When we come to any supermarket, we are surrounded by a huge number of goods produced under a variety of brands.
But diversity is relative, in fact the vast majority of well-known food and beverage brands are owned by just a few billion-dollar companies. It often happens that the buyer chooses between two "competing" brands, the profit from the sale of which, as a result, will end up in the pocket of the same owner.
It would not be a big exaggeration to say that The Coca-Cola Company, founded in 1886, is the most well-known on this list. Needless to say, the most popular of the drinks it produces has become a kind of symbol of the American way of life. Not much less well-known are brands such as Sprite, Fanta, Bonaqua, Schweppes and Dr Pepper. The company's portfolio is constantly being supplemented with new brands, both creating new ones and absorbing existing ones (as is the case with the Russian Dobry juice brand).
The main activity of this French corporation is all kinds of dairy products. Many of our consumers are well aware of such brands as Activia, Actimel, Prostokvashino, Rastishka and some others. But that's just a drop in the ocean. It is believed that namely Danone created such a product as yogurt (however, it would be more correct to say popularized). In addition to "milk", the company also produces some other types of food and beverages. For example, it is she who owns the world-famous Evian mineral water brand.
American manufacturer specializing in instant and convenience foods. It has existed since 1906 (originally under the name Battle Creek Toasted Corn Flake Company), its very first product was Kellogg's corn flakes, after which the entire company was subsequently named. Today, the company owns more than a hundred brands such as Famous Amos, Eggo and Cheez-It, which are extremely popular in the United States. We have the most famous, perhaps, are such brands as Pringles and directly Kellogg's.
If you like sweets, then you must have heard about the products Mars, best known for making Mars, Snickers, Bounty, Twix and Milky Way chocolate bars. No less famous are such brands as M&M's, Juicy Fruit, Orbit and Wrigley's. But Mars isn't all about sweets and gum, it's also into fast food, beverages, and pet food (Pedigree is the most famous). But the history of the company, founded in 1911, began precisely with chocolate bars, which for a long time were its only products.
The American company Mondelēz appeared in 2012, after Kraft Foods, which existed since 1923, was divided into two independent companies - Kraft Foods Group and Mondelēz International. The first focused exclusively on the North American market. The second one began to work in the international direction and she got such world famous brands as Oreo, Milka, TUC, Toblerone, Dirol, Stimorol and some others.
Nestlé began its operations in 1866 with the production of infant formula, which still plays an important role in the company's income today. What started as a small family business has grown into a huge multinational corporation with many brands, the most famous of which are Nesquik, Nescafe, KitKat, Maggi, Nestea and Wonka. Moreover, today Nestlé is the world's largest food producer. As for the range of products, it is exceptionally wide and includes not only food, but also pharmaceuticals and cosmetics.
Arch-rival of Coca-Cola, best known Pepsi brand. Somewhat less well known are brands such as 7up, Tropicana, Mountain Dew. But PepsiCo specializes not only in drinks, but also in the production of various snacks. Many consumers are familiar with brands such as Cheetos, Lay's, Quaker, Doritos and many others. For a while, PepsiCo owned such well-known eatery chains as KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell. But in 1997, it was decided to separate them, as a result of which the Yum! Brands Inc. The history of PapsiCo began in 1965, after the merger of The Pepsi Cola Company and Frito Lay.
Perhaps, of all the companies listed here, it is Unilever that is distinguished by the widest range of products - food, drinks, household chemicals and perfumes. Many people know brands such as Dove, Rexona, Lux, Lipton, Knorr, Magnum, Pepsodent and many more. For some time, Unilever was also engaged in perfumery, but later it was decided to give this direction to the French-American company Coty Inc. Unilever was distinguished by such “versatility” from the very first days of its existence - the company was founded in 1930, as a result of the merger of soap and margarine manufacturers.
Naturally, this list is far from complete. Thus, it does not include such large food manufacturers as the British Associated British Foods, as well as the American Campbell Soup and General Mills (interestingly, the latter for some time dealt not only with food, but also with weapons of mass destruction). The fact is that almost all the brands they own are familiar mainly to residents of the United States and Western Europe.
The “magnificent eight”, which we called, is interesting in that its products can be found in almost any country around the world. A world in which there are tens of thousands of brands owned by only a few hundred owners.