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Aalst’s Executive Team takes great pride in steering the company through more than a decade of growth and success. They oversee the day-to-day operations of the company with a proactive, focused approach to seizing opportunities and overcoming challenges. They ensure that Aalst and all of its employees are committed to business success through the attainment of high quality products and professional service.


Combining decades of experience in the food & service industry, each and every one them brings passion and dedication to chocolate manufacturing to the fore. 



Cargill Cocoa & Chocolate Asia Pacific , Managing Director


Mrs Francesca Kleemans is the Managing Director for Cargill Cocoa & Chocolate Asia Pacific and has worked in the cocoa and chocolate industry for almost two decades.

In her previous role with Cargill, Francesca was the Global Director for the cocoa product lines and was responsible for driving global growth through optimizing capabilities and generating synergies for customers. Francesca is known for her play-to-win mindset and her passion to create differentiated value that helps customers thrive. Building on a foundation of uncompromising product quality, she believes that the future of cocoa and chocolate in Asia is about sensory innovation to excite consumers and robust sustainability to enable farmers for generations to come.

Originally from Italy, Francesca relocated to Singapore in 2020 with her husband and three children. Together, they are enjoying Singapore’s melting pot of people and food flavors.



Aalst Chocolate, Founder & Senior Advisor.


Mr Richard Lee has over 20 years experience in cocoa and chocolate production.


Prior to setting up Aalst Chocolate, Richard was the business development director for a leading chocolate manufacturer in Asia and was the country representative for a leading Japanese F&B business in Myanmar.


Aalst Chocolate, Co-Founder & Senior Advisor.


Miss Connie Kwan has over 18 years of experience in sales, marketing and distribution.


Prior to setting up Aalst Chocolate, Connie was the Managing Director of Ty Beanie Babies Singapore from 1999 to 2001. In 2001 she founded Foodlever Inc, a company specialising in food ingredients trading, which created the initial distribution platform for Aalst Chocolate.

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