West Midlands brewer Marston’s sold 350,000 pints of a beer specially brewed for the Ashes – the latest success of its tie-in with the England cricket team.
The sales of Ashes Ale made it the best-selling seasonal beer ever sold by Wolverhampton-based Marston’s, which caught the eye with a punchy advertising campaign timed to go out along with the sporting successes of the England team.
Earlier this summer, the brewer said sales of bottled Marston’s Pedigree, which is the official beer of England cricket, had more than doubled because of the Ashes.
The marketing campaign involved hefty promotion of Marston’s range of beers at games, as well as making Pedigree the only ale available at the grounds hosting the games.
It also saw banners with cheeky straplines including “England has history. Australia has previous”.
Marston’s marketing manager Des Gallagher said: “As a passionate supporter of the England team, we’ve always had faith that victory over the Aussies was in the making.
“Now our faith and loyalty have been rewarded not only with a historic victory, but with the knowledge that more cricket fans than ever before have chosen Pedigree to accompany the world class action.
“The victory is even more sweet as it comes on our 175th anniversary of brewing. We can’t thank the boys enough for a winning test series we’ll always remember.”
The brewery and pub group, formerly Wolverhampton & Dudley Breweries, said it had seen respectable trading even though the recession and disappointing summer weather had hit the industry as a whole.
It is the most popular brewer of bottled ale in the country, with a 17.9 per cent marketing share.
The pub management side of the firm slowed its new build programme last year but the completion of a £165 million rights issue in recent weeks means it expects to develop around 60 new managed pubs over the next three years.
Marston’s in its current incarnation was formed when Wolverhampton & Dudley changed its name in 2007. The name was changed to reflect the company’s best-known products, the Marston’s range of beers brewed in Burton upon Trent.
The company also makes a number of other well-known lines of beer, including Banks’s, Jennings and Wychwood, either owned by itself or through subsidiaries.
It began its association with cricket in 2006, when it signed a deal with the England and Wales Cricket Board to become the official beer of the England cricket team.