“There is a lot more potential for confectionery to grow and ultimately drive total channel growth”

Mondelez World Travel Retail is Platinum Sponsor of this year’s ACI EUROPE Airport Commercial & Retail Conference & Exhibition. Ahead of the event, Jaya Singh, Managing Director, Mondelez World Travel Retail, spoke to Ross Falconer.

The confectionery category is among the most dynamic in travel retail. As consumer profiles change, it certainly has the potential to keep the channel relevant to ‘next-gen’ travellers, by providing distinction in the retail experience through personalisation, sense of place and gifting.

Jaya Singh, Managing Director, Mondelez World Travel Retail: “In addition to Oreo’s fantastic growth, after implementing our dedicated biscuit strategy in 2018, we saw a robust double-digit-increase in net revenue from biscuits, while our Milka Biscuit Collection sales more than doubled. The evidence is clear – biscuits can be a strong driver for growth.”

“Just looking at confectionery conversion rates and the category’s stability, there is a lot more potential for confectionery to grow and ultimately drive total channel growth – if it is given sufficient space with the right level of visibility and high-profile placements,” says Jaya Singh, Managing Director, Mondelez World Travel Retail. “While the amount of space given to confectionery has increased over the years, it is still under-represented compared to other categories. This year’s chocolate innovations built on our shopper insights will seize the opportunities in the gifting and sharing segments through secondary placements. The new Toblerone Tiny Milk Bag (120g) offers an easy and affordable last-minute gift option, in a format that leverages on cash till placements.”

When it comes to distinction, travel retail exclusives can offer the ideal differentiating factor. “For travellers, they tick the box of picking up a gift or a memento that is unique to their travels. From a retailer and landlord perspective, travel retail exclusives help to give our channel a point of differentiation and drive sales, generate footfall and expand opportunities for purchases.”

Mondelez WTR has seen great success with such exclusives, leveraging the personalisation trend with products like Toblerone Message bars and Oreo Message boxes, connecting with travellers emotionally through nostalgic offerings like the Cadbury Heritage box, and creating a ‘sense of place’ with the Toblerone destination sleeves.

Following the announcement of Mondelez WTR’s roadmap to establish the biscuits subcategory, it has launched two flavour combinations with Oreo that are unique to the channel. Oreo has experienced major growth, with sales tripling since the brand’s travel retail introduction in 2012. “This has illustrated the opportunity presented by biscuits and encouraged the subsequent launch of Chips Ahoy and Milka biscuits,” Singh explains. “With our Biscuit Bakery umbrella marketing concept, we are working towards signposting the biscuits category and driving incremental revenue and growth for the channel – for retailers and landlords alike. Looking ahead, we are excited to see our portfolio expand with the launch of Cadbury biscuits in 2019.”

At its activation in Madrid Barajas Airport, Mondelez WTR established ‘biscuit fun zones’, inviting shoppers to step into a Biscuit Bakery environment and discover an interactive game, ‘Which biscuit are you?’. “The game identified their ‘biscuit personality’, with the help of a rolling pin. Using the digital engagement tools provided, customers could then post their personality on social media and sample their chosen biscuit in-store.”

Mondelez WTR’s studies reveal that biscuits are growing at four times the rate of chocolate, and 26% of potential shoppers who do not otherwise buy confectionery products in travel retail are willing to purchase biscuits.

Biscuit Bakery is a concept introduced by Mondelez World Travel Retail, signposting the biscuits category in-store and bringing together the various biscuit ranges from its brand portfolio.

Mondelez WTR is also looking at unlocking opportunities beyond the category, deploying cross-category initiatives and alternative placements, such as the cash till areas. “Purchase in the checkout area is impulsive and, as such, perfect for impulsive products, like confectionery,” says Singh. “We are already seeing fantastic results by optimising this space with confectionery, for example with Cadbury and Toblerone items with Qatar Duty Free.”

He adds that one of the biggest opportunities lies in cooperation. “By continuing to strengthen our partnerships with retailers and landlords and by inviting other partners – like technology companies and digital solution providers – to the table, we will be able to find solutions to the industry’s challenges together. Partnerships are key to securing sustainable growth for the channel.”

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