Mondelēz Malaysia is planning its next phase of growth to unlock new opportunities in the millennial consumer segment. The company said amidst the relatively soft retail market, it sees continued potential in the snacking sector driven by the millennial generation of customers.
Chocolate and confectionery emerged as a growing category in the snacking industry. Last year, the category accounted for 38.1% of the overall snacks and confectionery sales in Malaysia, while recording the highest value growth rate compared to other categories like biscuits and salty snack.
“The millennials today make up almost half of the population. They bring to the market a new level of spending power, snacking behaviour and unique taste preference. Continuing our ambition to accelerate growth and create delicious moments of joy for Malaysians, we need to keep up with our consumers and respond to their evolving needs,” Pete Bingeman, chief executive officer of Mondelēz Malaysia said.
Beyond merely implementing pricing and packaging strategy, the company is also introducing new market entrants specifically to address the taste profile of millennials and the increasing adoption of a healthier lifestyle.
Latest in the company’s new product pipeline which entered the Malaysian retail market in mid-April is “Halls XS”, a mini-size and sugar-free candy that targets urban working consumers aged 25-34. Besides providing consumers with a healthier option, “Halls XS” also responds to their busy daily lifestyles by offering them an intense cooling freshness they need to get them back to their daily activities.
The recent Cadbury 5 Star launch which took place not long after the introduction of “Halls XS” is a key proof to the brand’s ongoing strategy to capture opportunities in the impulse chocolate bar segment and meet the evolving consumer’s taste.
“We believe the launch of Cadbury 5 Star and Halls XS will strengthen our category leadership and spur a sustained growth for our business in Malaysia. In fact, we have identified the chocolate and confectionery category as one of our growth catalysts,” Bingeman added.
He explained innovation is one of several levers driving the success of the business and sustaining the category leadership.
By broadening our range to cater to consumers across all palate and preference, we are able to unlock new customers and reap the untapped opportunities in categories that matter to our business.
The company also said despite the volatile macroeconomic environment, 2015 proved to be a challenging but positive year for Mondelēz Malaysia. Following the fully recovery from a nationwide Halal dispute that impacted one of its brands, the company maintained its strong presence in Malaysia with four operating bases, 1,600 employees and category leadership in sweet and savoury snacks.
The company also has a broader plan to cater to consumers with healthier options in mind. These include ongoing efforts to reduce sugar consumption, small-sized snacks and newer products slated to be launched later in the year.
Meanwhile it also teamed up with MasterChef Malaysia’s Brian Chen and social enterprise MakanLah to help children understand their bodies and importance of good nutritional habits and an active lifestyle. Called the Eating Smart Assembly programme, it was held at Sekolah Kebangsaan Puchong Batu 14 (SK Puchong), Selangor. It is the second programme under Mondelez’s flagship corporate social responsibility initiative, Joy Schools, supported by the Ministry of Education Malaysia.