Deep Dive Into Yasso’s Playbook To Lead The Frozen Snacks Aisle Starting With Jüve Pops
Yasso, best known for its frozen Greek yogurt bars, has been in the business for exactly a decade, and 2021 seems to be just a beginning for the company to ultimately dominate the frozen snacking category with its recently launched incubation platform Jüve Pops.
Starting with a line of popsicles boosted with vitamins and electrolytes, Jüve Pops, which is led by Yasso’s cofounders Amanda Klane and Drew Harrington, in addition to a small group of internal team members, pivots as a first in bringing rejuvenating refreshment to the frozen aisle.
Bringing Functional Benefits To Popsicles
The strategy for the brand launch mimics how Yasso originally started – by identifying a white space for indulgent frozen treats with better-for-you ingredients, except this time, Jüve Pops can quickly grow by taking advantage of an already solid business network, mature supply chain , as well as e-commerce and commercialization capabilities.
IRI data ending May 16, 2021 showed Yasso has become the second fastest-growing brand across the top 149 U.S. snacking companies generating at least $150 million in annual retail sales. Its total revenue has grown $50 million in 2016 to $100 million in 2019, PitchBook indicated, and is expected to hit $200 million by the end of 2021.
For many, Yasso has well passed the revenue mark for a strategic buyout, but the team would rather stick to their ambition to become a leader in the better-for-you novelty snacking space on its own – the key reason why launching Jüve Pops is necessary.
“Functional beverages are on fire right now with consumers seeking products that serve multiple purposes and provide health and wellness benefits. Much like the migration of [what] we are seeing in value-added functional benefits across the beverage space, we see a huge opportunity to do the same in the popsicle category,” Yasso’s CEO Craig Shiesley said.
“What’s particularly unique about our incubation approach is that we leverage the expertise and creativity of our founders to ideate these new brand platforms. It keeps the core team focused on the growth of the Yasso brand, while we’re still able to create and build new brand and new category opportunities for broader Yasso, Inc.”
Repeated Tests Before National Rollout
Jüve Pops is currently in the testing phase through a few select retail partners, including Wegmans, Harris Teeter, and Gelson’s Markets, in addition to selling via DTC website, before launching nationally in the future.
Shiesley believes this playbook allows the brand to lean in with these retailers, and gather learnings from a hyper-focused level that can be replicated while it expands over time.
“We’re already seeing strong success indicators with velocities increasing on shelf with strong sequential growth of over 30% month-on-month with the goal of achieving item sales velocity in the top half, or approximately the top 100 items before we launch nationally,” he said.
However, Yasso is not in a rush to massively distribute the new product in a short period of time, Shiesley noted, “but rather, [we] are focused on getting this total proposition optimized prior to further expansion. Consistent with all of our new platforms, we will confirm that national launch decision when we see run rate sales in the test to deliver a minimum of $10 million.”
Overcoming Frozen Supply Chain Challenges
On the e-commerce side, Jüve Pops has also overcome what’s been challenging for most frozen snacks when it comes to shipping directly to consumers, according to Shiesley.
“This [Ambient] format is shipped at room temperature,” he explained, “and then frozen at your home, providing an incredibly reliable e-commerce experience, free from the product quality concerns that may be encountered while shipping other frozen novelty platforms.
“It also allows for a more efficient cost structure with reduced shipping fees and less packaging than what is required [for] shipping frozen products and platforms directly to households.”
Once the national launch of Jüve Pops is completed, Shiesley expects Yasso overall to double in sales and achieve 5% market share of the frozen novelties market in 2023.
“We’ll continue to battle competitors’ new launches and [ramp up] marketing efforts by developing and driving the business of our core Yasso bars and delivering best-in-class, delicious frozen snacking innovations,” Shiesley said.