Heineken has created a national account team in the US, dedicated to the country's on-trade.

The brewer's US unit said today (4 February) that the group, which consists of five national account managers, will "be dedicated to providing greater resources and focus to this growing market opportunity".

Andrew O'Rourke, director of on-premise national accounts at Heineken USA, said: "We at Heineken USA recognise that nearly one third of the on-premise market is controlled by national and regional chains and this segment is growing.

"We recognise to achieve ongoing success, we need to approach sales on a channel by channel, segment by segment basis. That's why we have established sales experts in each of our core business segments including: casual dining, hospitality, casinos, airlines and concessions."

The new team, managed by O'Rourke, will report into Steve Ward, vice president of national accounts and who is responsible for all on- and off-trade national accounts efforts.

The goup is made up of Steve Hutcherson and Jeff Bennett - casual dining; Greg Melton - hospitality, Andy Timothy - casinos and airlines and Barney O'Connell - concessions. The team is supported by Patrick Libonate - customer marketing and Todd Camassar - category management.

Ward added, "We understand these are difficult times for our on-premise partners. Now more than ever, people who make the decision to eat out want to make the most of the occasion."