Carlsberg-Tetley has ditched plans to launch a premium Castlemaine XXXX, claiming it would cannibalise sales of its successful Carlsberg Export lager.
Last year, Carlsberg-Tetley confirmed it was working on a project to upgrade the standard lager to about five per cent proof.
But in a U-turn, the company says the strength of Carlsberg Export sales decided it against the project. Castlemaine XXXX will remain at four per cent proof.
A company spokesman also says that Carlsberg-Tetley has recently been focusing on Carlsberg, which is the sponsor of the Euro 96 football championships.
The brand’s standard lager is being relaunched before the contest.
But the spokesman denies that support behind Castlemaine XXXX is being reduced.
“Spend is not being decreased. We are fully behind the brand,” he adds.
Sources say Carlsberg-Tetley is throwing the bulk of its advertising and marketing spend behind Carlsberg, in an effort to make it the company’s main brand.
It is understood that ad support for smaller brands such as Skol, Tuborg Gold and Oranjeboom has been dropped.
In a further move, Castlemaine XXXX will be sold in 440ml instead of 500ml cans. The company claims additional profits will be ploughed back into promotions.