News You're Hired

schleich Appoints Stefan De Loecker as New CEO

schleich logo

Schleich, the German manufacturer of figurines and playsets, has just announced a new change to their executive team appointing Stefan De Loecker as the new CEO effective January 1, 2024.


Before joining Schleich, Stefan De Loecker was CEO of Beiersdorf and previously President of its emerging markets and has had a broad and long-standing career in FMCG, namely with Nestlé.


Dirk Engehausen, CEO of Schleich for more than eight years, left Schleich on 15 August 2023. After a transition period, he will join its Advisory Board.


“We are delighted to count on Stefan as the new CEO of Schleich. He has the experience to lead the next phase of growth fueled by brand and product innovation, and an effective organisation to sustain it”, says Luisa Delgado Chair of the Advisory Board. “We thank Dirk for his contributions to Schleich and for spearheading its internationalisation”. She concludes: “Schleich is a unique brand recognized for its distinct authentic figurines promoting children’s joyful storytelling through free play. We look forward to further unlocking its unique educational value through product and content innovation for the benefit of the business and society.”


Schleich is one of Germany’s largest toy manufacturers and a leading international brand of authentic animal figurines, igniting children’s joy of storytelling. Friedrich Schleich founded Schleich in Schwäbisch Gmünd in 1935. Today, the famous characters and sets made by the brand schleich, are sold in more than 60 countries and have become a beloved feature in children’s rooms around the world, sparking their imagination to run wild. As a global player with Swabian roots, Schleich now generates more than half of its turnover outside its core market Germany. In 2022, Schleich reached global sales of EUR 275 million, representing around 40 million animal figurines. Sustainability is a core commitment: As a first step, all characters will be recyclable by 2027. Schleich is also intensively researching recycled materials for the future production of its toys. In addition, Schleich will be optimising and certifying its characters and packaging to the standards of the Cradle to Cradle circular economy by the end of 2027 to ensure that resources are reused. The company is owned by Partners Group and Schleich employees.