The market for alcoholic beverages is massive; according to Euromonitor, the Kenyan alcohol market is worth more than $3BN. In 2021, Kenya's 100-year-old alcohol manufacturer generated over $751M. But as consumers shift towards consuming more alcohol on trade (at bars and restaurants), distributors in the industry need to rethink their strategy to serve new restaurants and hotels.
But first, what do Kenyans drink?
Beer is the most popular alcoholic beverage in Kenya, accounting for about 60% of all alcohol sales. According to a report by Euromonitor, beer sales in Kenya increased by 5.5% in 2020 despite the challenges brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic. This growth can be attributed to the increase in demand for affordable beer brands in the country.
Spirits are the second most popular alcoholic beverage in Kenya, accounting for about 20% of all alcohol sales. This category includes beverages such as whiskey, vodka, gin, brandy, and rum. The popularity of spirits is attributed to the growing middle class in Kenya, which has an increased disposable income to spend on premium spirits.
Wine is the third most popular alcoholic beverage in Kenya, accounting for about 10% of all alcohol sales. According to a report by Euromonitor, wine sales in Kenya increased by 3.5% in 2020, driven by the growing interest in wine among the middle class.
Cider is a relatively new category of alcoholic beverage in Kenya, accounting for about 2% of all alcohol sales. This category includes beverages such as apple cider and pear cider. The popularity of cider is attributed to its refreshing taste and low alcohol content, making it a preferred choice for consumers who want to enjoy a light alcoholic beverage.
Alcohol distributors can win with medium-sized bars and restaurants in Kenya by taking a customer-centric approach and providing value-added services to their clients. Here are some strategies they can use:
Provide credit facilities:
Many medium-sized bars and restaurants in Kenya face cash flow challenges, and distributors can provide credit facilities to help them manage their working capital. This can help build long-term relationships with clients and increase customer loyalty. Caantin has partnered with Pezesha and other financial institutions to help distributors serving restaurants provide credit facilities.
Offer competitive prices:
Distributors can offer competitive product prices to attract medium-sized bars and restaurants. They can achieve this by sourcing products directly from manufacturers or leveraging economies of scale to negotiate better prices.
Provide training and support:
Distributors can provide training and support to bartenders and restaurant staff on how to serve and present their products. This can help improve the customer experience and drive sales.
Provide marketing support:
Distributors can support their clients by helping them promote their products through social media, events, and other marketing channels. This can help increase brand visibility and awareness, leading to increased sales. Alcohol distributors that provide their sales teams with the tools to manage their customers at scale will prevail. Caantin's Vendor Platform helps importers and distributors of alcohol to reach restaurants, bars and hotels easily.
In summary, alcohol distributors can win with medium-sized bars and restaurants in Kenya by offering competitive prices, credit facilities, training and support, marketing support, a wide range of products, and timely delivery.
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