Milton’s Fine Foods, Inc., acquired by GESD Capital Partners in 2007, was spawned in 1996 from Milton’s Delicatessen in Del Mar, CA. Milton’s first product was a “better for you” bread, which was followed over the ensuing years by crackers, and most recently by frozen foods.
Milton’s bread was a highly successful product, as was crackers. However, the introduction of frozen products caused some consumer confusion regarding the Milton’s brand.
GESD and Milton’s management believed there was substantial growth opportunity with the brand in club, mass merchant and grocery channels by further penetrating existing geographic presence, and by expanding geographic distribution. However, they realized it was time to understand how consumers perceived the Milton’s brand, and in turn, how the Milton’s brand could evolve to fuel their aggressive growth goals. Additionally, Milton’s was aware of the implications these plans may have on their manufacturing and distribution partners. This is especially true of how Milton’s future products may affect their strategic baking partners (i.e. Bimbo’s and Sara Lee) who are also competitors.
We guided a cross-functional team in developing a Brand Strategy that would build a strong relationship with target consumers. This began with significant qualitative and quantitative research to understand how consumers related to the Milton’s brand today, and consumers’ underlying needs and motivations. Lastly we agreed on how we wanted the brand to evolve in the future, and created an emotional Brand Promise that was compelling, believable and distinct to drive growth consistent with their Business Strategy.
- Larry Oberkfell, Operating Partner, GESD Capital Partners
- Bob Obenberger, President / CEO, Milton’s Baking Company
- Dave Dimond Vice President – Bread Division, Milton’s Baking Company
- Dan Scrivner, Vice President – Crackers Division, Milton’s Baking Company
- Simon Kyne, Vice President – Marketing, Milton’s Baking Company
- Sharon Duvall, Co-Founder and Senior Managing Partner, GESD Capital Partners
- Mark Briggs , Co-Founder and Partner, GESD Capital Partners