While the Bud Light social media fiasco continued to depress sales and profits in the U.S., Anheuser-Busch In Bev posted better-than-expected second-quarter worldwide profit on strengths in its other operating regions. Bud Light sales collapsed in April after transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney appeared in a promotional video for the brand, leading to several boycotts of the brand in the U.S.
But AB InBev CEO Michel Doukeris, during a conference call discussing the results, said that most U.S. consumers had no opinion on the controversy leading to Bud Light’s sales loss. He said the company reached out to 17,000 consumers since April and found most held favorable views about Bud Light, with 80% either favorable or neutral. (That would indicate the remaining 20% were heavy Bud Light drinkers, as the latest sales figures show sales declines near 30%, according to Beer Marketer’s Insights, citing Bump Williams Consulting.)
“Regardless of favorability, our consumers across all sentiment groups have three points of feedback in common,” Doukeris added. “One, they want to enjoy their beer without a debate. Two, they want Bud Light to focus on beer. Three, they want Bud Light to concentrate on the platforms that all consumers love, such as NFL, [veteran charity] Folds of Honor and music,” mentioning areas of recent Bud Light advertising.
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