Gladmat AS, the company behind the Gladmat food festival in the Norwegian city of Stavanger, is close to bankruptcy. The company was facing two choices: to file for bankruptcy or try and come up with the funds required to stage the festival.
The problems began for the annual festival in 2011 when its organisers were forced to abandon it part way through because of the 22 July attacks. This caused problems for organisers and those exhibiting, many of whom did not return the following year.
At one stage, Gladmat asked for financial help from shareholders in order to ensure the festival could continue. Their pleas were answered when the Stavanger municipality increased the grant they award annually from NOK 700,000 to NOK 1.4m ensuring that it will go on for at least another year.
Municipality business manager Svein Arild Holme described the event as very important for Stavanger as it contributes towards the number of visitors to the city and therefore the turnover of other businesses in the city. He went on to say that food is also one of Stavanger’s main profile areas, and food production is important politically for the region.