July 13, 2020

Top Food companies impacted by COVID-19
and their Strategies to Stay Afloat

Author i95Dev Admin
Category B2B eCommerce | Blog | Covid-19 |

In our previous blog post, we discussed how the food industry has been impacted by the pandemic and how e-commerce is helping them to revive.

In case you missed it, have a look here: Impact of COVID-19 on Food Industry and How E-Commerce is helping

Now, with our expertise and deep understanding of the FMCG industry, we have got stories of the top food companies impacted by the COVID-19 crisis and most importantly, their strategies that kept their businesses doing well.


To keep up to the ‘new normal’ Nestle Malaysia in conjunction with Starbucks launched its new ‘At-home’ range that allows customers to order online and enjoy the high-quality Starbucks Coffee in a convenient instant and soluble form.

The ‘At-home’ collection includes a new range of Medium Roast and Dark Roast coffees for a variety of customer tastes and choices. Nestle will be selling these 11 variants of At-home coffee range on e-commerce platforms such as Lazada, Shopee, also at offline retailers and supermarkets.

This is a very well thought and a strategic move by Starbucks and Nestle , that is helping them keep up in the COVID-19 crisis:

  • It helps their business going without getting affected even when customers choose not to visit their cafes
  • Unaffected delivery to the customers
  • By delivering coffee at home they cooperate with customer’s for their safety and well-being


Alibaba saw a tremendous rise in demand at its grocery chain Freshippo, both in terms of its fresh grocery products as well as new users to the e-store. The rise in demand also included senior citizens which was never seen before.

Alibaba believes that the COVID-19 pandemic has brought in a digital transformation in the food and beverage retail sector especially in the older and younger generation. While the consumers are being more health-conscious post-pandemic, Freshippo planned to introduce more ready to cook meals, baking products, healthy-organic snacks, and low-fat food items.

Also, to manage worldwide unemployment due to the pandemic Alibaba protects the employment of thousands of its employees by practicing employee-sharing schemes with Freshippo. They believe that the scheme not only helped them save their employees from the outbreak crisis but also helped them in delivering the increased demand for online groceries and allowed them to deliver fresh and perishable items speedily.

Coca Cola

Coca Cola Amatil had been experiencing problems since the Australia bushfires and later followed by the COVID-19 pandemic. Lower sales volumes were witnessed till April this year due to change in consumer preferences during the outbreak.

The leading brand talks about its business in Indonesia, which was its hardest-hit market during the Ramadan celebrations across the country. The sales dropped by 40% because of the restriction and lockdown.

Coca Cola is working on the caution planning related to costs and finances especially the expenditures in line with the COVID-19 trading. The firm is also focusing on cost-cutting measures and sustainability issues.

As a result, they have collaborated with its packaging partner Dynapack Asia to build a new facility in Indonesia. The facility will specialize in bottle to bottle grade polyethylene terephthalate (PET) recycling.

The President Director of Coca Cola Amatil Indonesia calls this initiative a sustainable approach to plastic and a circular economy by bringing low-quality PET waste back to virgin-quality, food-grade PET.

It is estimated that similar facilities in Australia and New Zealand could reduce the use of new plastic resin by 25,000 tonnes each year. The cost cut here will help them achieve their goal of sustainability during the COVID-19 crisis and even after.


Top brands in the FMCG industry Heineken and Tiger Beer, both operated by HEINEKEN APAC, in the Asia Pacific region have faced a loss in sales volume at on-site beer consumption. Having said that, Heineken witnessed that their losses are well maintained by online sales.

Heineken and Tiger Beer believe that online sales are boosting because:

  • Many countries have imposed lockdown and the F&B outlets are closed
  • Consumers also are left with very few options
  • There is also an increase in demand via e-retailers

Though the online sales for both the brands are doing well, they are working on revising their marketing strategies in APAC, on a market-to-market basis.

One of the strategies is, they are maximizing their reach and relevance by adapting media and below-the-line (BTL) strategy. Therefore, for markets with limited access or lockdown they have increased marketing efforts on digital, social media, and TV. Where BTL advertising is specific consumer-targeted forms of advertising via social media, emails, events, etc.

Knowing that variety is the key factor for the alcohol markets in the region, the brands have not stopped their efforts in innovation as that helps them meet consumers’ changing needs.

Additionally, Tiger Beer came up with COVID-19 #SupportOurStreets initiative, for the local pubs, coffee shops, food courts, etc. Where the consumers pledge monetary contributions to these F&B outlets to keep them alive, while Tiger will be offering two bottles of beer to these consumers for free whenever the outlets are reopened.

This strategy not only keeps their customers engaged with them even during the lockdown but also makes sure they return to them whenever the lockdown restrictions are lifted.

i95Dev: How can we help you during the COVID-19 crisis

We have worked with over 180+ clients in every niche industry. If you are worried about the loss COVID-19 has caused your business, it ends here as you have come to the right place.

According to our expertise, there can be two scenarios:

  • You don’t have an e-store and would like to move your physical store to an e-commerce platform
  • You already have an e-store , however you face problems in working efficiently that causes a great loss in potential customers

We have helped over 100+ merchants bring their physical store to the e-commerce platform seamlessly.

While, in the second scenario, just having an e-store doesn’t win the game but you need to have your ERP system and e-commerce platform integrated and synced.

With our immense expertise and domain knowledge, here is a scenario where our FMCG client highly benefited as a result of collaborating with us:

One of our biggest clients, Gourmet Egypt, is a leading food manufacturing and retailing company in Egypt. They are mainly into food retailing and food manufacturing.
Gourmet Egypt wished to lead the market in meeting changing consumers’ habits through its retail and e-commerce operations. However, it faced several operational issues in the process.

Gourmet Egypt then engaged with i95Dev and saw 89% increase in sales, 99.85% decrease in spam/junk traffic than before and 50% improvement in page load time.

If you wish to take business to the next level too, contact us now!

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