Grenade: From Carb Killa, To Mondelez Winner. What Went Right?


Following the Mondelez’ acquisition of Grenade on the 22nd March for an estimated £200milion, Just Food’s Andy Coyne interviewed our very own Hamish Renton to ask about what he thinks this means for the future of the growing health snack category.

Turning over £51.6m in 2019 (Companies House, 2019), Grenade is one of the biggest high-protein and healthy snack bars available in the current UK market, offering an array of delicious flavours to replace high-sugar, low-nutrition snacks. Made and founded by Carb Killa, Lion later bought the company in 2017 and have since reaped the rewards of the product’s rising popularity.

Emerging before Covid-19, health-conscious consumer snack choices have been further propelled by the events of the last year. Andy Coyne makes an insightful point that Mondelez are likely to also be transitioning into health products in response to the new government guidelines for high fat, sugar and salt contents in grocery products.

This pivot into the health space by Mondelez is further supported by their earlier purchase of Hu Master Holdings in January, a “better” chocolate and snacks business specialising in the manufacture of vegan and chocolate bars suited for paleo diets as well as their possession of a Perfect Snacks chilled nutrition bar majority share.

Whilst stylistically, the branding might suggest that Grenade bars are targeting frequent gym-goers only, co-founder Alan Barratt states the opposite is true; Grenade bars are for any consumer looking for a healthier snack alternative which seems to be a major selling point for confectionery brands who want to widen their target audience. This popularity doesn’t stop at UK retail customers either, Grenade exports to over 50 countries, 25% of sales coming directly from e-commerce.

Andy Coyne quotes Hamish in his article suggesting that offering a variety of snacks is an integral part of the Mondelez plan. “Mondelez realises the tide is turning on its core confectionery business and it needed to clamber onto other platforms to get growth. It was unlikely to get Cadbury into protein but maybe it can do some ‘mash-ups’ with Cadbury’s chocolate”.

Hamish goes on to praise the product pricing, comparing it to competitors as being “well above inflation. It’s sort of defying gravity. If you look at products in this area, a lot are around the quid mark.” There’s also a lot to be said for Grenade’s distribution not limited to a particular channel, as well as it’s innovative flavours “with things like cookie dough and peanut butter. It has got more right than wrong on innovation”

For more of Hamish’s thoughts on the success of the brand, read Coyne’s original article Has Mondelez Boosted Health Of Snacks Portfolio With Grenade?

If you’d like to talk directly to Hamish or any of the team at HRA Global about how your brand could be the next Grenade, contact us on [email protected].

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