Mondelēz CEO confident about the future as the snacking giant reaffirms 2019 outlook

OreoMondelēz chairman and CEO Dirk Van de Put has reiterated the company’s mission to lead the future of the $1.2 trillion snacking industry.

On Tuesday, the multinational giant presented .its 2019 financial outlook and long-term growth targets at the 2019 Consumer Analyst Group of New York (CAGNY) conference.

Van de Put, together with CFO Luca Zaramella, discussed the company’s update on growth strategy which was introduced during Investor Day in September 2018.

“We have a unique combination of structural advantages and a strategic plan that positions us to lead the future of snacking. I’m encouraged by early results as we implement our new strategy, which enabled us to meet or exceed our financial commitments in 2018,” said Van de Put.

“We have entered 2019 with strong momentum, a new commercial structure that is closer to the consumer and clear investment priorities to accelerate growth. Our exceptional people are focused on executing across our three strategic priorities: accelerating growth by becoming consumer-centric in everything we do, driving operational excellence in all areas of our business and building a winning growth culture.”

Van de Put said the food business’ strategy includes leadership positions in high growth categories; powerful global brands; having a global footprint; a strong value-chain and a committed group of employees.

He reiterated Mondelēz’ strategic plan to accelerate growth within the business by adopting a new, more consumer-centric commercial approach that aims to increase demand for its products; deliver operational excellence across the value chain and build a winning growth culture in which local commercial teams are aligned in mission, approach and incentives.

“Our financial results in 2018 demonstrate the power of our portfolio and operational capabilities. We are pleased with our momentum and we enter 2019 focused on executing on our new strategic plan and financial targets. We continue to expect an acceleration of top-line growth, productivity gains and strong free cash flow generation in the years ahead,” said Zaramella.

The multinational food company targets achieving Organic Net Revenue growth of over 3 per cent; high-single digit Adjusted EPS growth at constant currency; Free Cash Flow of $3 billion plus and dividend growth outpacing Adjusted EPS growth.

Snacking giant stockpiles for Brexit

Across the pond in Europe, the snacking giant is preparing itself for a ‘soft’ Brexit, hoping that British and European lawmakers can come to an agreement.

“Roughly, we’re expecting interruptions to product flow for three to four weeks,” Van de Put told Reuters on Tuesday on the sidelines of the CAGNY conference.

Mondelēz has increased warehousing and transportation capacity in the UK, and been stockpiling all its European-made products, which include BelVita biscuits and Milka chocolate, Van de Put said.

He said there is no plans to raise prices for these products, but that a serious devaluation of the British pound could make European goods very expensive.

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