Murphys Brewery

924 Words4 Pages


This case examines the marketing of Murphy’s Irish Stout at the time of the merger between Guinness and Grand Metropolitan. Murphy Brewery is owned by Heineken International and has expanded its scope beyond Ireland in recent years. However, the brand is a distant second internationally to Guinness in the stout category. Furthermore, the company has launched a new brand—Murphy’s Irish Amber.

This case discusses the Murphy’s situation in Ireland, the UK, and Europe, as well as the United States. One of the issues to be examined is whether the company should have similar positioning worldwide.

Key Issues

Marketing Strategy Questions—This case is intended to address the marketing strategy
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The date that Murphy’s was established—1856—is included on the front panel as well as the Murphy’s family crest below the date. The back panel contains the historical perspective on the MIS product and the product quality emphasis. The U.S. government mandated warning is shown on both labels from the U.S. Furthermore, the warning to not drink directly from the bottle is an example of the company taking an ethical posture.

Exhibit 4 shows that Heineken is a major worldwide player in the beer market. Its percentage of 89% export is the highest of all brewers. Its size is only 60% of AB.

Exhibit 5 depicts the GMG brands. The size of Guinness compared to Murphy’s is much larger. The fact that with the merger GMG has Bailey’s Irish Creme in its stable of brands is significant.

Exhibit 6 shows the most popular imported brands in the U.S. The Murphy’s size of the market can be calculated from the two sets of numbers by multiplying the gallons from Ireland in 94, 95 and 96 by 2.25 and subtracting the Guinness numbers from them.

Exhibit 7 - The Wall Street Journal article captures the current strategy of Guinness and its recent success in the U.S. Students can be encouraged to search out similar business press articles from their country.

Exhibit 8 shows the size of the world beer market. It should be noted that the specialty category is growing faster than the others, which is good news for
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