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Capitalizing on Growth as Mondelēz Expands

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Mondelēz International, the company behind Oreo, plans to boost its investment in start-ups through its venture capital arm, SnackFutures. The aim is to support disruptive food companies, prioritize well-being in the snacking industry, and invest in new technologies. With the goal of doubling its portfolio by 2030, Mondelēz hopes to secure long-term growth and evolve its product lineup. Independent retail store owners can benefit from stocking up on these emerging brands to stay ahead of evolving consumer preferences and tap into the growth potential they offer.

Mondelēz International, the global snacking giant known for producing Oreo cookies, has recognized the importance of start-ups in driving its future growth. To fuel this ambition, the company is increasing its investment in start-up companies through its venture capital arm, SnackFutures.

SnackFutures, although existing for nearly five years, has so far made only seven investments. However, Richie Gray, the vice president of Mondelēz who leads SnackFutures, states that the company is now more serious than ever about scouting, identifying, and investing in start-ups. Mondelēz understands that these disruptive upstarts may only capture a small market share initially but present a great opportunity for future growth.

The goal for SnackFutures is to double its current portfolio by the end of the decade, ultimately leading to Mondelēz investing in approximately 1% of the deals it reviews. Mondelēz envisions SnackFutures as a significant part of its long-term 2030 vision, which focuses on boosting growth and evolving its product portfolio to generate 90% of revenue from chocolate and biscuits. Independent retail store owners who stock these emerging brands can benefit from this forward-thinking strategy, capitalizing on the growth potential presented by these unique products.

SnackFutures invests in start-ups with single-digit growth rates and around $20 million in net sales, viewing them as partners who can benefit from MondelÄ“z’s expertise in marketing, R&D, manufacturing, retail connections, and supply chain. Previous investments include companies like Torr FoodTech, which developed innovative ways to reduce sugar in snacks, and Eastern Standard Provisions, a direct-to-consumer provider of all-natural hand-twisted pretzels.

SnackFutures’ investments in start-ups also serve as a pipeline for potential acquisitions by MondelÄ“z. New additions must have growth rates significantly higher than MondelÄ“z’s current rate and generate hundreds of millions of dollars in annual sales. The aim is to invest in these companies early, nurturing them until they reach a scale where an acquisition would make a difference for MondelÄ“z, effectively becoming a feeder for their M&A strategy.

Independent retail store owners can take advantage of this opportunity by stocking up on these emerging brands, positioning themselves to tap into evolving consumer preferences and capitalizing on the growth potential these start-ups offer. By staying ahead of the curve and offering unique, innovative products, independent retailers can attract customers looking for the latest trends and contribute to their own long-term success.

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