Brewer targets on-trade growth

Molson Coors bolsters Scottish team and ramps up support for pubs

• Coors’ Scottish boss Hugo Mills.

By Gillian McKenzie

CARLING owner Molson Coors has bolstered its Scottish team as it bids to grow the business further north of the border and provide greater support for pub operators.

Hazel Mitchell will take up the newly-created role of regional account manager for Belhaven and MOP (multiple on-premise) accounts while Tom Cullen, currently head of new business development at Molson Coors, will also lead the development of Molson Coors’ wholesale network in Scotland. Cullen will work with the brewer’s major distributor Matthew Clark, which took over Coors’ free-trade distribution in Scotland last September, on key accounts and on the development of its craft beer portfolio.
It comes after the brewer appointed seven new field sales executives in Scotland at the turn of this year, and Hugo Mills as director of sales and operations for Molson Coors in Scotland.
According to Mills, who began his trade career with Tennent’s and then Heineken before moving to spirits firms Diageo and, most recently, Gruppo Campari, the expanded team will enable the brewer to “strengthen its relationships, service and performance” in the Scottish trade.
“We’re investing a significant amount in our people on the ground; we’ve got 30 in total – 15 from Coors and the same from Matthew Clark,” Mills told SLTN.
“These are guys out in the trade working with independent operators to drive footfall.
“We can help operators with developing menus, product ranging, fridge merchandising, how they can increase their margins, and so on.
“At the end of the day it’s all about working with the trade.”
It’s a strategy backed by a portfolio of brands, including Carling, Coors Light, Cobra and the Sharp’s range of beers, which Mills said caters for a broad range of outlets and consumers; and a distribution agreement with Matthew Clark which he said is “working really well”.
“We’ve got a very credible distributor in Matthew Clark – they provide us with a route to market which allows us to focus much more on the trade,” said Mills. “Matthew Clark is doing a great job for us. We work closely with Belhaven too, who have done a great job for us in Scotland.”
The aim is to continue to build on this, said Mills. “Our firm belief is that with the people and the unrivalled brand portfolio we have in Scotland, we will continue to offer a service that will enable retailers to create fantastic value and provide the next level of retailing experiences for themselves and their customers,” he added.