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Beer Marketer's INSIGHTS

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Beer Marketer's INSIGHTS, our flagship newsletter, is published 23X a year. For the last 38 years, it has frequently been the first and often only publication to report the most important beer industry facts, trends, and insights. Each issue features four info-packed pages. Inside, you'll find the latest news and numbers about the US beer business, with a special focus on exclusive articles and analysis. Readers of Beer Marketer's INSIGHTS get the info necessary to stay abreast of the latest industry events, and the understanding of those events. Here's just a small sampling of what you'll find inside:

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Both shipment and scan data show import segment up in 5% range Jan-Jun. But trends within segment extremely uneven. Mexican brews increasingly dominate the category. Indeed, Mexican beers grabbed fully 70 share of total import shipments, and over 12 share of US volume on their own. What’s more, Mexican volume +13.5 mil cases Jan-Jun, while total imports up just 11.8 mil cases. Trends from other key source countries all over the map. Dutch shipments very soft, -3 mil cases, 9%. But Belgian/German shipments combined (to adjust for shifting Stella Artois shipping patterns in different time frames) up solid 1.7 mil cases, 9.5%. Meanwhile, Canadian and Irish shipments basically even. UK shipments tanked, -1.1 mil cases, -57%. Italy and Jamaica showing strong growth on modest bases. Those 9 countries supply almost 98% of all beer imported to US. Among top import brands, IRI MULC scans show same variation. As in mainstream beer, top brands strugglin’; innovation, plus 1 established brand, drive import growth. Indeed, 4 of top 5 import brands flat or down yr-to-date thru Jul 15 in scans. Corona Extra dipped 170K cases, 0.6%. Modelo Especial gained 3.9 mil cases, 16%. Heineken down near 2% and Dos Equis Lager off…

Publishing Info

  • Year 2018
  • Volume 49
  • Issue # 15
Traditional beer mktg under continued pressure and what comes next up in air as evinced by departure of MC CMO David Kroll and Boston Beer CMO Jonathan Potter in just 2 weeks in July, for very different reasons. David faced mounting issues as MC trends deteriorated, especially Coors Light (see above). But Jonathan will leave Jul 31, even as Boston Beer trends accelerated and stock hit new highs. So what gives? Unclear at presstime, tho Boston Beer founder Jim Koch has often had uneasy relationship with mktg (mktg = masturbation, selling = sex, he used to say). Jim didn’t hire his first mktg person until 1994, 10 yrs after he started Boston. Or maybe Jon didn’t click with new ceo Dave Burwick? But given trends (except on its beers), Jon’s departure after just 2 yrs comes as a surprise. Two other CMOs changed at top 6 beer suppliers in just last 10 mos. Recall, in Feb, HUSA’s then-cmo Nuno Teles left to become Diageo Beer CO USA prexy, where he’s presided over some pretty good trends. Much better than at HUSA, in fact. HUSA still airing mktg developed by Nuno’s team. Go figure. New HUSA cmo Jonnie Cahill came from…

Publishing Info

  • Year 2018
  • Volume 49
  • Issue # 13
When Heineken announced Maggie Timoney will replace Ronald den Elzen as ceo of Heineken USA starting Sep 1, much made of fact that she is first ever female ceo of top 5 US supplier. “Heineken shatters US beer industry’s glass ceiling,” Ad Age headlined. While that’s indeed notable in such a male-dominated industry, at least as significant are the many challenges Maggie will face to turn Heineken USA around. Maggie gets raves from lotsa folks who knew/know her well. But folks question whether HUSA, with just a 4 share and no brands of size growing, can get back to growth no matter how skilled the leader. For past 5 yrs, Maggie ran Ireland for Heineken. That biz no small potatoes, but reportedly less than half of HUSA. Actually, only 4% of Heineken’s global volume in US (a little higher on profits). In Ireland, Maggie “over-delivered on volume, revenue, profit and market targets,” co said. Maggie born in Ireland, but a US citizen. She spent much of her career here, including as SVP of Human Resources at HUSA. HUSA volume under increased pressure in last 12 mos. Following 3% loss last yr (worst trend since 2011), it dropped high single digits…

Publishing Info

  • Year 2018
  • Volume 49
  • Issue # 11
MillerCoors originally wrote distribs that its supply chain “would resume full operation” by end of Apr, but now at end of May, co still struggling with same issues. And it doesn’t know when situation will be fixed (tho it has improved). So MC missing important sales in peak-selling season. Distribs cannot even get all of beer they ordered. Brands like Coors Banquet and Blue Moon, heavily or exclusively brewed in Golden are taking hit. MC has often boasted that Coors Banquet up 11 straight yrs. It likely won’t make 12. Down 3.5% yr-to-date thru May 12 in Nielsen all outlet. Blue Moon Belgian White down 2%. At least, Miller Lite on improved track; up slightly last 4 weeks. And Sol flying off small base. Meanwhile, Molson Coors under pressure with value of stock down over 40% from peak. But co maintains it’s on right course. “There is no plan B,” one analyst recently quipped. Needs to sell, merge or do JV, said an astute longtime observer. But “very few if any buyers,” according to another and also “no successor” within co. So what will Molson Coors do? Confluence of challenging circumstances and strategic conundrums leading up to TAP investor day…

Publishing Info

  • Year 2018
  • Volume 49
  • Issue # 10
Ever play “which of these pictures look the most like the other?” One irony of beer biz these days is how craft segment beginning to look more and more like mainstream beer in some key ways. For one example, look at top-5 brand trends by segment in IRI MULC data yr-to-date thru Nov 5. (These are BMI-defined segments, by the way; IRI, for example, includes Blue Moon and Leinie Shandy in craft, while we put ’em in superpremium.) Segments that look most alike: premium and craft. In each, 4 of 5 top brands down yr-to-date. Among premiums, top 4 each down low to mid-singles as they’ve been much of 2017. Yuengling eked out tiny gain, thanks to Indy expansion. In craft, #4 Lagunitas +6.2%. But that’s significant slowdown (and up just 2% for 12 wks). And 4 other top craft brands each down, including double-digit losses for Sam Seasonals and Fat Tire, near double-digits for Sierra Nevada Pale Ale. Interesting that Shiner Bock hangin’ in as well as it is, despite fierce, growing competition in key Tex mkt. Top 5 Brands By Segment: YTD Volume Trend, IRI MULC Premium % Chg Import % Chg FMB % Chg Bud Lt -5.4…

Publishing Info

  • Year 2017
  • Volume 48
  • Issue # 22
Not very many notable beer distrib transactions popped in 1st half but 2d half started with a bang. Frank Liquor, parent co of Frank Beer Dist and La Crosse Bev, will buy Beer Capitol, the state's largest beer distrib at around 9.5 mil cases. When that transaction completed around Oct 1, Frank will sell 17 mil cases of beer, over 25% of beer volume in state, and have almost 750 employees. Frank sez it will be one of top 20 US beer distribs. It will also be MC's largest distrib in its highest share state (40 share) selling 11 mil cases of MC brands. That's over 40% of MC biz in state (27 mil cases last yr). On top of it, Frank reportedly will sell about 1.3 mil cases of Constellation and about 1 mil of New Glarus too. Frank is a 4th generation family biz in Madison that sells beer, wine and spirits across big swath of geography in state. Beer Capitol owner Aldo Madrigrano is current MC distrib council chairman, former NBWA chair, one of the more outgoing and visible beer distribs. Not often that a sitting council chair sells. MC had tuff time in Wisc in recent…

Publishing Info

  • Year 2016
  • Volume 47
  • Issue # 13
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