Campbell's 4 Strategies for Growth

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Campbell's 4 Strategies for Growth

By Jamie Grill-Goodman - 07/27/2016
At its annual Investor Meeting, Campbell Soup Company outlined plans to build its digital and e-commerce; elevate transparency, diversify its health portfolio and expand in developing markets.

“Over the last five years, we've taken a number of bold steps to reposition the company for not just profitable, but sustainable growth," commented president and CEO Denise Morrison. "Our progress has been methodical. We’ve improved our company and shifted our center of gravity. But we have higher aspirations for the food we make, the role we play in people’s lives and improving our growth trajectory. That’s why it’s necessary to continue to relentlessly improve ourselves, our food, our business and our culture to further differentiate Campbell and to forge a meaningful and lasting place in the lives of new generations of consumers.”

Campbell’s plans to strengthen business through four strategic imperatives:

1. Elevate trust through real food, transparency and sustainability

Mark Alexander, president - Americas Simple Meals and Beverages, discussed a fundamental shift in how the company thinks about its food and the way it operates. Campbell has developed a scorecard called Campbell’s Real Food Index to track progress against its ingredient commitments, such as plans to remove artificial colors and flavors from its North American products by the end of 2018. The Index can be found on
Campbell also said it will use only antibiotic-free chicken in its products, a shift that will be implemented over the next few years.

2. Build digital and e-commerce capabilities

The company has shifted advertising spend to digital and mobile platforms. In fiscal 2016, nearly 40 percent of Campbell’s advertising dollars were spent on digital compared to 19 percent in fiscal 2015.

3. Continue to diversify Campbell’s portfolio in health and well-being with fresh, organic and healthful foods

The company discussed expanding its offerings in the faster-growing health and well-being space with a focus on key growth areas such as packaged fresh innovation and expanding organic and clean label offerings in center store.

Jeff Dunn, president - Campbell Fresh, outlined plans to drive growth in the division’s core businesses in produce and deli with juices, dressings, soups and salsa, as well as expand into new parts of the store.

Campbell is investing in a rapid innovation process to develop new Campbell Fresh products with the speed and flexibility of a startup. The first product from this effort, Bolthouse Farms Plant Protein Milk, is a non-dairy milk. Developed in a few short months, it is designed to tap into the alternative milks that have transformed the dairy category over the past few years. Bolthouse Farms Plant Protein Milk is made with 100 percent pea protein and will launch in mid-fiscal 2017 in the dairy section of the grocery store.

4. Expand Campbell’s presence in developing markets.

Campbell's seeks to capture a bigger piece of the growing snacks market by expanding its brand footprint across faster-growing channels and geographies, particularly in Asia. The Global Biscuits and Snacks division will aim to increase the frequency and penetration of its iconic brands in their home markets - Goldfish in the U.S., Kjeldsens in China and Tim Tam in Australia - while introducing and expanding into new geographies.

In China, Campbell intends to increase marketing efforts behind its Kjeldsens brand in its key markets of Shanghai and Guangdong province while expanding its distribution in key regions in the East, and adding distributors in the South. The company plans to build its e-commerce capabilities in China to extend the Kjeldsens brand of butter cookies as well as to launch Tim Tam biscuits and Goldfish snack crackers.

In the U.S., the company will continue to support the momentum of the Goldfish cracker business by building on the launch of Goldfish Made with Organic Wheat crackers, and to extend the national roll out ofTim Tam biscuits nationwide. The company plans to expand its Pepperidge Farm premium breads and rolls into additional West Coast markets, following the first Western U.S. launch of its bakery products in the Phoenix, Arizona, market earlier this year.