UPDATE: InBev joy at A-B US deal
InBev has hailed its deal with Anheuser-Busch in the US as an opportunity to increase the presence of its brands across the country.
The two brewers yesterday (30 November) announced that A-B will become InBev's exclusive distributor for a number of the Belgian brewer's premium European beers in the US.
"Building our global brands has been a precise strategy for InBev, so we are very pleased with the deal," a spokesperson for InBev told just-drinks today. "With access to Anheuser-Busch's distribution network, our brands will be able to reach more US consumers."
When the agreement was unveiled yesterday, specific details were not made available. The spokesperson declined to add to this, saying only that "it's a long-term agreement".
The spokesperson also declined to give details of how the agreement came about, noting only that the two companies already have a similar agreement in Canada. "The lines of communication are already open," the spokesperson said.
From 1 February, A-B will import, sell, promote and distribute Stella Artois, Beck's, Bass Pale Ale, Hoegaarden, Leffe and other select InBev brands. InBev's Canadian brands, including Labatt Blue and Labatt Blue Light, as well as Brahma, are not included in the agreement, and will continue to be marketed and sold by InBev USA.
When asked about any further agreements in other markets between the two in the future, the spokesperson said: "This is a distribution agreement for the US. At this stage, we have no further plans (with A-B)."
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