The snack munchers among us have undoubtedly been mourning the fact that, starting this month, there is a Cheetos, Lay’s, and Doritos-shaped hole in our tummies for at least the next three years. But perhaps it’s not as gloomy as we thought, with reports suggesting that these popular snacks are sticking around after all, albeit under new names and packaging.
Just to recap, Cheetos, Lay’s, and Doritos are produced by and had been distributed in Indonesia by PepsiCo and local food giant PT Indofood CBP Sukses Makmur Tbk (ICBP) in a joint venture named PT Indofood Fritolay Makmur (IFL).
In February, ICBP bought the entirety of PepsiCo’s 49 percent of shares in IFL, which was reportedly valued at IDR494 billion (US$35 million), ending 30 years of cooperation between the two firms.
The transaction effectively terminated the existing license agreement with PepsiCo, namely related to Cheetos, Lay’s, and Doritos, six months after the acquisition. A clause on the deal also states that PepsiCo can’t produce or distribute the three products for three years starting from August 2021.
Amid sad goodbye tweets and panic-buying of snacks under the three brands, it appears that some netizens have made a noteworthy discovery hinting at Cheetos, Lay’s, and Doritos’ possible prevalence in the Indonesian market under new names.
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A widely circulating screenshot showed the name changes, with two of them appearing to be successors to popular Indonesian snack brands Chiki and Chitato. Cheetos is being renamed as Chiki Twist, while Lay’s will become Chitato Lite (maybe because the chips have no ripples like the OG Chitato we know and love), and Doritos will take on the new name Maxicorn.
Should the leaked timeline be factual, the rebrandings are set for a gradual launch, starting with Maxicorn and Chitato Lite in the first and third week of August, respectively; as well as Chiki Twist in the second week of September.
As seen on the Indonesian trademark services platform Jumbomark, the three new brands appear to have been registered for trademark in Indonesia by PT Indofood Sukses Makmur Tbk. and are still pending for approval.
At the time of this article’s publication, Indofood has yet to release a statement regarding the matter. No doubt it has left us wondering: will the snacks taste the same?
This isn’t the first time that PepsiCo pulled a major product out of Indonesia. Back in October 2019, Pepsi fizzed out of the country after PepsiCo and the drink’s Indonesian distributor Anugerah Indofood Barokah Makmur agreed to terminate their distribution agreement.
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