Guinness is reviewing the future of Kaliber, its alcohol-free lager
brand, as the market for low-alcohol beers continues to shrink.
Guinness is understood to be taking a strategic look at Kaliber over the
next few weeks and aims to make a decision early next year. The most
likely option is to retain the Kaliber brand, but alter the product.
A spokeswoman for Guinness admitted there were ’plans to develop the
brand’ but said Kaliber would not be axed, saying, ’It is an important
part of our portfolio.’
Kaliber is the market-leading brand in the low-alcohol sector, and
Guinness says sales have grown by 5% this year.
However, UK sales of low-alcohol beers have fallen from pounds 51m to
pounds 40m in the past few years, and now make up about 0.4% of the beer
Guinness has already begun to revive Kaliber, with its first advertising
campaign for four years in August, through newly appointed agency Abbott
Mead Vickers BBDO. The ads, which carried the theme: ’It’s drunk, you’re
not’, tied in with a government drink-drive campaign, which broke the
same week, also through AMV.
The move comes as Bass Brewers test-markets low-alcohol beer, Carling
Blue, with a view to launching it nationwide next year (Marketing,
Analysis, page 13.