Asahi Breweries launches a 1,000-person virtual bar in Japan tomorrow!


Tomorrow, Asahi Breweries is opening a 1,000 person ‘virtual bar’ in Japan.

Their flagship brand Asahi Super Dry will be leading event. The platform being used is Zoom and it will be hosted by well-known comedians and brand ambassadors. 1,000 consumers will be attending. Also, Zoom background designs featuring Asahi Super Dry are available for participants.

The company is planning four virtual bars over the coming weeks.

Virtual drinking and dining events have become popular since countries started social distancing measures. Asahi is attempting to leverage this growing trend on an ambitious scale.

Earlier this month, Japan extended its state of emergency from Tokyo and selected prefectures to the entire country. The government requested consumers to stay at home and not to visit venues including bars and restaurants.

Asahi, the beer market leader in the country, has responded quickly to the new situation, in order to continue to engage with consumers. Tomorrow’s inaugural event has been heavily promoted on its social media platforms.

According to GlobalData’s latest ‘Coronavirus (COVID-19) Tracker Consumer Survey’, more than half of consumers from the 11 countries surveyed say that they are spending more time browsing social media. Indeed, some of them have been spending all day every day online since the outbreak of COVID-19. Digital marketing is now more important than ever, not only for brands in Japan, but also globally to connect with consumers.


(in Japanese)

Japan Overtakes Germany in Champagne Export Market

Japan has overtaken Germany in export volumes of champagne for the first time in history, according to recent data provided by Comité Champagne.

Japan imported 12.8m bottles between 2016-17, which is a 21.3% increase on the previous year, leapfrogging them above Germany into third place.

“Over the past 20 years, Japan has produced 3,000 sommeliers and the country has a real passion for champagne,” said Vincent Perrin, deputy direct general, Comité Champagne.

“Japan has a strong distribution network and benefited from the free trade agreement announced with the EU.”

The US remains the number one for exports in terms of value, with more than half a billion Euros recorded in 2017, however the UK imported almost 28m bottles over the same period, a global high despite recording an 11% decrease in volumes.

Perrin adds: “There is an uncertainty with the UK due to the effects of Brexit, however the French economy is in a good place so we’re expecting big things for 2018, specifically in the on-trade.”

China grew 76.7% in terms of volume in 2017, the largest increase globally and the country is now ranked 15th in the world.

“These are promising signs from China, but I think they need educating on wines that aren’t Bordeaux reds before they become truly influential,” said Perrin.