Jack in the Box, Blu Dot, Mc Donald’s, Toyota… … and other brands targeting the U.S. consumer right now. Check our prior Sales Leads columns.
Jack in the Box Acquires Del Taco
American fast-food restaurant chain Jack in the Box is expanding its national footprint with the purchase of Del Taco Restaurants for roughly U.S. $575 million. Del Taco operates 600 restaurants in the U.S. and is the second-largest Mexican quick-service restaurant group in the U.S. Jack in the Box CEO Darin Harris said: “We are thrilled to welcome Del Taco, a beloved brand and proven regional winner, to the Jack in the Box family. Combined, Del Taco and San Diego-based Jack in the
Box will have more than 2,800 restaurants across 25 states in the country. This is a natural combination of two like-minded, challenger brands with outstanding growth opportunities. Together, Jack in the Box and Del Taco will benefit from a stronger financial model, gaining greater scale to invest in digital and technology capabilities and unit growth for both brands. This acquisition fits squarely in our strategic pillars and helps us create new opportunities for the franchisees, team members and guests of both brands.” Del Taco president and CEO John Cappasola said: “We are excited to have found a partner in Jack in the Box that shares our vision for the future and has the QSR expertise to further accelerate Del Taco’s growth.“In recent years, we have uniquely positioned Del Taco as a leader in the growing Mexican QSR category, expanded our digital capabilities to enhance consumer convenience, and focused on growing the brand through franchising, resulting in eight consecutive years of franchise same-store sales growth and an accelerating new unit pipeline.” The deal awaits clearance by regulators and shareholders, with completion expected in the first calendar quarter of 2022. The Mexican restaurant sector is expected to have sales of US $66.68 billion in 2021.
Toyota is expanding into the car insurance business. Toyota wants to sell you a car, finance it, service it and now insure it, too. Toyota Auto Insurance is up and running and will soon be available in Texas. So far it’s being sold in Arizona, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio and South Carolina. Along with Texas, it will soon be operating in Georgia, Missouri and Tennessee with more states added monthly, Toyota announced last week. The auto insurance will be sold through its website, mobile app, call center agents and at participating Toyota dealerships. The insurance is supported by Toggle, the underwriter owned by Farmers Insurance. Will Nicklas, chief operating officer of Toyota Insurance Management Solutions, said the program will be expanded so that Toyota owners can use their personal driving data to receive more discounts.\
Separately, to extend the 2022 holiday message Toyota is inviting consumers to #sharethejoy by sending a digital “joy jar” to their friends and loved ones via the @Toyota Latino Instagram channel beginning December 10 through January 3, 2022. For every share, Toyota will make a donation to the Hispanic Scholarship Fund up to a total of $50,000 in support of student scholars nationwide. Conill created a new Toyota’s holiday ad, “Nora’s Joy,”The spot shares the story of a young woman who finds the ability to share her joy in a very magical way. Once she unleashes her emotions, we see her driving her Toyota Tacoma around town, spreading the joy with those around her in a flurry of bright lights lighting up the night sky. The 60-second version of “Nora’s Joy” launched on 12/11 on Univision’s broadcast of their annual their annual TeletonUSA 17-hour charity broadcast. That version, along with the 30-second version, will be airing on Hispanic broadcast, targeted cable networks and a variety of digital channels.“’Nora’s Joy’ is a reflection of what the holidays mean to many of us,” said Gustavo Sarkis, chief creative officer, Conill Advertising. “It’s a time when we share joy and laughter with our families, especially during these challenging times. We wanted to share that heartfelt message of joy as we enter the holiday season.”
Minneapolis-based Colle McVoy has been selected as media agency of record for furniture designer and retailer Blu Dot. The incumbent was Minneapolis-based Ciceron. Colle McVoy will lead global media strategy, investment and analytics across all channels spanning brand building and performance marketing campaigns. “Colle McVoy is the perfect partner to help Blu Dot continue our rapid growth of today and achieve our mission to bring good design to as many people as possible for tomorrow,” said Mike Wodtke, Vice President, Digital and Retail Operations for Blu Dot. “Its unique approach of blending data-led solutions with media creativity couldn’t be a more winning combination for us,” Wodtke concluded.
LiveKuna, a vertically integrated food company established in Ecuador, announced a Series A round of funding led by Gupo Bimbo. Grupo Bimbo, the world’s largest baking company and owner of over 100 brands including Sara Lee and Thomas’ English Muffins, will partner with LiveKuna on superfood innovations and support their plans to expand distribution in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico, strengthen the North American team, and increase the network of farmers. Before launching LiveKuna, co-founders Carlos Gutiérrez and Santiago Stacey work directly with nearly 500 environmentally-friendly farmers from their home country Ecuador to source chia and quinoa, telling a story of who, when, and where the ingredients come from. LiveKuna’s portfolio of natural products includes gluten-free flours, pastas, cereals, seeds, and grains in addition to its growth-driving line of superfood snacks KunaPops. “LiveKuna exceeds the expectations of today’s consumers, delivering clean-label snacks and traceable ingredients without sacrificing taste,” said Constantino Matouk, Director of Bimbo Ventures at Grupo Bimbo. “As we double down in the better-for-you category, we know LiveKuna will push the limits of what’s possible in snacking.” Last summer, LiveKuna launched KunaPops in the U.S. at all 364 Sprouts Farmers Market locations. LiveKuna offers an omnichannel experience to consumers, with products available at regional and national retailers and online at Sprouts Farmers Market, Ralphs, Amazon, SnackMagic, Gopuff, among others.