Anheuser-Busch InBev will triple its marketing spending on Bud Light this summer as part of an effort to prop up the top-selling beer brand, which is bleeding sales and market share in the wake of consumer uproar over a partnership with transgender influencer.
AB InBev CEO Michel Doukeris addressed Bud Light’s Dylan Mulvaney controversy for the first time during a conference call reviewing the brewer’s first-quarter financial results Thursday morning. He said that the brewer was marshaling global resources to support the U.S. He attempted to downplay the influencer marketing that ignited right-wing outrage, which involved Mulvaney posting on Instagram a custom can Bud Light sent her with an image of her face on it.
“We will need to continue to clarify the fact that this was one can, one influencer, one post, and not a campaign, and repeat this message for some time,” Doukeris said, later suggesting there is “misinformation and confusion” about what Bud Light did.
He did not articulate the brewer's position on LGBTQ+ rights. The company has come under increased pressure from progressive groups for failing to defend Mulvaney as she has been the target of conservative anger.