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AB InBev wants to lure Chinese drinkers into craft beer with Boxing Cat refresh

AB InBev has relaunched its Boxing Cat craft beer with the aim of turning Chinese tastes towards the craft beer category.

The business brought on R/GA to give the brand a new look, as well as launch an integrated campaign to educate the Chinese audience that currently link craft beer to being expensive or having a heavy taste.

The answer is a new logo that puts the Boxing Cat as the focus and a set of films that introduce him as Louis, a character that is fighting the world’s boring beers.

“Louie is the embodiment of the brand. He’s there to challenge the ordinary, so we see him patrolling the streets, ridding them of mundane beer, one haymaker at a time,” said AB InBev head of craft and specialities for APAC, Nicolas Eduardo Morelli. “It’s beautiful. The storytelling is impactful and we’re incredibly happy with the result.”

The videos and logos take on a graphic-novel style, aimed to appeal to a younger crowd that has thus far been shunning the craft beer category. According to R/GA, craft beer takes up just 1% of beer sales in China, versus up to 14% globally.

“We saw an enormous opportunity for Boxing Cat to be the contender that challenged those expectations, by leveraging their heritage as a local upstart and creating a distinct personality for the brand - a crazy, kickass one that is the antithesis of ordinary,” said R/GA Shanghai executive creative director, Terence Leong.

The ads, produced by Final Frontier and directed and animated by Buenos Aires studio Le Cube, are being teased across the brand’s WeChat channels, alongside themed launch parties in Shanghai and Beijing.

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