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Guillaume Simon Touches on Innovation and Adaptability in the Confectionery Industry

Sweets are part of everyone’s life. We love candy. The confectionery industry in the U.S. has managed to stay relevant even after major global events like the pandemic. In this episode, we have Guillaume Simon, Chief Growth Officer at Ferrara Candy Company, a Ferrero-affiliated company. We talked to him about all things candy. His expertise and insights about innovation and strategies are spot on. Don’t miss out on this episode to learn more about what is coming for the confectionery industry, from innovation all the way to e-commerce.


Guillaume Simon


  • Confectionery Industry: Guillaume’s global experience.
  • Planning for brand growth.
  • Strategy beyond marketing, your strategy should include all parts of your business.
  • The two kinds of Innovation at Ferrara.
  • E-commerce growth and its importance.
  • FMCG brands are able to change the lines


“Probably the most notable thing in the US is the launch of Kinder, which is, as you mentioned it, fortunately, a big success. So, we have built here the, how would I say, the foundation of something that has brought a new way of eating chocolate in the US I think.”

“So it goes through planning. Planning is a part of it. So not only short-term planning but also midterm, and long-term planning, because we know that to achieve, our ambition, we need to be able to plan it.”

“Strategy is one but you can imagine, it has an impact on different functions, sales, marketing, and HR, because we need also to have the capabilities to build, the capabilities to deliver this growth. So, you act in a lot of different areas, but I would say the common point is that you prepare your focus on mid-term, long-term growth, and not only short-term growth.”

“The transformation or innovation can take five years, 10 years, but for row, some innovations, you know, that are in the market right now have been developed over 20 years, right? When you have a real technological barrier, or you want to build a real technological barrier when it requires a change in the way you manufacture the product, when it required a big investment in new technology when it requires a long research pass.”

“We know that time has a value when you develop innovation, in particular when it’s about fine tuning and making sure that your innovation meets the needs of the consumer or create a new need in the market.”

“E-commerce is growing for sure. It’s still pretty small because for e-commerce, for impulse needs to be managed differently. And because impulse works with visibility in the store, you need to create the same visibility in e-commerce.”

“If you are just present in e-commerce, it’s not enough, right? You need to create visibility in e-commerce. And there is a specific strategy for that.”

“I think what makes a difference in FMCG markets is the capacity to move the lines. So, to bring to the market projects, ideas, innovation that really can transform the way the consumer behaves.”

“It requires to be transformational with the speed it requires to win every day. And this balance, which is not hard to achieve, is what, for me, makes the difference in the end.”

Brands and Globalization: How to Conquer New Markets

Globalization is a part of our daily lives. We live in a globalized world. But for brands, it can be hard to arrive at a new location especially if it is across the world. Alexandre Ronsin, our episode’s guest, has not only done this in East Asian countries but explained to us what he’s learned from the experience. Along with our host, Francisco Serrano, they discussed globalization, culture adaptation, and brand identity. Listen to hear their valuable insights.


Alexandre Ronsin


  • From France to Mexico all the way around the globe.
  • Marketing globalization in CPGs.
  • Similarities and differences in consuming patterns around the world.
  • Becoming a local brand, without losing your uniqueness.
  • Optimization for the benefit of your consumer.
  • There’s no secret recipe, make your own recipe.


“So I’ve been traveling a bit across the globe seeing different, perspectives, but also a lot of commonalities between geographies. You know, now we believe that every country is unique and specific, but we see also as well that there are plenty of things that are extremely common now to see across countries, and generations, and it’s quite interesting.”

“There are a couple of industries that despite the crisis will always be successful and food and beverage are one of them. This is also one luxury that we have in this industry.”

“What is common is the celebration in the sense that people like to celebrate, people like to give gifts to their family, to their relatives, to their friends. And this is the same. Now we have, here in Asia, lots of celebrations that are unique, like Chinese new year, lunar new year, Middleton festival in China, Chuseok in Korea.”

“The really tricky key point is you need to find the local insights that make your product relevant and to find a way to enter and leverage these local insights, without forgetting where you come from, without forgetting the DNA of your brand, the heritage of your brand and making successful leveraging on one specific local insight, to be relevant.”

“So in order to really be relevant for the local consumer, they have developed this unique model now, so you see the different styles of adaptation to the market. So either you find brands that have understood a local insight and develop a product accordingly, or you find another set of brands not changing anything to the recipe or to their positioning, or trying to find a way to anchor their brand to local insight.”

“The first thing to really understand the consumer journey, the shopper journey, and say, what are the drivers and barriers to consumption, to try to find some sweet spots where you could enter quite easily.”

“If you want to be internationally or locally relevant, you need to be open. You need to be pragmatic as well, and less dogmatic. Because if not, you might face a lot of challenges. This is one thing. The second one is that you need to really, understand who you are speaking with. You need, if you want to be successful, you need to be locally relevant.”