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Brazilian Takeover Bid Imperils Bud Brand

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V is for Victory
[V is for Victory – click to embiggen]

Blah blah blah. Bud was so eager to wrap itself with the American flag, I have no sympathy for them now.

CHICAGO (AdAge.com) — As Anheuser-Busch frets over how to ward off a takeover attempt from Brazilian-run InBev, the positioning of its flagship brand might just be the closest thing the No. 1 U.S. brewer has to a poison pill.

In fact, A-B distributors and agency executives who have worked on Bud and its sibling brands have grave doubts that a brand as overtly red, white and blue as Budweiser — and, by connection, its siblings — would remain credible with consumers under a Belgian owner operated by Brazilians.

“It could be a disaster,” said an executive at one of A-B’s agencies. “It’s all-American above all else — the Clydesdales, all the imagery. It’s an enormous challenge” if the brand becomes foreign-owned. And there’s a lot at stake: In 2007, $8.5 billion of A-B’s $16.7 billion in total global revenue came from sales of Bud-family brands in the U.S.

The situation is made even more ironic by the fact that A-B has in the past been willing to play the patriotism card against competitors. Earlier this decade, after Miller was acquired by South African Breweries and Coors merged with Canada-based Molson, A-B railed against their owners as “foreign interests” with a nativist strategy that would make Lou Dobbs blush.

On its websites and in point-of-sale materials, A-B ripped Miller and Coors for sending profits abroad and closing breweries here. “With over 80% of its employees outside of the United States, it’s hard to ignore a simple question: Does Miller reflect the American spirit?” said Budweiser’s official website at the time.

[From Brazilian Takeover Bid Imperils Bud Brand – Advertising Age – News]

American corporations like Anheuser-Busch who helped the Republicans get in power are now reaping their rewards – a dollar at near historic lows, and absentee corporate ownership in countries with stronger economies. Budweiser makes crappy beer to boot. They import a few quality brews (Bass Ale, for instance), but that has nothing to do with their brewing skills, just their distributing and political clout.

Written by Seth Anderson

June 4th, 2008 at 12:27 pm

Posted in Advertising,Food and Drink

Tagged with ,

2 Responses to 'Brazilian Takeover Bid Imperils Bud Brand'

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  1. […] InBev aka AnheuserBusch has purchased the iconic Chicago small brewer, Goose Island. I’m saddened, but money talks louder than pride, and I hope John Hall spends his new cash wisely. I will continue to drink Goose Island beer, unless they start cutting back on quality, but it just won’t be the same to drink Budweiser in a fancier bottle. President Obama can now give politicians Bud Light instead of Goose Island without blinking. […]

  2. […] First, Anheuser-Busch aka InBev has long been a sleazy corporation. You don’t give large amounts of corporate donations to scum like the Heartland Institute unless you are a willing tool of Republican agenda, and Anheuser-Busch is a willing tool of the GOP. […]

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