Niche work if you can get it

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Related tags: Beer, Lager

A number of other premium brands have successfully carved out niche markets but are unlikely to be challenging the big four just yet. Budvar has a...

A number of other premium brands have successfully carved out niche markets but are unlikely to be challenging the big four just yet. Budvar has a loyal following, as do German lagers like Warsteiner, Bitburger and Holsten Export. Regional brewer Badger, based in Dorset, meanwhile brews its own premium lager brand, Hofbrau Premium at 5% abv. Television sports lovers could not have failed to take notice of Hasseröder, a 4.8% abv premium lager, which, through its association with Matchroom Sport, has been sponsoring hours of televised darts, snooker and pool, plus touring car championships and show jumping events at Hickstead. The company's marketing controller, Peter Martin, says the Matchroom sponsorship, which was launched in April, had raised the brand's profile considerably. Martin observes: "We're the fifth biggest brewer in Germany, but we have adapted the brand's look to suit the UK market. We decided to take a different approach instead of harping on about it being an authentic German product. "Instead, we have become closely associated with the sort of sports that pub customers get involved with. Now, our brand is clearly identifiable with major stars such as darts player Phil Taylor and snooker's Steve Davis. "It has lifted our profile and we are now in hundreds of quality outlets in both draught and bottled form in this country, and an increasing number of regional brewers and pub companies are taking us.

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