online marketing psychology

May 2, 2010

Ambev - Brands of Brazil

The World Cup allows us to have a month of summer in the middle of winter.
Ambev CFO Nelson Jamel
And normally summer is big business (think Carnival!) for a beer company. Especially for Ambev, which produces a big part of this beer.

Ambev was formed after the merger of Brahma and Antartica. Later the company merged with Belgian brewer Interbrew. And in 2009, with the integration of the American brewer Anheuser-Busch to become Anheuser-Busch Inbev, the biggest brewer in the world. The group is active all around the world and Ambev operates independently in South America.

Ambev is the biggest brewer in South America with Heineken as a main competitor. The company is most known for its beer operations but apart from the it is also the largest bottler of PepsiCo outside United States. It sells and distributes PepsiCo products in Brazil and other Latin American countries.

In the beer market, Ambev controls almost 70% of the market. It's closest competitor, Heineken is pumping its investments into Latin America but its  market share is still less then 10% in Brazil.


First of all it has its corporate brand. But this brand is not visible for the consumers. That is where the 75 other brands and brand extensions of the company come in.


Skol is the biggest brand with around 32% of the market. Tagline: A cerveja que desce redondo (The beer that goes down round) This element, the rounded smoothness has been used is many of its advertising. A sexy, humorous image. Ideal to make every activity more fun. This also positions them towards younger public, the sponsorship of an electronic music festival (Skol Sensation) is the illustration of that.

Brahma is the number two with a market share of 19,2%. The brand tries to appeal to be the friend of everybody, Joe Average. Efforts to export this beer to the rest of the world have seen mixed results.

The third Ambev beer brand is Antarctica, which has  12,6% of the market.

In the premium segment Ambev is represented by Bohemia, Original, a sub-brand by Antarctica and Stella Artois, the Belgian import brand.

soft drinks

Soccer is the main interest of Brazilians. So it is no surprise that many of these brands are tied around players and teams.

GuaranĂ¡ Antarctica
After Coca-Cola it is the best selling soft drink in Brazil and leader within its category. It uses famous footballer Ronaldo in its commercials

The licensing agreement with PepsiCo means that Ambev is also responsible for brands such as Pepsi, Lipton Ice Tea and Gatorade. This last brand sponsors many of the major soccer clubs in Brazil.

Ambev has a good presence for certain of its brand on the social media scene. For Skol and Guarana Antarctica, two of its brands that appeal to a younger audience.

More Brands of Brazil!
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  1. Why has AMBEV removed Guarana Antartica from the US Market?

  2. Hi Anonymous.
    I tried looking for an answer but couldn't find anything. Pulling a product from a market usually gets a lot less attention. (I wrote about this for the Brahma brand)

    This is guesswork but the US market is pretty full as it is. Dominated by the big players, the top five brands almost have 50% of the market.

    A WSJ article talks about the size of the US soda market decreasing because of things like health concerns. This puts bigger pressure on the margins.

    And that seem though survival conditions for a brand that hasn't proven to work.

  3. I have found a Brazil market here in South Florida (Pompano Beach) that always has Guarana Antarctica as well as about 6 other Guarana based sodas. It is a bit pricey are $14 for a 12 pack with the others at about $8 a 12 pack. In trying them out, GA is the best with a brand called Schwinn(sp) a close second.

    I am surprised that AMBEV does not distribute it more as just about everyone I know really enjoys it and will go out of their way to get it. At least I can get it easily to keep in stock ...