In the all-important US market, the #1 imported brew still comes from south of the border. Mexico's Corona pushed Heineken into second place in 1997, and has steadily increased its lead ever since, becoming one of the world's biggest beers as well as its home country's single most valuable brand, according to Interbrand. For years, US giant Anheuser-Busch derived an indirect benefit from this success, as a result of an investment stake of just over 50% in Corona's owner, Grupo Modelo. In 2012, following Anheuser-Busch's acquisition by InBev, the enlarged group made an offer to acquire the remaining shares in Modelo to take full control of the business. That deal was challenged by competition regulators, obliging AB InBev to surrender rights to Corona in the US to Constellation Brands. As a result, ownership is now split between those two companies. AB InBev owns Corona and Modelo's other Mexican beers in all markets except the US, taking back international rights from previous partners such as Carlsberg or Molson Coors. Grupo Modelo - wholly owned by AB InBev - remains the biggest brewer by far in Mexico with around 58% local share from Corona and supporting brands including Modelo Especial, Pacifico and Victoria. AB InBev also distributes Corona, Modelo and some of the other brands in all its other global markets. However, Constellation Brands has perpetual rights within the US to the same portfolio. Corona is one of the few beers to have reported steady and continuing growth in the US in recent years, elevating making Constellation the local #3 brewer behind Anheuser-Busch and MillerCoors with around 9% market share. The main Corona Extra brand is supported by a collection of variants including Corona Light, mid-calorie Corona Premier and malt-based Corona Refresca. Corona Seltzer launched in summer 2020. Corona was the #6 US beer by volumes in 2019 and stablemate Modelo Especial was the #7. Felipe Ambra is global VP for Corona at AB InBev. Paul Hetterich is president of Constellation's beer division.
Capsule checked 28th August 2020
Adbrands Account Assignments track account management for the world's leading brands and companies, including details of which advertising agency handles which accounts in which countries for major markets
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Which agencies handle advertising for Corona? Find out more from Adbrands Account Assignments
Who are the competitors of Corona? See Alcoholic Beverages Sector for other companies
Historical profile information for Corona Extra
Recent stories from Adbrands Update:
Adbrands Social Media 24th Apr 2019: "The Fish". Star animator Adam Pesapane - better known as PES - teamed up with Wieden & Kennedy Amsterdam for this great video to support the clean beaches initiative run by activist group Parley for Oceans and sponsored by Corona beer. The release was coincided to tie in with Earth Day this week. "A lot of the work Corona has done to date has been clean-ups and community engagement on the ground to protect paradise, so we can continue to enjoy it," said Corona brand director Evan Ellman. "This Earth Day, we wanted to leverage Corona's influence as a global brand and connect with our consumers on this issue in a unique, unexpected way. The collaboration with PES is a perfect tribute to Corona and Parley's ongoing and shared commitment to tackle plastic waste that pollutes our oceans and endangers over 800 animal species."
Adbrands Social Media 27th Mar 2019: "La Cerveza Mas Fina". The team at British creative factory Arch Model Studios is in big demand these days in the wake of their contribution to Wes Anderson's 'Isle of Dogs' movie, among other projects. Here's the second ad in two weeks that features their handicraft, a spot for Corona Extra in Mexico. (We featured the new Sipsmith Gin ad here last week). This Corona ad is a truly international affair, conceived by US shop Observatory - the former CAA Marketing, now owned by Mark Penn's Stagwell Group - with animation and production in the UK by Nexus Studios. But it's Arch Models' work which really makes the spot: 71 miniature characters, eight fantastically detailed sets and 350 individually made miniature glass bottles of beer. Fabulous.
Adbrands Weekly Update 19th May 2016: Ads Of The Week: "Lime Ritual". In the best and most-retrocool way, Wieden & Kennedy Amsterdam's pan-European campaign for Corona Extra is like the ultimate distillation of those 70s cinema ads that always showed you ultra close-ups of alcoholic beverages splashing onto giant rocks of ice while the "beautiful people" played in the surf. In fact, we can't imagine a better way of watching it than with a wraparound Cinemascope screen for the fully immersive sensual experience. Fabulous photography and sound design. Summer's here. Dive in.
Adbrands Social Media 7th Jan 2016: "Without Borders". AB InBev celebrates the 90th anniversary of its recently acquired Corona beer with this splendid and imaginative spot from Leo Burnett Mexico. Some of the national characteristics of countries visited by our titular hero might rankle slightly (British pubs and darts and a Queen who is not our Queen for example) but you can't help but be charmed by the end results.
Adbrands Weekly Update 29th Jan 2015: Mexican imports continued to chip away at American beers' market share last year according to new figures from IRI for off-trade sales. Constellation's Crown Imports scored a near 8% gain in sales of its Corona Extra to $1.3bn, while stablemate Modelo Especial jumped 26% to $731m, joining the top ten beers for the first time, above Heineken. However the Dutch brewer's Dos Equis was also a very strong performer, with sales to $6.1bn, but Coors Light and Budweiser, the #2 and #3 respectively at $2.4bn and $2.2bn, both lost sales. AB InBev's best performer was Michelob Ultra Light, which gained 12% in dollar value to $905m.
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