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PepsiCo today announced the second year of its Nutrition Greenhouse incubator scheme, an initiative designed to discover and nurture breakthrough brands in the food and beverage sector.

pepsi incubator

Issuing an open call for entrepreneurs to apply, PepsiCo is seeking to identify up to ten emerging brands in the nutrition space with products aimed at European consumers.

The selected companies will receive €20,000 in funding as well as the opportunity to work alongside experts from some of PepsiCo’s leading brands including Quaker, Alvalle, Sunbites and Tropicana. Brands currently delivering sales of €5 million or less are invited to find out more.

In addition to the initial €20,000 grant, each of the entrepreneurs selected will benefit from a six-month mentorship programme, featuring one-on-one pairing with PepsiCo executives. At the end of the scheme, one winning company will be awarded a €100,000 prize to continue its expansion.

The initiative, which launched last year, has seen eight companies achieve estimated combined growth of over €10 million – a fourfold increase in sales over its duration. Brands which were selected last year included makers of insect snacks, seaweed protein and Nordic birch water.

Year two will include a broader focus on nutrition beyond health and wellness, towards brands that tap into key lifestyle trends, enable personal performance or are purpose-driven.

Juan Ignacio Amat, vice president of nutrition for PepsiCo Western Europe and Sub-Saharan Africa, said: “We are delighted to be returning with our Nutrition Greenhouse programme for a second year. Our overarching goal remains the same – to partner with the best and brightest food and beverage entrepreneurs in Europe and give them the opportunity to bring their products to the world on a global scale.


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Pepsi is putting images of two dead music icons on its cans this summer, reaching back once again to its pop culture glory days in an effort to boost sagging sales. Michael Jackson and Ray Charles will front limited-edition packaging along with Britney Spears, who isn’t exactly in her prime (although to be fair, her recently concluded four-year Las Vegas residency concert was considered a major hit).

Pepsi celebs

The cans continue the retro-heavy “Pepsi Generations” campaign that Pepsi kicked off earlier this year with a Super Bowl ad that included quick glimpses of classic Pepsi ads starring Spears and Jackson. A follow-up ad for Diet Pepsi included shots of Charles that harkened back to a 1990s-era spot when he sang “You got the right one baby” for the brand.

But putting the singers on cans ups the ante, while raising questions about much resonance the one-time mega stars have with younger consumers today.

“The first thing I thought was, ‘Oh, they must be going for the older folks’—because the younger kids are drinking a lot less soda these days,” says Kit Yarrow, a consumer psychologist and professor at Golden Gate University in San Francisco who studies millennial consumers.

But on the plus-side for Pepsi, “young people today kind of like the retro-chic stuff. Michael is iconic, Ray is iconic. And I guess by rubbing shoulders with them Pepsi becomes a little bit more iconic,” she adds. “It is calling out some of [Pepsi’s] shining moments, I suppose, and elevating the stature of the brand though association. But I don’t think that’s going to be enough.”

Read more at Ad Age:

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KeVita, acquired in late 2016 by PepsiCo, is launching its most ambitious advertising campaign since its founding in 2010.

The social media-focused “Alive Like You” campaign represents the probiotic beverages brand’s largest investment to date in overall media spend, media channels used, and branded content created, KeVita director of marketing Andrew Thomas tells Marketing Daily.

KeVita’s products — dubbed “living liquids” for marketing purposes — include sparkling probiotics, master brew kombucha tea, and vinegar tonics.

The creative, from agency of record Integer Group, seeks to “celebrate that KeVita’s products are bubbling with liveliness, just like our fans,” says Thomas.

The campaign kicked off with a series of five, 30-second videos of real brand fans engaging in their passions and telling their inspirational stories, including a professional ballerina (below), a surfer, a yoga instructor, a musician and a jam skater.

The videos, which have each drawn more than 300,000 views on YouTube since being posted in late January, are also featured on a campaign site — along with a user-generated content contest being launched today.

To enter the contest, fans are being asked to share about what makes them feel most alive, either uploading their stories on the campaign site or posting them on Instagram or Twitter with #AliveLikeYouContest, by April 19.

Three grand prize winners, chosen by the brand, will each receive $2,000 “to fulfill their passions.” The first 2,000 fans who enter will become honorary ambassadors and receive “Alive Like You” shirts.

“We hope that the videos will engage and inspire our fans to share their own stories,” says Thomas, who notes that the contributions will serve to reinforce “the spirit and lifestyles that personify KeVita’s brand ideals.”
KeVita will repurpose content gathered through the contest, including using favorite stories in future marketing efforts.

The campaign will also include targeted out-of-home advertising, digital advertising, influencer integrations, retail promotion and sampling events.

Ignited handled media and the website, Havas is handling events and Golin is doing PR.

Founded by nutritional consultant Chakra Earthsong and entrepreneur Bill Moses, KeVita continues to operate independently out of production and bottling facilities in Oxnard, Calif.

PepsiCo’s acquisition “has allowed us to expand our entire operation, while remaining true to our original recipes and continuing to operate with the entrepreneurial, creative spirit that is at the core of our brand,” according to Thomas.

from Media Post:

PepsiCo wants to rethink how and what consumers drink–and it has invented an entirely new system to give people a healthier alternative to soda. The company’s newest venture is centered on a 20-ounce reusable water bottle that comes with sets of flavor pods.

pepsi drinkfinity screenchow

The new product line, called Drinkfinity, is a clear reaction to consumers drinking less soda. Over the past 20 years, sales of non-diet soda have fallen by more than 25%. As a result, PepsiCo and its competitors have turned their attention to bottle water and other types of drinks–though the company’s executives prefer to frame the shift in their priorities as giving customers more choices rather than combating the decline of soda.

That’s where Drinkfinity comes in, as another healthy option in the company’s portfolio. The name is meant to indicate that there are infinite combinations of drinks you could make with the bottle and the flavor pods. The Drinkfinity team’s ultimate aspiration is that consumers go online, choose all the ingredients they want, and have personalized pods shipped to their door–a vision that reacts to several consumer trends, including on-demand services and healthy living.

For now, the brand, which launches today, is debuting 12 different types of pods, which have names like Mango Chia Flow and Pineapple Coconut Water Renew. To make yourself a White Peach Chill or a Mandarin Orange Charge, you fill up your Drinkfinity water bottle, unpeel a pod’s label, remove your bottle’s cap, and push the cap of the lid through a pointed plastic structure. This ruptures the dry storage area in the pod and releases the concentrated liquid, which pours into the container. Then you shake and drink. The bottle itself has a magnetic spot on its side to hold down the cap so it doesn’t hit you in the face as you guzzle. And you don’t have to use the pods constantly; you can also just use the bottle for, well, water.

Each pod features combinations of wet ingredients, mostly different fruit juices, and dry ingredients, like pieces of ginger, vitamins, lemongrass extracts, and even oats. The company says all the ingredients are natural and there are no artificial sweeteners. The pods, which contain two ounces of liquid, range from 30 to 80 calories each. With the variety of flavors and emphasis on trendy superfoods, Drinkfinity is primed to tap into the billion-dollar health and wellness market, and could potentially appeal to soda drinkers trying to kick the habit.

The system’s sustainability is one of the driving forces behind the design. To create Drinkfinity, PepsiCo had to rethink the supply chain, manufacturing, shipping, and even recycling. That resulted in the full life cycle of a single pod producing 40% fewer carbon emissions than the typical 20-ounce drink housed in a plastic bottle you’d buy at the supermarket. The pods also use 65% less plastic than these 20-ounce bottles. Whether or not PepsiCo succeeds in drawing customers, Drinkfinity offers an inside look at how a major beverage company rethinks its design and production systems to meet shifting consumer tastes.

[Photo: PepsiCo]


Vice president of global business innovation Hernan Marina first conceived of Drinkfinity in 2009, when the company was looking for a way to answer changing customer priorities around sustainability, health and wellness, customization, and choice. But instead of relying on the typical modes of development within a multinational corporation, which involve extension market research, focus groups, and a single product that’s honed to perfection before it’s launched internationally with a large marketing effort, PepsiCo decided to try something different.

from Fast Company:

Pepsi’s viral “Uncle Drew” ad campaign featuring NBA star Kyrie Irving is taking new form: a full-length movie slated for release June 29.

It remains to be seen just how much the Pepsi brand will be woven into the script, but a new preview offers some clues, such as a Pepsi sign at an outdoor basketball tournament.

The Uncle Drew campaign, which cast Irving as an old man who can seriously hoop, debuted in 2012 as a five-minute online video promoting Pepsi Max. As reported early last year, PepsiCo’s Creators League studio has been working with Temple Hill Entertainment to get the character on the big screen. Lionsgate’s Summit Entertainment is also involved.

The film stars Irving, along with NBA greats Shaquille O’Neal, Chris Webber and Reggie Miller, plus Nate Robinson, a former NBA player who spent time with teams including the Knicks, Celtics and Bulls. Former WNBA MVP Lisa Leslie is also in the movie, along with actors Milton “Lil Rel” Howery and Tiffany Haddish. Howery plays a character who convinces Uncle Drew to return to the court one last time for a streetball tournament in Harlem. The duo hit the road to reunite Drew’s old squad.

PepsiCo formed the Creators League unit in 2016 to serve as an internal production arm for scripted series, films, music recordings, reality shows and other content. Some of it is heavily branded, like Pepsi’s Super Bowl commercial earlier this month. But some content has little branding, such as a short documentary film called “The Rugby Boys of Memphis” that was backed by PepsiCo’s Gatorade and shown at the Tribeca Film Festival last year. The Creators League was also behind Pepsi’s widely mocked Kendall Jenner ad, which was pulled quickly last year amid criticism.

The Creator’s League was started by Brad Jakeman, PepsiCo’s former global beverage group president, with the aim of creating both branded content and unbranded content that could earn revenue to be poured back into marketing. Jakeman left the company late last year.