SBD/27/Sponsorships Advertising Marketing

JOHN LABATT SIGNS ON AS THE NEW SHERIFF OF NOTTINGHAM

     John Labatt Ltd. has signed a multi-million dollar, three-
year deal to become the exclusive sponsor of the Nottingham
Forest soccer club in Great Britain.  The deal makes Nottingham
"the first English soccer club to be sponsored exclusively by a
Canadian beer brand."  The team, "one of England's most famous
and successful soccer clubs," will play all of its games for the
next three years with the Labatt name emblazoned across its
jerseys.  The company also "is now the sole beer supplier" at
Nottingham's refurbished stadium.  David Radford, Labatt U.K.
marketing manager:  "Labatt is attempting to position itself as a
premium lager brand in Britain" (Peter Kennedy, FINANCIAL POST,
9/22).
     U.S. BEER INVASION CRITICIZED:  This morning's FINANCIAL
POST also reports that "a U.S. attempt to invade the lucrative
Quebec beer market has gone flat" according to Canadian market
analysts.  Michel Gadbois, Dir of the Quebec Association of Food
Retailers:  "Many retailers in Quebec are thinking of reducing or
eliminating their stock of American beer because the stuff simply
isn't selling."  Stroh Brewery Co. -- the 4th-largest in the U.S.
-- received permission last Spring from Quebec's liquor
commission to begin selling Old Milwaukee, Schlitz, and Red Bull
in grocery stores.  Since then the company has "picked up about
1.7 percent of the Quebec market."  Jacques Kavafian, analyst
with Levesque, Beaubien, Geoffrion:  "When a new beer comes onto
the Quebec market with the weight of somebody like Stroh behind
it, you'd think it would pick up a strong chunk of sales, but
Stroh did very little promotion up here and sales were flat."
Stroh VP Christopher Sortwell:  "We're in Canada and Quebec for
the long term" (FINANCIAL POST, 9/22)
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