Big Brewers Thirsty for China Craft Beer Business.

By Mark Andrews

Nikkei Asian Review. 03/06/2017

Global giants could move to corner market for premium beverages

SHANGHAI — It is a Tuesday night, yet World of Beer on Shanghai’s Fumin Road is packed with a mixed crowd of expatriates and locals. The bar is stocked with craft beers from around the world, and manager Jacques Zhu is busy making recommendations — he has 41 different beers on tap, and around 300 in bottles. Meanwhile, a Filipino band belts out classic rock songs.

World of Beer, based in Tampa, Florida, has 75 locations around the U.S., but the Shanghai branch is its first international franchise. Dezan Shira & Associates, a business intelligence company, estimates that the craft market makes up only 1% of China’s total beer market, compared with 20% in the U.S., but still represents $400 million in annual sales.

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Mark Andrews has written about everything from Japanese houses to heli hikes on New Zealand glaciers, test drives of Chinese cars to bar and restaurant reviews. He currently specialises in travel articles and reviews of Chinese cars plus articles about the Chinese auto industry.

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