Well, SABMiller officially received the keys to CUB on Friday and we’re already seeing the changes in the landscape with Anheuser-Busch InBev brands moving to Lion. Lion replaced Coopers as the distributor for Budweiser back in 2009 and now adds the Belgian brands to its AB-InBev stable, which also includes Becks. It also brews Kirin and Heineken under licence.
There are plenty of rumours flying around at the moment regarding the future of various CUB and SABMiller brands, we’ll keep you posted – but in the meantime watch for Peroni to be everywhere this summer as existing Stella taps in CUB venues make way for the locally brewed Italian. It will also be interesting to see how Lion manage their contracted taps for such a similar portfolio as Stella, Becks and Heineken, regardless of the positioning statement below that Stella is ‘distinguished from other European lagers’.
Lion welcomes Stella Artois and Belgian specialty beers into its Australian portfolio
Sydney, 19 December 2012: Lion today announced that it will be adding Anheuser-Busch InBev brands Stella Artois and Belgian specialty beers Hoegaarden, Leffe and Belle-Vue Kriek to its Australian portfolio from April 1 2012.
The new partnership builds on the already strong relationship Lion shares with Anheuser-Busch InBev, with all Anheuser-Busch InBev’s global brands now sitting in Lion’s portfolios in both Australia and New Zealand.
“We are thrilled to be adding Stella Artois and Belgian specialty beers Hoegaarden, Leffe and Belle-Vue Kriek to our existing portfolio of international premium beers, which also includes AB InBev’s Beck’s and Budweiser,” said James Brindley, Managing Director Lion Beer, Spirits & Wine Australia.
“International premium is one of the fastest growing segments of the beer market*, and Stella Artois is a great beer with an impressive heritage. We are looking forward to working with Anheuser-Busch InBev to grow Stella Artois and the Belgian specialties locally.”
Ian Stephens, Vice President of AB InBev International said “Lion has been a trusted partner to our business for more than 20 years and has a proven track record in building premium brands, leading customer engagement and innovative marketing and in-market execution.”
*ACNielsen Australia, MAT to 31/10/2011
The relationship between Lion and Anheuser-Busch InBev stretches more than 20 years. Lion began distributing German brand Beck’s in 2001 and, building on the strength of this early partnership, a local brewing agreement was forged in 2004. In 2009 the relationship was extended with the introduction of the ‘Great American Lager’, Budweiser, to Lion’s portfolio.
About Stella Artois
Stella Artois traces its origins back to 1366 to the Den Hoorn brewery in Leuven, Belgium, just outside of Brussels. The beer was originally brewed to celebrate Christmas, and it was named Stella (Latin for “star”) for its exceptional clarity. Stella Artois has a pleasantly bitter flavour and refreshing finish that distinguishes it from other European lagers. Stella Artois should only be served in its signature chalice glass, which showcases its rich, golden colour while releasing the beer’s flavour and aroma.