Red Stripe and Corona end deal with Wells and Young's

05 October, 2010

Bedford brewer Wells and Young’s has announced that both Red Stripe and Corona Extra will be moving back to their respective brand owners next year.

A spokeswoman said Grupo Modelo have not yet announced who will be taking on the distribution of Corona Extra and their other brands. Red Stripe's owner Diageo will be taking over its brand next summer.

The brewer has had a 30 year term with Red Stripe and a 15 year term with Corona Extra.

A spokeswoman for Wells and Young's told OLN: "At the moment we are going into a period of consultation with our Employee Consultative Group and Trade Unions, where we will look at ways of reducing costs.

"At the moment it is too early to speculate on potential redundancies."

Paul Wells, chairman of Wells and Young’s Brewing Company, said: “Both brands are in great shape and have had outstanding sales in the last few years, as have our ale brands. We always knew both contracts could expire in 2011, and we have planned accordingly.

“I know that everyone in the company is really proud of having grown these brands to the iconic positions they hold today, and I think that is a fitting tribute to the teamwork and expertise of our people here at Wells and Young’s.

“So from here, Young’s, Bombardier and Courage and our other partner brands, Kirin Ichiban, Estrella Damm and Erdinger, will get even more focus.”

A statement from Diageo said: "Diageo Great Britain can confirm we are in discussions with Wells and Young’s regarding the management of the Red Stripe Jamaica lager beer brand in Great Britain.

"Diageo owns a majority share in Desnoes and Geddes (the owner of the Red Stripe brand) and Wells and Young’s has managed the brand in GB for thirty years on our behalf. The contract between Desnoes and Geddes and Wells and Young’s ends in August 2011 and it has been decided not to extend the current contract beyond that date, at which point Diageo GB will be taking responsibility for the brand.

"In the last 10 years, Wells and Young’s has grown Red Stripe to become one of the most sought after premium lager brands in the UK. With Red Stripe’s roots dating back to 1928 in Kingston, Jamaica, the beer has long embodied the rich history of Jamaica, its music and culture and has a strong consumer following around the world."

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