Mondelēz  admits it has “lost some swagger” as it focused too much on internal transformation to the detriment of investment in its brands.

Mondelēz is “regaining passion” for building “iconic brands” according to the company’s executive vice-president and president of North America, Glen Walter.

Speaking at Evercore ISI’s Virtual Consumer & Retail Summit yesterday (16 June), Walter said the Cadbury owner had been investing both in its brands and ecommerce business, the later an area where the company is “underrepresented”.

Walter explained: “You can engage with consumers whether it’s a recruitment tool or a convenience tool, [ecommerce] has been very helpful.”

He added: “We’re investing in search, we’re investing in digital, we’re investing in service, and we’re investing in the types of differentiated packages that consumers are looking for in ecommerce. We’ve nearly doubled the number of unique pure play ecommerce packs to the portfolio in lightning speed.”

Coronavirus and the consumer shift to digital has pushed ecommerce up the agenda at Mondelēz , with growth doubling this year. And this is a trend the company believes will extend beyond lockdown.

Walter explained: “If you subscribe to the phrase of never waste a crisis, this has provided a proof point for people that they can have a good shopping experience, they can get the brands they like, they show up to my home in a safe way and intact, and they can save themselves a trip or even look at a subscription.”

This is not the only way Mondelēz is adapting to the pandemic, it is also ensuring all its marketing is “pivoting very quickly” so its campaigns are relevant. That includes a focus on “being at home, eating more, more do it yourself,” Walter said.

Looking back to previous years, Walter admitted the company was too focused on internal transformation to the detriment of investment in brands.

“We were not investing in our brands at the fullest potential. When we’ve got multiple years of transformation we had lost quite a bit of our talent and frankly a bit of our swagger and the passion that had been behind these brands in the past,” he said.

However, now the business is focused on “fundamental core processes”. That includes “how we build our brands, how we connect with customers and consumers, how we execute in the marketplace, and how we bring our supply chain back to stability and predictability.”

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