E-Malt. E-Malt.com News article: UK & Spain: Anheuser-Busch and Grupo Damm Partner to import Estrella Damm Barcelona to U.K.

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E-Malt.com News article: UK & Spain: Anheuser-Busch and Grupo Damm Partner to import Estrella Damm Barcelona to U.K.
Brewery news

Anheuser-Busch will begin importing Estrella Damm Barcelona, the flagship beer brand of Grupo Damm, to the United Kingdom the two brewers jointly announced, according to Anheuser-Busch’s press release of March 1. The beer will be distributed by Anheuser-Busch beginning mid-March.

The agreement provides the Spanish brewer with access to Anheuser-Busch’s marketing and sales expertise, and a broad U.K. distribution network.

“The U.K. import beer category continues to grow at a double-digit rate and adding Estrella Damm to our portfolio strengthens our presence in this segment,” said David Dryden, managing director, U.K. and Ireland, Anheuser-Busch Europe Ltd. “Damm’s meticulous selection process for the beer’s ingredients and its strict brewing standards fit perfectly with Anheuser-Busch’s commitment to delivering only the highest-quality beers to consumers.”

Since launching in Spain in 1876, Estrella Damm has become the most-popular beer in Barcelona and one of the most-popular brands in Spain’s premium beer category. The brand remains the only beer produced in Barcelona.

“Anheuser-Busch’s thorough understanding of the local beer industry will secure a significant presence for the brand in the U.K.,” said Enric Crous, general manager, Sociedad Anónima Damm. “Generations of master brewers have perfected the character and taste of Estrella Damm Barcelona, and we are proud to share this piece of Spanish heritage with U.K. consumers.”

The imported Estrella Damm will continue to be brewed and packaged at the Damm brewery in Barcelona. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed, and the brand’s U.K. marketing program will be unveiled in March.

Estrella Damm was born in the city centre of Barcelona, where August Kuentzmann Damm established the first brewery 131 years ago. The original brewery functioned until 1992, until the production was moved to the town of El Prat de Llobregat in the province of Barcelona in order to increase the beer production capacity and modernize its processes. Damm’s current headquarters still remains on the site of the original brewery.

Anheuser-Busch and Grupo Damm first partnered in 1995 through a licensed brewing, distribution and joint marketing agreement for Budweiser in Spain. Budweiser is brewed in Damm’s Barcelona brewery, where an Anheuser-Busch brewmaster oversees every step of the brewing process. Damm’s efforts over the past decade helped make Budweiser the fastest growing major international beer brand in 2006, according to Nielson data.

Grupo Damm began its business operations in 1876, when its first beer factory was established in Barcelona. Damm also has a network of plants involved in beverage production and packaging throughout the whole of Spain. Damm is the beer company with the longest tradition in Spain. Damm’s determined aim is toward innovation and high quality, which is shown through new product and packaging launches every year.

Based in St. Louis, Anheuser‑Busch is the leading American brewer, holding a 48.4 percent share of U.S. beer sales. The company brews the world’s largest-selling beers, Budweiser and Bud Light. Anheuser‑Busch also owns a 50 percent share in Grupo Modelo, Mexico’s leading brewer, and a 27 percent share in China brewer Tsingtao, whose namesake beer brand is the country’s best-selling premium beer. Anheuser-Busch ranked No. 1 among beverage companies in FORTUNE Magazine’s Most Admired U.S. and Global Companies lists in 2006. Anheuser‑Busch is one of the largest theme park operators in the United States, is a major manufacturer of aluminum cans and one of the world’s largest recyclers of aluminum cans.

02 March, 2007

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