquarters in the World Trade Center Amsterdam in Amsterdam.[5]

Louis Dreyfus companies are present in more than 100 countries, with 72 offices. Major offices are located in Geneva, London, Beijing, Buenos Aires, Paris, São Paulo, Singapore, New York City and Connecticut.[6]

Aggregate average annual gross sales in recent years have exceeded $120 billion. The company employs more than 22,000 people globally at peak season.

In 1851, the company was founded in the Alsace region of France by Léopold Dreyfus, the 18-year-old son of a farmer from Sierentz, under the name of his father, Louis Dreyfus. Léopold purchased wheat from local farmers in Alsace and transported it to Basel in Switzerland, 13 kilometres (8 mi) away.[7] Léopold developed a fortune whilst still a teenager through cross border cereal trading. He rapidly diversified across shipping, weapons manufacturing, agriculture, oil and banking, thus establishing one of the wealthiest dynasties in Europe.[8] His descendants still own the company to this day. By the early 20th century, the Louis-Dreyfus family was described as one of the "five great fortunes of France". However, as a Jewish family during the Second World War much of the family assets were confiscated by the Vichy government and some members of the family fled to America.[9]

Leopold Louis-Dreyfus's great-grandson, Gérard Louis-Dreyfus, was chairman of Louis Dreyfus Energy Services, a subsidiary of the group involved in crude-oil trading, gas investments and infrastructure. Gérard is also the father of American actress Julia Louis-Dreyfus, the Emmy-winning star of Seinfeld. Another branch of the dynasty, based in Paris, was headed by Robert Louis-Dreyfus (who was also the CEO of Adidas) until his death in 2009. It is currently overseen by his widow, Russian-born Margarita Bogdanova Louis-Dreyfus.[10] A third branch of the family's business is headed by Philippe Louis-Dreyfus (born 1945) and is concerned primarily with offshore industrial activities and freight shipping operations.[11]

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