The Global Branding of Stella Artois

1420 words 6 pages
The Global Branding of Stella Artois*

Synopsis

Interbrew had developed into the world's fourth largest brewer by acquiring and managing a large portfolio of national and regional beer brands in markets around the world. More recently, senior management had decided to develop one of their premium beers, Stella Artois, as a global brand. This case examines the early stages of Interbrew's global branding strategy and tactics, enabling students to consider these concepts in the context of a fragmented but consolidating industry.

Discussion Questions

1. Does it make sense for Interbrew to develop a global brand?

Table 1 – Pros and Cons of Global Brands

The case for a global brand The case against a global brand
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While Stella is being launched globally, it is important to note that all launches are different. Since all cities have their specific characteristics concerning overall distribution systems, Interbrew capabilities (as they relate to power and control over distribution), the advertising environment and media costs, competitive brands available, etc., a launch of Stella Artois must be tailored to a specific city. For example, in New York City, advertising would be very selective and targeted because Interbrew has limited distribution in off-trade and media is expensive. In contrast, in Moscow, Stella will be launched with full media support because Interbrew has a strong position in the distribution chain and media costs are low. Numerous comparisons can be made between cities, demonstrating the differentiating approach per city.

Some of the key points that Interbrew tended to emphasize in its city launches were:
a) Obtain on-premise distribution
• 50 to 100 draft outlets in the first year
• total of 200 draft outlets
• very strict distribution policy (quality pub or restaurant, staff trained to pour draft, branded glass, point-of-sale materials)

b) Minimum of one "Belgian Beer Café"
• to showcase the Belgian beer culture, to create a $BEC (Buzz" for Stella Artois and to build brand image

c) Outdoor advertising
• focus on striking images at prestige sites
• outdoor advertising is primary medium supported by

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