That’s the name—spelled phonetically—of Kraft’s new global snack company. It’s actually Mondelez International, which is a mash-up of the French word monde
, meaning “world,” and the Spanish word delez
, a fun interpretation of “delish.”
Kraft chose the name for its snack division, which reportedly has more global appeal—hence the international name. If Kraft shareholders approve the new name in May, Mondelez will be the umbrella company for Oreo, Cadbury, Nabisco, Trident, and others.
What’s the reaction?
Business Insider called it “an act of madness
.” A Twitter user referred to the new name as “beyond awful
.” Pat Kiernan, the NY1 news anchor, called it the “WTF of the Day
.” Others on Twitter said it reminds them of Vandelay Industries
, the fictional company where George Costanza on “Seinfeld” claimed to work.
Crain’s Chicago Business
pointed out that Mondelez sounds like a dirty word in Russian.
Gawker said the name is “crumbelievably stupid
In a more measured analysis of the name, Bloomberg quoted a branding expert who took issue with the difficult pronunciation. Nina Beckhardt, founder and president of New York-based The Naming Group
, told Bloomberg
“The public gets sick of compressed words if they aren’t intuitive. When the pronunciation isn’t accessible, it looks bad. It’s not intuitive.”
Here’s what Kraft had to say about it.
“Mondelez perfectly captures the idea of a 'delicious world' and will serve as a solid foundation for the strong relationships we want to create with our consumers, customers, employees and shareholders,” said Kraft Chairman and CEO Irene Rosenfeld in a press release
Mary Beth West, executive vice president and chief marketing officer at Kraft, added:
“It's quite a job for a single word to capture everything about what we want the new global snacks company to stand for. I'm thrilled with the name Mondelez International. It's interesting, unique and captures a big idea—just the way the snacks we make can take small moments in our lives and turn them into something bigger, brighter and more joyful.”
Kraft chose the name by asking its employees around the globe to offer suggestions. According to the company, more than 1,000 employees submitted over 1,700 names. Mondelez is a combination of two suggestions, one from Kraft’s general counsel working at its headquarters in Northfield, Ill., according to Businessweek
. The other employee was Johannes Schmidt, a Kraft veteran working in Vienna.
Whether or not the critics are right and the rebranding flops, The New York Times
noted that consumers rarely identify with a parent company. They buy Oreos, not Mondelez cookies. And the tough pronunciation? Two words: Häagen-Dazs.
What do you think about the new name?