Certainly, when we gather to celebrate the happiest moments of life, we count on various forms of liquors and alcoholic beverages to raise a toast. Amongst those alcoholic beverages, beer is considered as the communal one, as it is a drink of moderation. A cold pint of beer becomes the adaptable option when it comes to drinking at social events. Every moment of life should be celebrated with beer, believes Anheuser-Busch InBev, a multinational drink and brewing holdings company. Anheuser-Busch InBev is building a company to last, brewing beer, and building brands that will continue to bring people together for the next 100 years and beyond.
In an interview with Insights Success, Michael Codd, the Marketing and Innovation Lead, of Anheuser-Busch InBev of its European operations, shares his key insights on how the company is leveraging new technologies to better engage with its consumers, partners, customers, colleagues, and beer lovers around the world.
Below are the highlights of an interview:
Give a brief overview of the company, its vision.
We are the largest beer producer in the world and amongst the world’s biggest consumer goods companies. We live by the motto “Bringing people together, for a better world.” You can break this down in its two components. We see beer as the heart and soul of social gatherings; it features in some of the best moments in history and in people’s lives.
We want socializing with beer to be the catalyst for a more connected, happier and peaceful world. The better world part is hugely important as well. We have committed publicly to very ambitious goals around clean energy and our brands try to do well for the world, like Stella partnering with water.org, Corona helping to clean up our beaches or Leffe supporting local monasteries.
What inspired Anheuser-Busch InBev to enter into its respective segment?
Well we are amongst the oldest companies to work in this segment. But the beer industry is a really exciting place to be. It plays a meaningful role in people’s lives and is less turbulent than many other products. In good times, people celebrate by having a beer; in bad times they will still enjoy to have a good quality brew.
What are the cutting-edge products/services offered by Anheuser-Busch InBev?
We are constantly trying to innovative and reinvent the way we do business across all functions. In the brewing process, we have found innovative ways to save up to 20% energy consumption, in supply we have high-gates optimizing warehouse space, on the road we are a huge investor in electric trucks and testing blockchain. For our customers we try to provide an Amazon-like web portal service and for the consumer we are developing mixed reality solutions and digitally printed bottles.
What strategies has Anheuser- Busch InBev undertaken to stay ahead of the competition?
In many countries in the West, the beer industry has been flat for several years now. As such, we have been segmenting the market to see which segment have strong growth and really shifting our focus towards that. As a result, we have a strong focus on premium and non-alcoholic beverages, to name two.
Describe the experiences, achievements or lessons learnt that has shaped the journey of the company.
We have historically done very well with our organic growth but we have also achieved a portion of our growth through M&A. We have learned that it’s advantageous to be able to enter new markets or gain new brands, but that is not the most important thing. The most important thing we inherit with joining forces is the people that come with it. New colleagues have brought fresh ideas, different perspective and healthy debates about how to continue improving.
Where does Anheuser-Busch InBev sees itself in the long run and what are its future goals?
We want to continue performing well and being a responsible corporate citizen. Only by doing good for the world will you survive to live the next 100+ years and we would to make our contribution to a better world.
About the Leader
Michael Codd is leading the innovative projects of Anheuser- Busch InBev of its European operations. Meanwhile, he also helps some technology start-ups in Belgium and UK. He is responsible for the IT strategy for Marketing in Zone Europe and is working on some innovation projects that will help transform his company into the digital age and contribute to its exponential growth.
Prior to Anheuser-Busch InBev, Michael has spent his career in getting a better understanding of large corporations in consumer goods during his time as a consultant. At the same time, he was also working together with some startups with a focus on their sales and marketing.