In 2014, Mars Inc. completed its acquisition of the Iams, Eukanuba and Natura brands in North America, Latin America and other select countries from The Procter & Gamble Co. (P&G). This year, at Global Pet Expo, Mars Petcare announced that two superpremium brands it acquired through that acquisition, California Natural and Evo, will now be sold exclusively through independent pet specialty retailers in the US.
Mars said the 2014 deal reinforced the company’s strategic intent to build its presence in emerging markets and would enable Mars Petcare to meet the needs of more customers and pets around the world. The Iams, Eukanuba and Natura brands were strategic additions that complemented Mars’ pet care portfolio. They joined Pedigree, Whiskas, Royal Canin, Banfield and Nutro.
The recent announcement means California Natural and Evo would not be sold at “big box” pet stores (such as PetSmart and Petco) or through ecommerce.
Brad Locke, Mars marketing director, acknowledged that some of the retailers expressed concerns and skepticism about Mars’ intentions, considering that the brands had originally been developed and market by Natura Pet Care as independent pet channel exclusives, but after Procter & Gamble’s acquisition of Natura in 2010, the exclusivity was inconsistent. The brands also suffered a series of recalls in 2013.
Mars Incorporated has successfully completed its acquisition of the Iams, Eukanuba and Natura brands in North America, Latin America and other select countries from The Procter & Gamble Company (P&G).
Pet owners want a lot from their pet food brands. They want primary proteins that suit what they believe is best for their animal. They want grains or they don't. They want something customized, but it has to be easy to understand.
Constraints and crises, like those experienced in 2020, help drive innovation and sustainability offers context.