Ivaylo Naydenov, General Manager of SCE Hub, spoke for the magazine Reminder about these topics, trends in the Serbian and world market, as well as the latest innovations Mondelēz has offered to our consumers.
New Mondelez Global Strategy was revealed recently. Can you share more with us?
After a nine-month strategic review, we have unveiled our new corporate purpose and strategic plan that will guide our actions in the years ahead and our new strategic plan will lead us to growth. Mondelez International will deliver a broader range of delicious, high-quality snacks that nourish life’s moments, made with sustainable ingredients and packaging that consumers can feel good about.
We know that Mondelez goal is to become a global leader in healthy snacks. Where are you now in terms of that?
Different products has its own positions in different moments for different people. That’s why we called our strategy “Snacking made right”. The right snack at the right time in the right way. We are constantly researching and adapting to consumers interest for snacking. We have some well-known and many years loved products that are now reformulated, for example with more fibre and also some new developed products, addressing consumers preferences. We do this without changing the taste, of course. For example, for Milka we have slightly modified the formula to meet consumer demand for a product free of additives such as colorings, preservatives and artificial flavors. Instead of the vanillin, which is generally used in the industry, we now use natural flavors for our Milka chocolate tablets base mass. Also, the design of Milka chocolate tablets was slightly redesigned recently. Both the foil and the logo have been redesigned to give the product a timeless, authentic look. The unmistakable taste of Milka chocolate is just as popular as it was before.
Has there been any changes in consumers’ behavior and preferences in Serbia and in the region lately and if so, of what kind?
All around the world the more holistic view of consumers’ snacking behaviors to sharpen brand positioning in clear demand spaces and the lines between meals and snacks are blurring. As our lives become more time compressed, snacking – those moments when you reach for a delicious bite in between meals – is on the rise. We were aware that with increasingly busy lifestyles, consumers are looking for convenient, bite-sized treats that won’t weigh them down. Due to the fact that modern life style dictates new life rhythm, the trend of having 5 meals a day is changing, the interest of consumers in the nutritional profile of the products they are consuming is raising, they are looking for the good nutritional balance including sugar, salt and fat as well as the right amount of calories. It is also about the responsibility of the brands they choose, looking for sustainable ingredients and certifications. And it’s about portion control, as this helps consumers to manage better their daily intake and plan for the day. People don’t want to have to choose between snacking and eating right. This is kind of cultural tension which provides a unique opportunity for our company in the years ahead. Although our consumers can choose for themselves how they want to live, food companies still have to take initiatives, feel the market. Our consumers have the awareness on what type of food they are choosing, and we as a company have to be provide the right information and educate the consumer, keep them well informed.
Serbian market was delighted with some new products recently. What it is? How will these products be different from existing ones from this category on the market?
What we for sure have is large portfolio that we play internationally and we let the consumer make the decision by selecting its own choice. Mondelez is constantly investing into R&D in order to bring new products that are empowered to address future trends and preferences. We are expanding the business with new products by tapping into new usage occasions and recruiting new consumer groups with whom we plan to be in close, constant contact. As of this autumn we are entering the market with our brand Halls, brand well known to consumers all around the globe and we are launching both segments, Gum & Candy. The bundle which we are launching should satisfy the consumer needs in our region, as consumers all over the globe love it. What they love with the candy is the unique taste which they claim is totally one of a kind, and the hard texture which provides a longer refreshing experience, the simple and straight forward design and the many flavors which consumers can choose. When it comes to gum we have completely new segment under Halls, but tests confirm that consumers absolutely love it, especially as the refreshment feeling stays very long, and that is achieved due to the new technology that we are using in the Gum production where a special center filled core is filled with crystals which are released over time. Mondelez has been present as a producer of our refreshment portfolio with various brands all over the globe and we have a very strong position. In terms of flavors in both in segments we have 2 mint/herb flavors per segment, and we are also raising interest in the fruity flavors and there are also 2 of it both in gum and in candy.