Diana Marszalek 01 Oct 2020 // 11:00AM GMT
MINNEAPOLIS — Food giant General Mills is reviewing its PR agency support, a year into Jano Cabrera’s tenure as chief communications officer.
The review – understood to be in its later stages – covers a number of briefs, including a corporate communications assignment that emphasizes awareness of General Mills' CSR efforts. The company's purpose agenda is led by initiatives to reduce hunger and preserve the planet.
With more than 100 brands distributed around the world, General Mills currently works with a broad agency roster that has included major holding company firms such as Ketchum and Golin as well as smaller creative shops, like Minneapolis’ Fast Horse.
General Mills spokesperson Rob Litt would not offer details but said: “It is part of our practice to regularly evaluate our agency partners to ensure we have the right mix for General Mills and our brands."
The current review is being conducted under the watch of Cabrera, a former McDonald’s comms head who joined General Mills in August, 2019. He replaced Mary Lynn Carver, who stepped down from the role after four years and currently runs her own consultancy.
The move also comes amid a broader rethink of the company’s marketing strategy. In discussing fiscal 2021 first quarter earnings (during which net sales rose 9% to $4.4 billion), CEO Jeff Harmening said General Mills is in the process of increasing its marketing spend, particularly around its big brands and business-driving initiatives, Strategy reported. Changes will also include a greater emphasis on digital marketing and e-commerce.
One of General Mills' last big communications reviews was in 2016, when the company’s joint venture with Nestlé, Cereal Partners Worldwide, reviewed its global PR capabilities.