Miller Beer will be pulled from the UK market at the beginning of next year because it is “no longer viable”. It follows a decision between Miller Brands UK and Scottish & Newcastle, which brews, markets and distributes the brand, to end their agreement.
A S&N statement says: “The decision to withdraw Miller Beer follows a review of the brand within the highly-competitive market in which it operates, which concluded that Miller Beer no longer has a viable long-term role to play in either company’s lager portfolio.”
Miller Beer has had no above-the-line support this year and it has no agency of record.
It was originally launched in UK as Miller Lite, by Courage, in the late Eighties. It was relaunched as Miller Pilsner in the early Nineties before being renamed Miller Beer under the stewardship of S&N, which took over the brand when it acquired the Courage business in 1995.
Lawson Mountstevens, sales managing director, on trade, S&N UK, says: “The decision to withdraw Miller Beer from sale in the UK will allow us to fulfil this objective by drawing upon the combined S&N / Heineken range to create new and greater sales opportunities for our customers in 2009.”
Nick Miller, managing director, Miller Brands UK, says however that the sales and marketing support for Miller Genuine Draft, which is a premium bottled lager, will be unaffected, with plans to strengthen investment in the brand next year.
Miller Genuine Draft is one of SABMiller’s four global flagship brands and is distributed in the UK by Miller Brands UK.