All of Kepak's products were delisted by Tesco in 2009 after business terms were deemed "commercially untenable", according to the chilled supplier, but the retailer is reinstating 14 SKUs, including Rustlers Burgers, Hot Subs, Hot Wraps, Deli Café paninis and Speedy Snacks.
The relisting follows a string of launches from the company and marketing support including a racy print ad on the front of The Grocer [23 July] featuring a leggy blonde in a short nightie and heels peering into a fridge full of Rustlers burgers, alongside the suggestive strapline 'You can never have too much of a good thing'. At the time, The Evening Standard business pages dubbed it a contender for 'tasteless advert of the week', but Kepak chief executive Peter Jackson said it had allowed the brand to show the retailer how creative the company's brand support could be.
"It was referred to positively in a meeting with Tesco soon after it was published," he added.
Kepak currently has a 66% share of the hot snacking market [Nielsen 52w/e 9 July 2011] and its relisting with Tesco is expected to take this to 78% in the next 12 months and add £14m to sales.
"Tesco's decision to re-list all Kepak's leading products is a strong signal that our strategy of major product innovation, in-depth consumer insight and heavyweight brand investment is the key to accelerating the growth of our business and the category," said Jackson, who also revealed the company planned to double its £80m business through accelerated growth in the UK and Ireland and further European expansion.
Rustlers launched into Belgium and Holland three years ago and secured retail listings in France and Germany earlier this year.