Today in our Marketer Interview feature, Portada talks with Randy Ranson (photo), SVP for Latin America of SABMiller. Ranson explains SABMiller´s plans in the region and what their challenges and expectations are.
Portada: In which Latin American countries do you have a presence?
Randy Ransom: “SABmiller has presence in 25 countries of the region. We own seven brewing companies in Peru, Ecuador, Panama, San Salvador, Honduras and Argentina; and in 18 countries SABmiller brands are operated by licensed distributors. Also, the company bottles soft drinks for The Coca-Cola Company in El Salvador and Honduras, and for Pepsico International in Panama.”
Portada: How do you structure your marketing unit over the region?
Randy Ransom: “We keep all marketing at a local level. Each country has a marketing director and each office works with an ad agency. We do not cross markets between them. Actually, our beers are globally 97% local brands.”
Portada: What is the share of Latin American revenues?
Randy Ransom: “Latin America brings 22% of the total revenues. It is the same share for South Africa, while Europe and North America bring 19 and 18% respectively.”
Portada: What are your expectations for the following years?
Randy Ransom: “For the last 2, 3 years the region has been growing above the average, I see the same growth rate for the next 3 years. The beer industry is a very hands-on business where growth takes time and effort, so while growth will continue. It will take smart and calculated planning and execution”.
Portada: Do you plan to expand your operations to other markets?
Randy Ransom: “We want to buy distributors in Mexico and Brazil, but only at the right price. We bought a small brewery Issenbeck in Argentina at a low of only 3% of market share and we will try to rebuild it to the 10% that it used to be”
Portada: Which is the importance of the digital marketing?
Randy Ramson: “I think digital marketing is key, but moving with very precise strategies. We work with Facebook on a brand level. Ideas matter and executing that idea is essential”.
Portada: What are your challenges for next year?
Randy Ransom: “The challenge is the market evolution. As the middle class grows household income, it tends to move to acquire other higher cost social drinks.”