Guinness Nigeria Plc, a leading brewing company and subsidiary of Diageo Plc, has become the number one market for the Guinness Foreign Extra Stout brand by net sales. This announcement was made last week Thursday with the release of an impressive end of year results from Diageo Plc that saw an increase in organic net sales of Guinness in Africa by 7 per cent.
Guinness Foreign Extra Stout was first exported to Sierra Leone as far back as 1827, and has since grown to become one of the largest beer brands on the continent selling 34 bottles a second.
Nigeria was home to the first brewery to produce Guinness Foreign Extra Stout outside of the British Isles in 1963 when their Ikeja brewery was built. This beer is now exported into Great Britain where the reported net sales is now well over half a billion naira and is partly responsible for the latest accolade as the largest Guinness stout market in the world.
Since 1963 Guinness Foreign Extra Stout has soared in popularity so much so that significant investments of £225 million were made during the past year to expand production capacity at its brewery sites in Ogba and Benin and further support its growth potential in Nigeria to meet the growing demand for Guinness Foreign Extra Stout and Guinness Nigeria Plc’s leading lager brand Harp.
Inspired by a legacy of Guinness advertising, demand for Guinness has also been driven by some ground-breaking marketing activations and consumer engagement initiatives in Nigeria and Africa as a whole. Football is a passion shared by Nigerians and has been a key association with which to connect with Guinness consumers. In November 2010, Guinness Nigeria launched GUINNESS VIP, a social engagement platform accessible via mobile phone through which consumers are able to access exclusive football content, chat live with friends, other fans and football celebrities, share stories and win prizes. Now with over one million users, it is already one of Nigeria’s fastest growing mobile platforms and set to become the biggest branded mobile site in Africa.
Seni Adetu, CEO and managing director, Guinness Nigeria Plc, said: “This is a great achievement which demonstrates the strength of Guinness in Nigeria, the love the consumers have for this great brand and the dedication and commitment of Guinness Nigeria employees who have worked hard to maintain its premium position despite a difficult economic environment. We are proud to be called Guinness Nigeria and to sell a brand that celebrates Nigerian values of power, goodness and communion.”
Nick Blazquez, president, Diageo Africa commented: “Guinness is at the heart of our participation in beer in Africa and we will continue to invest in the brand, its marketing and its distribution to make sure it delights new and existing consumers across the continent. We have an ambition for Guinness to become the number one beer brand in Africa by value, and this is a key milestone in achieving it.”