Thailand

Chang focuses on the mass-premium beer market

PHOTO: Chang Cold Brew is in focus as the company pushes to expand the mass-premium beer market. (via Tembela Bohle / Pexels)

Chang beer’s parent company, Chang International Co., is eyeing the mass-premium beer market to expand its catalogue and profits. The company announced plans to invest 1 billion baht to grow its beer business and strengthen its portfolio with Chang Cold Brew.

With the pandemic easing, the economy coming back, and tourism blooming, people are spending more on booze. Chang is striking while the iron is hot and pushing Chang Cold Brew.

Chang Cold Brew, its beer in the mass-premium category, was introduced to the market in 2019 and garnered a favourable reception from its customers. Despite being predominantly available in upscale restaurants and modern trade outlets, the company intends to expand its customer reach by concentrating on distributing Chang Cold Brew through conventional trade channels.

The goal of the company is to establish a distinctive brand identity for Chang Cold Brew. The mass-premium beer market in Thailand is worth 25 billion baht, about 12.5% of the overall beer market. They aim to broaden their consumer base and encourage more drinking occasions by launching new products with inventive packaging.

Lester Tan, the senior vice president and head of the beer business, stated that the marketing budget will prioritise traditional trade methods, channels, and innovation. The company seems to be recognizing that people are drinking on more than just special occasions. Tan said…

“This is also a nod towards the increasing trend in diverse drinking occasions; not only are consumers drinking at special celebratory events but also when spending time to chill out or share good times together.”

The exciting new packaging is expected to be launched in the fourth quarter of 2023. Chang Cold Brew also aims to promote its product through music concerts throughout the year in Thailand and abroad.

Chang Cold Brew aims to increase its sales contribution to 15% of the overall Chang beer portfolio this year. The mass-premium beer segment had strong growth potential in 2022, with a market value of 25 billion baht and an annual growth rate of 10%.

According to Tan, 80% of all beer is sold via traditional trade channels and the rest is via modern trade channels. So the company plans to focus on traditional trade channels and innovation to widen its consumer base.

Beer consumption has declined in Thailand by 10-15% for two consecutive years, in 2021 and 2022. Despite this, the beer market in the country experienced a 7% growth in the year 2023 on a year-to-date basis. The national beer market is valued at approximately 200 billion baht, which is 95% of the pre-pandemic level from 2019.

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Neill Fronde

Neill is a journalist from the United States with 10+ years broadcasting experience and national news and magazine publications. He graduated with a degree in journalism and communications from the University of California and has been living in Thailand since 2014.