In the UK, Yoplait focuses on younger consumers with brands including Yoplait Yoghurt and the Petits Filous Fromage Frais and Frubes ranges. It is understood that as part of its new strategy it will aim to target older consumers with the launch of brands already popular in France, for example its fromage frais dessert Perle De Lait and the Calin brand.
Meanwhile, Yoplait UK is also believed to be planning to increase its spend on TV advertising. It currently spends an estimated £5m a year on main media for the Petit Filous brand and £2m on Petits Frubes.
The change in strategy comes just months after Dairy Crest’s decision to sell its 49% stake in Yoplait Dairy Crest to Yoplait for an estimated £63.5m.
As part of the changes, Yoplait Dairy Crest marketing director Gerry Roads has left the company, with his responsibilities now taken on by Yoplait France’s sales and marketing director, Stephane Dalyac. It is not known if Roads has a job to go to.
Dalyac is also part of Yoplait’s management team at its French headquarters that has sales and marketing responsibilities in markets outside of Europe.
Similarly, Yoplait chairman Lucien Fa has now added the responsibility of UK managing director to his remit. It was previously held by Ian Ainsworth, who is understood to have taken on a commercial role within the business.
The Yoplait UK marketing department is currently under consultation and the team is expected to be cut by up to half.
As part of the changes Yoplait UK has cut its ties with McCann Erickson after more than ten years, handing the account to Publicis Paris. The agency network is already an incumbent on the Yoplait business in other markets.
Yoplait declined to comment as Marketing Week went to press.