SYDNEY: Mondelez, the snack foods giant, is launching its Mobile Futures initiative in Australia as it seeks to boost innovation around some of its biggest brands.

The mobile start-up accelerator programme, which has already been rolled out in the US and Brazil, aims to "ignite the company's consumer connections by collaborating with some of the brightest and most innovative minds in the mobile space".

Five of its brands, including Cadbury Dairy Milk, Marvellous Creations, Cadbury Favourites, Philadelphia cream cheese and belVita breakfast biscuits, will partner with five start-ups for a 90-day program to speed up and scale existing mobile ideas, AdNews reported.

"Around half of Australian consumers' online activity occurs via mobile or tablet devices," noted Bonin Bough, vice president of global media and consumer engagement at Mondelez International, "but there's a big gap between that mobile usage and where companies are investing their ad budgets."

Mondelez has previously indicated its intention to dedicate 10% of its global marketing budget to mobile with a view to becoming one of the world's top mobile marketers. Mobile Futures forms one strategic pillar in this approach, with a second being a "partnership track", represented by alliances such as those forged with the likes of Facebook and Google.

Last year Bough told the Mobile Media Upfront in New York that "the best way to predict the future is to be part of its invention", as he unveiled plans to introduce incubators to international markets.

The move into Australia comes shortly after one of its leading brands, Cadbury Dairy Milk, launched a major campaign there, with around 20% of the campaign budget devoted to digital. "It's the biggest social and most integrated campaign we've done in Australia," said Cadbury head of marketing Steve Chantry. "The [potential] social virality is immense."

It is hoping to start a debate among Australian consumers on social media about their favourite flavours while encouraging them to try something different. "Flavour is at the heart of Cadbury Dairy Milk … but we've never talked about flavour as a concept before," said Chantry.

Data sourced from AdNews; additional content by Warc staff