How Amica Chips will ‘seduce’ international market

From vegan to kebab flavoured potato chips and the success of the Eldorada brand. New product launches are pushing Amica Chips growth
How Amica Chips will ‘seduce’ international market

Amica Chips is not intimidated by the recession. On the contrary, the downturn has shown them that, in order to keep growing commercially, they need to invest in new products, and quite literally tantalize Italy’s tastebuds. Innovation has paid off and the company that Alfredo Moratti founded together with his partner Andrea Romanò in the early 1990s will once again close out the year with a healthy balance sheet, and positive growth in terms of turnover. “We weathered the storm successfully this year” confirms Moratti, “the forecast for 2014 is for growth to the tune of 7% in terms of value, allowing us to reach a turnover of 83 million, and a domestic market share of 25%”.

What is behind these great results?

We have reaped the rewards of our decision to diversify. Big investments in new product launches, have allowed us to capture consumer attention and drive sales. Moreover, we have been successful in offering high quality products at an extremely competitive price.

How much did you invest in research & development?

Overall we invested over 10 million Euros to modernise and improve automation in our production plants. Increased automation in particular was a necessary outlay, that will allow us reduce our fixed overheads.

Which products have given you the most personal satisfaction?

For me it has to be ‘Eldorada’. Following a particularly effective and well-received advertising campaign the product has grown exponentially, with sales up by 40% since the campaign went live. Eldorada is a product I am particularly proud of since we came up with everything from the packet design (which has enjoyed massive popular appeal) to the flavour (which is not impacted by the 20% reduction in fat content), to the advertising.

•What’s next for Amica Chips?

We plan to embrace the growing trend for flavoured crisps, which are in high demand among multi-ethnic consumer groups and young people. Indeed, we have just launched our first ever kebab flavoured potato crisp! Next we plan to work on healthier options and introduce a new vegan line, called Veggy, which will have a potato, tomato and spinach flavour. It will be a 100% natural product, which is a first for this market. While it will clearly have a niche appeal, it also satisfies the needs of a very interesting and constantly increasing target audience.

What about your international selling strategy?

We are present in 27 countries, but with a fairly low turnover of around two million Euros. But this year we have decided to take the next step and we are hiring an export manager who will be tasked with growing the business internationally.

What are the key areas of interest?

We are really interested in the Northern European markets, where crisp prices are higher and there is are greater per capita consumption levels. Poland, The Czech Republic, Slovakia and Germany are just a few examples. We are also interested in the Far East, in particular Japan, China and Korea.

Will you also make use of online sales channels?

We already are, in Korea we have a partner who has been selling our products online since last November, with takings of over 500 000 euros already. We will also be launching in England, via a platform run by the Italia del Gusto consortium, which allows English consumers to purchase selected high quality Italian food brands online.

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