The Cocoa Exchange - Video & Written Case

O.C. Ferrell, Ph.D. - Auburn University, Linda Ferrell, Ph.D. - Auburn University
July 1, 2017
Africa, Asia - Pacific, Europe, Latin & South America, North America
Strategy & General Management, Ethics & Social Justice, Operations, Marketing & Sales
5 pages
Business Model, business, Working Conditions, Diversity, supply chain, marketing
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Video - The Cocoa Exchange: A Case Study on Market Expansion and Sustainability
Written Case - The Cocoa Exchange: A Sweet Spot in the Supply Chain

In May of 2017, Mars, Incorporated, the world’s largest chocolate company, announced the launch of a new stand-alone subsidiary called The Cocoa Exchange. While Mars focuses on mass producing products like Snickers and M&M’S that are available in all distribution channels, The Cocoa Exchange aims to sell exclusive and premium chocolate products directly to consumers through a commission-based sales force under three product lines: Pod & Bean, Dove Signature, and Pure Dark. The Cocoa Exchange’s mission is to create incremental, non-cannibalizing growth for Mars through niche products targeting individual consumers rather than the mass market. The company accomplishes this by creating supply-chain efficiencies, thanks to its parent company, and using the direct selling business model. The company’s “Virtuous Cycle of Stakeholders,” sustainability practices and partnership with CARE, discussed in the case video, are a critical component of the business model’s success.

Large File 1 - 4-Minute Video
Large File 2 - 8-Minute Video

Learning Outcomes: 
  1. Understand how Mars can create a new business model with higher quality products
  2. Be able to explain how sustainability efforts can impact supply chains
  3. Understand the differences between Mars’ existing marketing channel and The Cocoa Exchange’s marketing channel
  4. Examine the role of sustainability and diversity in a supply chain

Watch Videos

Video (8 mins)

Video (4 mins)