Industry Spotlight- What are the latest PMP developments for the Walkers brand?

Matt Goddard is the wholesale trading director at PepsiCo


How have PMPs developed over the past 12 months in the wholesale channel?
People have been rediscovering their local retail store and the growth and momentum of PMPs continued last year. One of the really interesting things about the last 12 months is that PMPs grew in all three lockdowns as well as the intermitting periods in-between, so this longer-term growth is something we should expect to see continuing as restrictions relax.

Why do you think that was and how have you reacted to it?
We entered a recession over the past 12 months, so  and if you look back at previous recessions, people want value for money and quality, which means PMPs and a brand they trust and love. When you add those two things together then you start to create a bit of a perfect storm and this has all come together to create these new PMPs we’re putting into the channel. They launched in March and the clincher for us was that 88% of sharing purchases occur outside of the impulse channel (1). We then saw this as a massive opportunity. So this all came together and we wanted to create a bigger pack that offers the same value. The £2 PMP was born.

We’ve launched two on Doritos and one on Sensations, but not only that, we’re going to make sure that value offering is there for wholesalers by offering a £1.50 version as well. And that option will be there for the wholesalers to decide with their account mangers which they choose. We are also adding a 20% Extra Free to many of our bestselling £1 RRP PMPs snacks, including nine Walkers snacks SKUs, including Quavers, Wotsits, Monster Munch, Squares and French Fries.W

Wholesalers can’t do everything all of the time, so they need to make sure they stick to their core range and select the right NPD for their specific customer base

What has the initial reaction been from wholesalers to the £2 PMP?
The overall reaction so far has been brilliant. The popularity and obsession with £1 PMP has historically been great and super for the channel, but it also has an end point. Whether that is in five or 10 years’ time no one knows, but as category leaders, we’ve got to get that value progression going and so we’re taking that first first step as an industry. Of course, we’re not stepping away from £1 PMP – in fact, we’ve actually launched more this year than in 2020 – but we’re adding to this as an extra strategy to ensure PMPs continue to be sustainable.


What do you see the greatest challenge for wholesalers this year?

I think the greatest challenge for wholesale at the moment is managing the delicate balancing act of the evolving marketplace and adapting to these changes. For example, there is now a demand for multipacks in local stores. There is also the homogenisation of wholesalers, with B2B and B2C merging and dealing with all of the customer dynamics relating to this. So the challenge is understanding the customer needs of the different markets they’re now servicing. It’s a great opportunity and it means our toolbox neds to change. We have all the correct tools for wholesalers, we just have to make sure everyone has the correct ones in this changing landscape.

Any in depot activity planned in the coming months?
It will vary by wholesaler but all they are all doing their own thing and we’ll always be there to support them. We’ve also seen a bit uptake in recent months of supporting wholesalers with social media, by providing them with things such as GIFs for their Instagram accounts. The job of an account manager is evolving, and we’re there to support that change.

What advice would you give to wholesalers in order to grow in PMP and the crisps category?
PMP continues to grow so my advice would be to stick to a strong core range. The best sellers are pretty solidified and wholesalers can’t do everything all of the time, so they need to make sure they stick to their core range and select the right NPD for their specific customer base.

What would you like to see happen in wholesale over the next 12 months?
The focus and energy people have put in on data has been great. But it’s a missed opportunity unless you do something with it, so the big challenge is to now turn it into quality data and create differentiation from it.


(1) Missions: KWP, TH & AFH panels combined, value share. Pre-Covid: Jan-Feb 2020, actual share; Now – Mar-June 2020, KWP, TH & AFH panels, Trip, 52 w/e June 2020

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Paul Hill
Paul Hill is the Editor of Better Wholesaling. Paul can be found on Twitter on @BW_PaulHill, or can be contacted via paul.hill@newtrade.co.uk and 020 7689 3376.

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