Patty company divorces Pepsi
Sabrina Gordon, Business Reporter
Fast-food chain Juici Patties has dropped its long-standing partnership with Pepsi and is transitioning Coca-Cola under a new agreement with Wisynco Group.
Wisynco bottles and supplies Coca-Cola products in Jamaica.
None of the three parties involved wanted to comment in any detailed way on the change, but the new supply deal would likely have a sweet taste for Wisynco, which this month lost its distribution partnership with Ocean Spray to Pepsi Jamaica.
"At this moment I cannot make a statement; obviously it's a competitive environment and when a customer wants to switch, it is his decision ..., " said Gustavo Flamenco, commercial director for Pepsi-Cola Jamaica Bottling Company last Wednesday.
"I don't know of the timeline but yes, there is something going on there. It is a dynamic business, accounts shift, come and go, when things like this happens the only thing I can say is that our doors are open whenever they want to come back," he asserted.
In 2002, Pepsi Jamaica and Juici Patties inked a deal to serve Pepsi and other brand products such as Ting and Ginger Beer and other of its beverages at its stores, which at the time numbered approximately 35.
Since then, Juici Patties has grown to some 50 stores in Jamaica and one outlet in Canada.
The company has also grown its product line over the years, to include over 50 products comprising different types of patties, loaves, soups, porridges and traditional breakfast dishes.
"It's not the appropriate time to comment now, we are going through the process of a transition which was a prudent business decision," said Jackie Scott, marketing manager for Juici Patties.
The change from Pepsi soda-dispensing machine to Coca-Cola was noticed in at least two of the Juici stores already.
Flamenco said the business with Juici represented just about one per cent of Pepsi's sales, which they are already making plans to cover.
"We are covering this with new expanded innovation, new categories such as the Flavour Splash Ocean Spray while leveraging other business as well," he said.
Ocean Spray partnership
Contrastingly, Flamenco said Pepsi expects to grow sales by 10 per cent from the Ocean Spray partnership. Wisynco's boss William Mahfood said in a previous interview that Ocean Spray was no more than four per cent of the company's revenues.
Flavour Splash will now compete with Wisynco's CranWata. It was introduced at the top of September when Pepsi Jamaica took over the manufacturing, distribution and marketing of Ocean Spray products.
Wisynco touts its new account with Juici as a significant step for the company.
"Wisynco continues to build its footprint in the quick-service restaurants, clubs and attractions in Jamaica from Margaritaville, Dolphins Cove, Chukka Tours, Mystic Mountain, Pita Grill, Burger King, Palace Amusement, Bolt's Tracks and Records, Fiction Night Club, to name a few, and now Juici, one of the biggest quick-service restaurants in Jamaica to be added to that list with Coke or other brands in the portfolio," said Tamara Ward, country manager for Coca Cola & CranWATA at Wisynco Group.
Wisynco and Juici said they would hold off making detailed comments until mid-October when the transition is more advanced.
Wisynco also supplies beverages to patty chain Mother's Enterprises.