MILLER BREWING TO CUT 20% OF HEADQUARTERS STAFF

Elimination of 200 Jobs Part of Sweeping Reorganization

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CHICAGO (AdAge.com) -- SABMiller said it would cut 200 jobs, or 20% of the corporate office staff,
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at Miller Brewing Co. as part of a realignment of the Milwaukee-based unit.

In May, SABMiller President-CEO Norman Adami said the company would take three years to turn the brand around. South African Breweries bought Miller from Philip Morris Cos. 13 months ago, creating SABMiller.

'Detailed assessment'
"Given the context of our new business priorities and turnaround plans, a very detailed assessment of the organization has taken place over the past few months," Mr. Adami said. "This redesign is not just about a staffing reduction but also about multiple role and job changes. It's about alignment of the organization."

Miller is the No. 2 beer marketer in the U.S. but its sales and market share have been declining for several years. Archrival Anheuser-Busch Cos., which is No. 1 in the field, controls about half of the domestic beer market.

Cuts take effect Sept. 1
Miller positions are being cut or merged Sept. 1 across the organization. A spokesman said the restructuring was just one of several initiatives, from sales and distribution to cost improvements, designed to improve the brand's market performance.

The spokesman also indicated the company is rethinking its portfolio of brands, which includes Miller Genuine Draft, Miller Lite and Pilsner Urquell, and their marketing efforts.

Meanwhile, the company has continued its agency review for overall corporate branding efforts. Last week, the brewer met with general market and Hispanic market finalists, with follow-up sessions scheduled for this week.

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