Collaborations between companies are essential to the advancement of innovation and the long-term growth and success of the businesses involved. Founded on this conviction that, over and above competition, it is collaboration that unlocks new growth opportunities, the Innodelice ecosystem was created and is now dedicated to the frozen desserts industry with the goal of helping brands, manufacturers, and suppliers in the industry discover, buy and sell between them the solutions they need to grow their businesses faster and with reduced risk and lower costs.
The ecosystem works as a global hub of solutions where the objective is to understand each partner’s challenges/needs and respectfully leverage other partners within the ecosystem as the solution. The desired outcome: mutual, and many times, unexpected new growth opportunities for all parties involved.
Currently, the ecosystem is home to over 70 partners worldwide (>55 brands and manufacturers, and 15 suppliers & distributors) from start-ups to international organisations. This doesn't take into account our thousands of followers on social media and email network which include retailers, brokers, other brands, manufacturers, suppliers, and of course ice cream lovers.
Below, we will be exploring how frozen dessert brand owners around the world can benefit from collaborating within the Innodelice ecosystem. Here are some of the benefits you can read about in more detail below - click one to take you directly to that section:
DISCOVER INNOVATIVE PRODUCTS AND CO-PACKERS
The ice cream category is one of the most innovative food categories in the world. Launching the next new flavour, format and/or concept is where brands tend to spend most of their energy and resources. However, even the most organised, well-connected brands face challenging dilemmas.
The table below highlights some of the main challenges that brands come up against paired with their respective solutions that the ecosystem aims to solve. We have also elaborated on each challenge further down.
1. The Challenge: Searching
Searching for the right partner takes up an obscene amount of time and there is no one place to look through all the potential manufacturers to work with.
This becomes more complex in certain geographies where there may be a lack of manufacturing capacity forcing brands to look abroad.
COVID made this even more challenging with added travel restrictions and the cancellation or postponement of international fairs.
We have dedicated ourselves to scouting the world so you don’t have to. Contrary to lists you can find on the net, we spend time understanding each manufacturer's vision and culture, their current and upcoming manufacturing capabilities, product characteristics and most importantly their competitive advantages (ie: what makes them different).
We have consolidated this wealth of knowledge in our Co-Man Platform, the very first global frozen dessert catalogue that allows brands to browse manufacturers around the world.
This allows you to save time searching for suitable co-packers while gaining visibility on innovative products.
2. The Challenge: Selecting
If you thought that searching for the right products and co-packers takes time, you should understand that actually making the best selection for your brand can take up just as much time. There are so many elements to consider such as flavour, formats, quality, ingredients, claims, certifications, capacity, pricing, and conditions, to name a few.
That list doesn't include the business culture and vision of the partner you are looking to collaborate with, which are often overlooked elements that shouldn't be left out of the selection process if you want to find a truly aligned partnership.
We accelerate the selection phase through a lean process that starts with:
Understanding the brands requirements, product characteristics, targeted markets, timeline, and desired conditions.
Our database filled with co-packers and product information allows us to narrow down the most promising partners for you. By sharing the brief, manufacturers can quickly determine if they are interested in the opportunity.
By taking the time to understand each partner’s business culture, team spirit, organisation vision, we can identify and recommend best partnerships.
This allows you to trust that you have identified the right partner with less risk.
3. The Challenge: Connecting
When presenting the brands in our ecosystem with potential partners for the first time, they often tell us that they had previously tried to reach out to said partners but were met with radio silence. This might happen for various reasons, but most likely is that it is difficult to find the correct contact, or their brand is perceived as too small so it is not prioritised.
Andrea Montreuil, Innodelice CEO and Co-Founder explains: “What brands might not realise is that often, their way of communicating with co-packers is too centred on their needs instead of those of the co-packer. In a growing-capacity-constraint market, brands also often fall between the cracks and never receive an answer back which leads to time and opportunity wasted on both sides.”
Leveraging our consolidated knowledge, we can continue to bring multiple opportunities to manufacturers which allows us to be not only connected to the right contact, but also have their full attention and quick response times.
This allows you to become a priority with co-packers, gain their attention and have speedier interactions that can lead to opportunities.
4. The Challenge: Collaborating
Finding the right co-packer does not automatically mean you will enjoy a successful, timely launch. The more accurate reality is that:
Some brands don’t yet have the necessary experience to understand the critical steps and milestones they need to meet their on-the-shelf timeline.
Most brands (big or small) have lean teams with so much to do. Focusing on the many crucial steps of launching a new product and/or developing a new co-packing relationship often comes at the cost of other important activities.
Our project management role allows all partners involved to focus on their respective core activities. The process we use enables us to guide our partners in implementing best collaboration practices including:
Documentation: tech sheets, certifications, logos, etc.
Product validation: obtaining/shipping samples, R&D work.
Pricing: negotiating and confirming complete (and mutually fair) conditions. We can even help in agreement negotiations between partners.
Weekly action follow-ups until launch.
This allows you to launch in a timely manner, develop an efficient, collaborative relationship with your co-packer, scale-up in new markets, and focus on other key areas while we do the heavy lifting on the project management side.
GAINING VISIBILITY TO EXPAND
One of the reasons for the strong innovation capacity in the ice cream industry is largely thanks to the smaller, challenger brands that arrive on the market and disrupt the status quo which, in turn, forces the more established brands to reinvent themselves and their product lines. While this increases innovation, it also creates a very crowded marketplace and can make it difficult for brands to stand out.
“This was exactly the challenge our brand partners came to us with during Innodelice’s first year: to help connect them with more potential market opportunities to grow faster.” - Andrea Montreuil, CEO & Founder at Innodelice
With this challenge in mind, in March 2021, we launched our Brand Platform with the objective of obtaining more visibility for ice cream businesses from brokers, importers, and even retailers who are looking for new products to differentiate their portfolio. Brands like SNÖ have been able to expand their product portfolio and gain market visibility since being part of the ecosystem.
“Being part of the ecosystem has made available to me unique products and brought support from the ice cream community. With Innodelice, the sky is not even a limit.” - Michael Cantin, CEO at SNÖ.
FINDING INNOVATIVE, COMPETITIVE SUPPLIERS
In order to disrupt a market, a brand needs time to develop itself in a unique way. While this is necessary in order to stand out in an ever-more competitive marketplace, the road to success is paved with a long list of challenges such as finding the right suppliers, meeting minimum order requirements, achieving competitive pricing… the list goes on.
And this list of challenges was one of the reasons behind our creation of the Supplier Platform. We focus on partnering with suppliers that can bring value-added solutions to the brands in our ecosystem, for example:
Jean Niel: aside from their extensive experience and wealth of data, they have an incredible technology that allows them to capture the aroma of any food and transfer it into a flavour developed specifically for your product.
Topping Solutions: they have created a network of inclusion suppliers that can fulfil your wildest ice cream fantasies in just a fraction of the time. Additionally, they can pre-pack, cut, and mix different inclusions to personalise your orders.
If you are a brand looking to stay current with new innovative products, discover co-packing partners and suppliers, and/or gain more visibility to expand your business, the ecosystem may be perfect for you!
We call ourselves an ecosystem because, unlike other brokering or platform services, an ecosystem adapts and grows according to the needs of the people within it. Therefore, the more partners involved with the ecosystem, the richer the opportunity landscape is for you!
Founded by former executives in the Ice Cream industry, INNODELICE aims to create a worldwide ecosystem of solutions within the frozen dessert industry. Thanks to the relationships fostered by INNODELICE, manufacturers, brands, importers, distributors and suppliers can discover, buy and sell solutions to GROW their business. These solutions include co-manufactured and branded products as well as innovative and competitive ingredients, packaging and services. Our collaboration model generates lower costs and fewer risks for our participating partners while optimising their time to market. To learn more about INNODELICE, contact Andrea MONTREUIL (email@example.com) or visit www.innodelice.com.