MarketWatch First Take: Budweiser announces details of World Cup victory celebration in Argentina

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Budweiser has announced details of the victory celebration the company is hosting for World Cup winner Argentina.

World Cup beer sponsor Budweiser, which is owned by Anheuser-Busch InBev BUD, -0.26%, had promised to award a large quantity of beer to the nation that won soccer’s showpiece. On Sunday, Lionel Messi led Argentina to victory over defending world champion France in a pulsating final in Qatar. Argentina clinched its third World Cup in a penalty shootout after the match ended in a 3-3 draw after 90 minutes of ply and two 15-minute halves of extra time.

A victory party in Argentina will cap an eventful period for Budweiser. In an abrupt reversal just two days before the world football showpiece kicked off last month, Qatar World Cup organizers banned beer sales at the tournament’s eight stadiums. Budweiser, after initially allowing that the Qatari decision was an awkward one, shrugged off the beer ban and promised “the ultimate championship celebration” for the World Cup winner, promoting its campaign using #BringHomeTheBud on social media. Widely interpreted as a reference to the surplus beer from Qatar, “Bring Home The Bud” is now the company’s largest ever global campaign.

Read: For Budweiser, Qatar World Cup has been a tale of tough logistics and quick thinking

Since launching the campaign, Budweiser has been tweeting images of red shipping containers bearing the hashtag in cities around the world, including Córdoba, Argentina; Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; and New York.

“The celebration kicked off after the official watch party in Buenos Aires, with the opening of the #BringHomeTheBud crates,” Budweiser said in a statement released on Monday. On Thursday, the victory celebration will continue at Fan Fest locations in Buenos Aires and in the cities of Rosario, the central Argentina town Messi left at age 13 to join FC Barcelona’s famed youth academy La Masia, and Córdoba. “These celebrations will feature musical performances, surprises in the red Budweiser crates to be revealed for fans at the party, partner activations and access to exclusive collectible merchandise to commemorate Argentina’s win.”

As part of the celebration, Budweiser will screen the music video for “The World Is Yours to Take” featuring rapper Lil Baby, shot at the World Cup. The video includes footage of the Argentine side lifting the trophy.?

Read: Budweiser shrugs off Qatar stadium beer ban, tweets new World Cup campaign

“We brought the BUDS,” tweeted Budweiser Argentina Sunday, with aerial footage of a massive crowd celebrating at the National Flag Memorial in Rosario. In the footage, fans can be seen celebrating atop a crate emblazoned with #BringHomeTheBud.

Messi — the Argentina captain and regarded by many as the greatest player of all time — participated in Budweiser’s “The World Is Yours to Take” advertising campaign during the World Cup. Brazilian star Neymar and England’s Raheem Sterling also took part in the campaign.

“This has been an incredible journey. It’s a historic moment, not just for me, but for all of Argentina,” Messi said in the statement released by Budweiser Monday. “ ‘The World Is Yours to Take’ has been a great way to tell my story to achieve this dream. I’m excited that we’re able to celebrate and Bring Home the Buds to all the fans that supported us.”

See: Qatar World Cup controversy means sponsors are walking a tightrope

Budweiser has been a World Cup partner since 1986 and reportedly paid $ 75 million for its sponsorship this year.

Sponsorship marketing expert Ricardo Fort, founder of Sport by Fort Consulting and the former head of global sponsorships at Visa Inc. V, -1.22% and Coca-Cola Co. KO, -0.11%, told MarketWatch last week that Budweiser’s nimble World Cup marketing will have an impact long after the final goal in Qatar. “The idea of creating an event after the World Cup to celebrate the winner, I think it’s brilliant,” he said, adding that Budweiser turned a problem into an opportunity to extend its World Cup promotion with consumers beyond the final.

“I can easily see them doing it in the future,” Fort said, adding that the concept could also be applied to other major sporting events. “ ‘The winning city in the Super Bowl gets all the beer’ — this idea has a lot of legs,” he said.

Anheuser-Busch InBev’s stock were down 0.32% after midday on Monday, with the S&P 500 SPX, -1.08% declining 0.9%.

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