Frito-Lay finding way through brand building, innovation

by Eric Schroeder
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BOSTON — Brand building and innovation — supported by what the company calls “world-class execution” — have Frito-Lay North America at the top of the consumer packaged goods landscape in North America.

In a Sept. 3 presentation at the Barclays Back to School Conference in Boston, Tom Greco, president of F.L.N.A., identified the company’s Lay’s Do Us A Flavor campaign as an “overwhelming success story” in terms of brand building.

“Last year we thought we’d made it big with 4 million entries in the U.S.,” Mr. Greco said of the Lay’s campaign. “And in 2014 we had over 14 million consumers submit for the next new flavor of Lay’s. Our current campaign is now in full swing, and in the most recent I.R.I. period ending Aug. 10, Lay’s scans were up 9%.”

New products also have been a key to success, and Mr. Greco said innovation contribution to growth has accelerated in recent years at Frito-Lay. In 2013, retail sales of Tostitos Cantina exceeded $100 million, making it the No. 1 savory snack on the I.R.I. Pacesetters list. This year, F.L.N.A. launched Tostitos Fajita Scoops, Tostitos Queso Blanco Dip, Lay’s Kettle Lattice Cut, Rold Gold Pretzel Thins and the Doritos Bold Flavor experiment, all of which have exceeded expectations, Mr. Greco said.

He noted F.L.N.A. also is innovating in macro snacks.

“In 2014 we launched our Ready to Go initiative in the cookie/cracker aisle,” Mr. Greco said. “This includes Grandma’s Cookies and Munchies Crackers. This fall our customers have been very excited to hear our 2015 lineup in cookies and crackers.”

Mr. Greco said he believes the productivity opportunity at F.L.N.A. is “significant.”

“Our productivity agenda pursues cost reduction and capability-building initiatives to deliver results,” he said. “Within supply chain we continue to expand G.E.S. (Global Enterprise System). By the end of 2014 we'll have six sites in play. G.E.S. continues to be a huge unlock for us, enabling more s.k.u. (stock-keeping unit) capacity with fewer facilities while lowering inventory levels. The exciting part about G.E.S. is that it is both a productivity generator and a growth enabler.

“In addition, we’re leveraging automation. This includes automating packaging, case picking and fork lift transportation. Productivity allows us to invest in our growth. Frito-Lay remains focused on driving growth and productivity to ensure leadership across the North American c.p.g. landscape.”
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READER COMMENTS (1)

By Samuel Hall 9/4/2014 8:09:21 PM
I am surprised that Frito has not taken advantage of a new technology for producing baked stackable snack chips, a STAX chip that is baked and with less than half the fat of STAX.