CMBC acquires UK rights to Kronenbourg 1664

By Rebecca Weller

- Last updated on GMT

Special moment: CMBC completes deal with Heineken UK to acquire the UK rights for Kronenbourg
Special moment: CMBC completes deal with Heineken UK to acquire the UK rights for Kronenbourg

Related tags Beer Carlsberg group Heineken uk

Carlsberg Marston’s Brewing Company (CMBC) has completed a deal with Heineken UK to acquire the UK rights for French beer brand Kronenbourg.

Announced earlier this week (Wednesday 12 April), the agreement will see the Carlsberg Group obtain all rights to produce and distribute the well-known premium lager, Kronenbourg 1664, in the UK via CMBC, effective from Thursday 1 June 2023.

CMBC CEO Paul Davies said: “We’re delighted to announce our agreement to take responsibility for Kronenbourg 1664, reinforcing CMBC’s position as one of the most exciting brewers in the UK.

“Supporting brands and innovating in the premium category is a key pillar of our strategy and adding Kronenbourg 1664 to our enviable portfolio is an incredible opportunity to achieve this.

“Kronenbourg 1664 is an excellent beer with a distinctive provenance that is growing in both volume and value with strong brand awareness amongst consumers.

Special moment 

“We look forward to sharing our exciting plans to relaunch the brand with our partners in the on and off trade and cementing Kronenbourg 1664 as a leader in the category.”

Heineken​ UK has held the licence since 2008 following the acquisition of Scottish & Newcastle by Carlsberg and Heineken.

Under the new agreement, Heineken​ UK will contractually continue to brew and pack Kronenbourg 1664, which is owned globally by the Carlsberg Group, before moving to CMBC in 2024.

CMBC​ and Heineken UK stated the brands would “work closely to support a smooth transition for customers”.

Carlsberg Group global premium and beyond beer vice president Andrew Khan said the deal marked a “special moment” for those involved and presented an “incredible opportunity to energise the brand” and deliver growth within CMBC’s​ beer portfolio.

Khan continued: “As part of the Carlsberg Group globally, 1664 is enjoyed by customers all around the world and has seen strong and consistent performance in Europe and Asia, where we have been seeing strong double-digit growths in a number of key markets. 

Next chapter 

“We have enormous confidence in CMBC’s ambitious vision for 1664 in the UK and are excited for consumers to enjoy exceptional experiences with the brand.”

A three-year commercial arrangement has also been agreed to continue to list and provide the brand to Heineken UK’s Star Pubs & Bars​.

Heineken UK​ managing director Boudewijn Haarsma said: “We’ve been a strong custodian of Kronenbourg in the UK over the last 14-years, maintaining product quality and investing in its marketing and distribution as part of our portfolio.

“During this time, we have also been investing behind our premium brands, such as Birra Moretti, and taking ownership of super premium beers Beavertown and Brixton.”

This comes as Heineken UK last week exclusively revealed to The Morning Advertiser it would be bringing its Spanish lager, Cruzcampo​, the UK.

Haarsma added: “With a great brand range to offer our customers, now is the right time for Kronenbourg 1664 to enter its next chapter and we’re pleased to have reached this agreement with Carlsberg.”

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