SBD/March 18, 2011/Marketing and Sponsorship

A-B Says It Has Backup Plan If NFL Misses Games During Coming Season

A-B InBev CEO Carlos Brito said that the brewer "has a backup plan if NFL games are spiked" this upcoming season, according to Todd Frankel of the ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH. A-B's Bud Light brand will replace Coors Light as the NFL's official beer starting with the '11 season, part of a six-year sponsorship with the league. Brito said, "We've been thinking about, of course, developing a plan B in the unfortunate case (a work stoppage) happens." He declined to reveal "whether the brewer was obligated to pay even without a season." But an A-B spokesperson said that Bud Light "keeps its money if the NFL fails to play, allowing the brewer 'to reinvest those dollars to reach Bud Light consumers in other, relevant ways.'" Despite the new deal, Brito "sought to distance Bud Light's fortunes from those of the football league." He said, "Let's remind ourselves that Bud Light grew in the last three years without that property. It's a very good addition, a very important addition. But again, Bud Light grew even without the NFL" (ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH, 3/18).     
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