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Home | News | Marketing | Snow arrives in the United Kingdom

Snow arrives in the United Kingdom

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Snow introduced in bottles, no draught presence

World’s largest beer brand now beyond China

Molson Coors is partnering with China Resources Breweries Ltd (CRSB) in the UK and Ireland, with it obtaining rights for the sales, distribution and marketing of Snow, the world’s biggest selling beer brand.

Molson Coors UK will have exclusive rights to the on- and of-trade for Snow, a beer brand that while the world’s largest as measured by beer volumes has virtually no presence in markets outside China. The 5.0% abv lager will be available for now in 330ml bottles with there being no immediate plans to introduce Snow in draught.

Snow is expected to grow Molson Coors’ presence in the UK’s ethnic restaurant sector, alongside Cobra and Singha.

Molson Coors UK & Ireland managing director Phil Whitehead noted, “As drinkers become increasingly knowledgeable about beer, they demand a greater choice to allow them to explore a range of flavours and styles.”

For now the Molson Coors – CRSB alliance extends only to the UK and Ireland. It is not yet known if the arrangement will be extended to other key global Molson Coors’ markets, notably Canada and the United States.

Snow, which was first brewed as recently in 1994, is the driving force of the fortunes of China Resources Breweries Limited. For the first six months of 2017 its beer volumes totalled 63.0 million hectolitres with approximately 90% of this volume accounted for by Snow and its brand variants.

As measured by any standard CSRB is a giant. It operates 98 breweries spread across 25 Chinese provinces, directly administered municipalities and autonomous regions. Its aggregate annual production capacity is approximately 220 million hectolitres.

All of this is sufficient to make CSRB the market leader in the China yet with what they calculate as a surprisingly modest 25.6% share of the country’s beer sales.

The Chinese market is consolidating with the top five companies accounting for 73.3% of sales. According to figures presented to financial analysts this summer, CSRB is followed by Tsingtao (17.2%), Anheuser-Busch InBev (16.2%), Beijing Yanjing (9.3%) and Carlsberg (5.0%).

The Beer World Cup

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