Sunday, May 27th, 2012

Kraft Shareholders Approve Snack Foods Business Label

Failure to Grasp How Well-Conceived Labels Become Growth Assets

Washington Post

Kraft Foods Inc. says shareholders approved the name "Mondelez" for its new global snack food business, which may put to rest the snickering that initially greeted the name.

The Northfield, Ill.-based company said Wednesday the name was approved by more than 90 percent of shareholders who cast a vote.

The name — pronounced "mon-dah-LEEZ" — will take effect when the company officially splits into two publicly traded companies later this year. Mondelez International Inc. will be home to global brands including Oreo, Cadbury and Nabisco.

The North American grocery business will continue to carry the name Kraft and include Velveeta, Miracle Whip and Oscar Mayer.

Kraft on Wednesday also unveiled the logo for Mondelez, which is the name in a custom-made purple font with red accents on either side.

When the name was first unveiled in March, Kraft carefully explained that it was an amalgamation of the Latin word for "world" and an interpretation of the word "delicious." It nevertheless became a punch line in the media, with the New York Post headline reading "MONDEWHAAAAT?" and Crain's Chicago Business suggesting it bore resemblance to a Russian term for a sexual act.

Despite the mockery, Mondelez was the result of a four-month process that started in November when Kraft held an in-house contest to name the new company.

The top candidates from a list of 1,700 entries were vetted with consumers in 28 different languages to ensure they didn't have any negative connotations.

The colors in Kraft's current logo have specific names, including "zesty" (greenish yellow), "indulgent" (pink), "sweet" (purple) and "delicious" (red). But the company said the red and purple used in the Mondelez logo don't have any special names yet.

"Perhaps I see another employee naming contest in the making," said Michael Mitchell, a Kraft spokesman.

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