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Get excited beer lovers because international beer brand, Budweiser is launching in Nigeria in 2018.

Brand owner, Anheuser-Busch InBev (AB InBev) is set to launch the premium lager into the Nigerian market as part of its long-term investment since taking over the business of SAB Miller.

AB InBev already owns the Hero and Trophy lager brands, which have recorded enormous sales in the past couple of years.

Interestingly, Budweiser might not have an official launch party like most other beverage brands in Nigeria. Recall how Hero Lager was introduced to the market? The brand capitalised late Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu’s heroic status in the East and launched the product during his burial. As a matter of fact, it was not a ‘launch’ per se, it was more of a massive release during the burial of the Biafran War hero.

With Nigeria’s Super Eagles qualifying for the FIFA World Cup in Russia, and Budweiser being official sponsors of the Mundial, our fingers are crossed regarding what sneaky marketing technique will be used to introduce the lager to Nigerians.

AB InBev’s decision to introduce Budweiser alongside Beck’s into the Nigerian market is hinged on creating stiff competition for Nigerian Breweries’ Heineken and Star Lager. Where does that point us? A triangular beer war between AB InBev, NB Plc, and Guinness Nigeria in the coming year.

Also, the merger between International Breweries Plc (based in Ilesha), Intafact Breweries Ltd (based in Onitsha), and Pabod Breweries Ltd (based in Port Harcourt) was completed early this year with the final company to be known as International Breweries Plc.

Budweiser’s launch coincides with the launch of a newly-completed “over $250 million” brewery in Sagamu by 2018.

“We are investing in a fourth brewery, a large brewery outside of Lagos, in the Sagamu area that will come online next year and it’s our largest brewery in Africa outside of South Africa,” said, Annabelle Degroot, Managing Director-designate of International Breweries Plc.

AB InBev acquired SAB Miller Nigeria, ex-owners of the three merged companies, in a deal reportedly valued at $106 billion in 2016.

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