The deal gives B2C exclusive rights in the on- and off-trade for the sales and distribution of Miller Genuine Draft in South Africa. The agreement will commence on 6 August 2021.
Miller was part of the SABMiller portfolio from 2002 to 2016, but was sold as part of regulatory requirements that Anheuser-Busch InBev required ahead of its $103bn acquisition of SAB in 2016.
Molson Coors bought the 58% stake in October 2016 for $12bn. From April 2017, Miller was then distributed locally by Heineken following an agreement between Heineken SA and Molson Coors.
Miller Genuine Draft, which has a strong US heritage, is a key global brand for Molson Coors, with availability in more than 50 countries worldwide. Molson Coors produces many well-known beer brands, including Miller, Coors Staropramen and BlueMoon. While the company’s roots lie in traditional beer brewing, Molson Coors now offers a portfolio that now expands beyond the beer aisle.
According to the companies, the new partnership brings SA's Miller consumers greater availability and activations in the SA market, and will be a key enabler of future brand growth. Through the deal, both Molson Coors and B2C will look at opportunities for new brand and innovation introductions, but in the immediate term the focus is on getting Miller back to the scale and growth it enjoyed in previous years.
Founded in South Africa in 2015, B2C distributes brands including Grolsch, Peroni, Buffalo Trace, Opihr Gin and Angostura. B2C states that the partnership with Molson Coors is a key step in its mission "to become a driving force within the South African beverage landscape and a competitive player in the industry", giving consumers a greater variety when it comes to their beverage choices.
Peter Hart, founder and director of B2C Premium Drinks Company comments, “This long-term strategic partnership with a global leading beverage company such as Molson Coors increases B2C’s relevance for its customers with a bigger basket and wider choice of international brands. The ultimate goal here is to grow the business and establish ourselves as another big player in the SA alcohol beverage scene. Watch this space for more exciting news.”
Ivan Zajsek Molson, Coors regional director Africa, Middle East and Central Asia says, “We are delighted to have entered into this long-term strategic partnership with B2C, which will certainly mark a new phase for our Miller brand in the South African market. We hope to continue to delight beer drinkers in South Africa with this iconic brand and look forward to growing Miller’s footprint and visibility across the whole of South Africa.
"Molson Coors wishes to thank its long-standing outgoing partner, Heineken, for all its efforts in relation to Miller Genuine Draft over the last few years. ”