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SABMiller to launch Peroni Nastro Azzurro in Japan

4 September 2007

SABMiller plc, one of the world’s leading brewers, today announces the launch of its premium Italian beer, Peroni Nastro Azzurro, in Japan. This is the brand’s first entry into the East Asian market.
To mark the occasion there will be a launch party on September 4 in Toyko’s Instituto Italiano di Cultura. To establish the brand’s credibility and to reinforce its Italian style positioning, PNA will host a catwalk featuring Francesca Versace’s Central St Martin’s graduate collection – showing for the first time to an audience of Japan’s leading fashion commentators and opinion formers.

The company is investing in promoting the brand in Japan over the coming year to greatly increase its presence and consumer awareness. This will be supported by a strong marketing campaign that will communicate the effortless Italian style proposition. Nippon Beer, Japan’s leading importer of bottled beer, will be responsible for distribution.

Japan is the world’s third largest economy with a population of 127 million. It acts as a beacon for Asia in terms of consumer sophistication and setting new trends.  Japanese consumers love all things Italian associating their goods with glossy, high-end quality and luxury.

Japan ranks number five globally for beer consumption – consuming 63.6 million hectolitres per year. Imported international brands are growing strongly from a low base, offering Peroni Nastro Azzurro tremendous potential to increase market share. SABMiller hopes Peroni will become a top tier brand in the country over the next five years.

Chris Taylor, SABMiller International Brand Director for Peroni Nastro Azzurro, commented:

“Japanese urban consumers are very stylish and extremely interested in high quality and design. They also show a real appetite for Italian brands. Peroni Nastro Azzurro represents the finest Italian quality, craftsmanship and design. As such we believe there will be an appreciative audience in Japan for Peroni Nastro Azzurro’s superior taste and Italian style credentials”

Peroni Nastro Azzurro is part of SABMiller’s global premium brand portfolio which also includes Pilsner Urquell and Miller Genuine Draft.

Notes to editors

About Peroni Nastro Azzurro
SABMiller acquired a majority interest in Birra Peroni in May 2003.  For decades a favourite with Italian beer drinkers, in 2005 Peroni set out to change people’s perceptions of traditional beer drinking and re-launched as Peroni Nastro Azzurro with a sleek new look that reflected its authentic Italian heritage.  The rebranding enabled Peroni to be relaunched across the world, but the beer has always retained its original cool, crisp and refreshing taste.  To support the brand re-launch, SABMiller announced the global brand strategy for Peroni Nastro Azzurro which kicked off in London with ‘Emporio Peroni’ – an exclusive non-shop boutique. Situated on London’s Sloane Street, a single bottle of Peroni was showcased on an illuminated plinth in a blank white retail space, captivating passers by who could look but not enter the shop.  It was estimated that 63 million people around the world saw or heard the resulting news stories. The same groundbreaking marketing activation has since appeared in the US, Poland, Peru and Puerto Rico.

Building on the success of Peroni’s 2005 re-launch, SABMiller invested $50 million to support the brand’s global communications campaign in 2006.  As part of the global campaign, the trailblazing Italian lager delighted audiences with its remake of Federico Fellini’s classic film, La Dolce Vita.  In paying homage to this icon of Italian cinema, Peroni also affirmed its place in the history of Italian style. 

SABMiller plc is one of the world’s largest brewers with brewing interests or distribution agreements in over 60 countries across six continents. The group’s brands include premium international beers such as Miller Genuine Draft, Peroni Nastro Azzurro and Pilsner Urquell, as well as an exceptional range of market leading local brands.  Outside the USA, SABMiller plc is also one of the largest bottlers of Coca-Cola products in the world.

In the year ended 31 March 2007, the group reported US$3,154 million adjusted pre-tax profit and revenue of US$18,620 million.  SABMiller plc is listed on the London and Johannesburg stock exchanges.

This announcement is available on the company website:

High resolution images are available for the media to view and download free of charge from or

SABMiller plc
Tel: +44 20 7659 0100

Isabel Unsworth
Media Relations Manager, SABMiller plc
Tel: +44 20 7659 0131

Sarah Stringfellow
Peroni Nastro Azzurro International Press Office
Tel: +44 7859 004236

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