Carlsberg drives beer category through collaboration

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Aldata: working with Carlsberg on range management and price optimisation

Aldata: working with Carlsberg on range management and price optimisation

Carlsberg is driving the drinks category through retail collaboration, according to Robert Edwards, group sales development director.

Speaking at Aldata’s Gold User Association event in Ireland, 28-29 September 2011, Edwards told delegates how Carlsberg – the number one beer brand in Eastern Europe – is working to maximise sales growth.

Edwards said 80% of shoppers plan their purchases in advance but 70% of shoppers choose their beer in store.

Edwards said the Carlsberg strategy was focused on four key areas:

  • assortment optimisation and merchandising
  • consumer occasions
  • shopping missions 
  • execution hotspots

In terms of the assortment, Edwards said the 80:20 rule applies to beer but the company uses range manager to optimise sales and there are “massive distribution opportunities” in putting more skus on shelves in more stores.

In terms of merchandising, Edwards said Carlsberg wanted to use all of the levers at its disposal, maximise the price opportunities and analyse promotions.

According to Edwards, there are four to five key occasions for beer, such as watching a football match or a dinner party, accounting for 90% of sales; while there are a variety of shopping missions which influence what a shopper is going to do.

In terms of hotspots, Edwards said display was not just focused on the beer aisle but identifying secondary placements is also key.

Edwards presented a video designed to stimulate beer opportunities in the convenience sector and revealed results of promotional initiatives in Europe. They included one in France targeting two shopping missions in one outlet with big packs on promotion and smaller, full priced packs merchandised alongside. Edwards said sales increased by 10% and there was an uplift in sales on the smaller, full priced packs.

In Eastern Europe, branded Carlsberg coolers drove a 12% increase in sales; while a cooler with video to stimulate occasions promoted the launch of a new cider in Denmark.

From the UK, Edwards revealed putting beer next to a hot chicken counter and using a sandwich chiller to merchandise beer and ready meals had driven an 831% uplift in sales.