Anheuser-Busch CEO addresses investors about energy drinks

BOSTON Last week, Anheuser-Busch chief executive officer August A. Busch IV told investors that though the alcohol industry has changed at an unprecedented rate, the company is welcoming the change.

At the Lehman Brothers Conference, the company said that by promoting its line of energy drinks and waters, and upgrading packaging on one of its beers, consumers will continue driving the marketplace, giving them an opportunity for growth.

Though they are the leading beer distributor and importer in the United States, Anheuser-Busch said that the energy drink market exhibits strong growth potential. After introducing the energy drinks back in 2001, and receiving an overwhelming response, a 37% increase so far this year, they continue to create more flavors. Its most recent was180 Red with Goji, cherry energy drink that hit shelves in February. Anheuser-Busch joined up with Hansen Natural Corp. last year to increase in this segment of business.

Additionally, Busch announced that adaptation and evolution of its Michelob beer by upgrading the packaging and teardrop bottle to “better reflect the quality and heritage of the Michelob [brand].”

“Beer is still the number one choice,” said Busch, adding that beer makes up for 57% of alcohol servings. “[We are] meeting the brands of changing consumers… changing what we sell and how we sell it.”

Management also developed a business tactic dubbed “Project Blue Ocean,” a plan driven to increase savings and improve quality of production. It is said to target $300 to $400 million in cost savings over the next four years.