Belfast Telegraph

Rugby World Cup: Guinness 'banned' due to £20 million Heineken deal

Rugby fans will be unable to get a pint of the black stuff at the World Cup when it kicks off today.

Guinness has made up half of all pints sold at Twikenham in recent years. But a £20 million tie up with World Cup sponsor Heineken means that only Heineken-owned beers will be sold inside the 13 stadiums hosting the games in England and Wales.

Heineken's answer to Guinness, Murphy's Stout will be sold instead. The stadiums will also sell Heineken-owned beers John Smiths, Strongbow and Bulmers.

All will cost £5 a pint, rather than the cheaper £4 pints at Premier League matches, according to The Daily Mail.

Heineken has taken extra precautions to make sure it maximises profits from the games. It has managed to secure an exclusion zone meaning that only Heineken brews can be sold within 500 metres of the stadiums.

Pubs within the exclusion zones can continue selling rival beers – like Guinness – as usual. But Heineken has set up pop up bar and enlisted an army of sellers to walk the streets to try and promote its own brand.

Rival brewers have taken out advertising on nearby billboards to try and combat Heineken’s blanket approach.

Guinness is unlikely to be worried, if it's World Cup advertising campaign is anything to go by. The Diego-owned drink’s ‘Made of More’ campaign explored the transformative power of rugby – and beer – through the personal struggle of two star rugby players.


Independent News Service