just the Facts - Budejovicky Budvar
Budejovicky Budvar is named after its home town of Budejovice
This week, just-drinks is in Czech, visiting Budejovicky Budvar. Ahead of an interview with the brewer's general director, which will run next week, here are some facts about the firm, its home town, its facilities, and its brands.
- Budejovicky Budvar is a Czech brewer, with its sole brewery located in the town of Ceské Budejovice, 150km south of Prague
- Beer has been brewed in the town since its founding in 1265. Budejovice, which has previously been known as Budiwoyz and Budweis, was granted a royal licence to brew beer by the Czech king Premysl Otakar II. The town changed its name from Budweis to Budejovice in 1918, when Czechoslovakia was created. The change was made to distance the new country from its German past: Budejovice is Budweis in Czech
- The company's current brewery was established in 1895, by Cesky Akciovy Pivovar, translated as Czech Share Brewery
- In 1930, the brand name Budvar was created: 'Bud' from the name of the town, and 'var' from the Czech for 'brewery'
- The name Budvar was added to the company name, Budvar Cesky Akciovy Pivovar, in 1936
- In 1967, the company name was changed to Budejovicky Budvar National Corp Budweiser Budvar National Corp Budweiser Budvar Enterprise Nationale
- The company's production facility, which employs around 600 people, has two artesian wells on-site that provide water for the beer. Current capacity stands at 1.5m hectolitres per year. This year, the company expects to produce 1.4m hls of beer
- While the site also house bottling and canning lines, administrative operations and logistics, capacity on the site could be increased to around 2.5m hls, although some construction work would be required
- The firm owns the Budvar and Pardal beer brands
- Around 50% of the company's sales are in export markets. Budejovicky Budvar is the fourth largest brewer in Czech, with 8% market share. SABMiller's Pilsner Urquell division leads with 45% share, followed by Molson Coors' Staropramen with 18% and Heineken's Czech operations with 14%
- The company has been in legal dispute with Anheuser-Busch, and now Anheuser-Busch InBev, over the ownership of the Budweiser trade mark for over 100 years
- Having been nationalised after World War II, the company is one of only five that have remained in Government hands following the country's 'Velvet Revolution' in 1989. Budejovicky Budvar reports into the Minister of Agriculture.
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